Men Explain Things To Me
by Rebecca Solnit
2014/ 130 pages
read by Luci Christian Bell 2h 48m
rating – 8 / nonfiction – feminist essays
I haven’t read anything by Solit for many years and then I wasn’t too thrilled by Wanderlust, her book about walking, but really about other things – the wanderings of a woman’s mind. Men Explain Things To Me came up on one of my reading lists and I was tempted and got it from Audible.
This one is pretty good even if I’m not all that interested in feminist theory these days. It seems this book has become a standard of 3rd wave feminism or are we getting to the 4th? – http://www.pacificu.edu/about-us/news-events/four-waves-feminism
In seven essays, some previously published elsewhere, Solnit expounds on the fact that although things are generally getting better, and not all men are bad guys by any means, women are still not taken seriously in the world which is dominated by the male point of view (“mansplaining”). We are still too physically vulnerable and are “disappeared” from the patrilineal genealogies and life. But we are benefited by marriage equality, should try embracing the unknown (about themselves) and all we can do is go forward – it’s too late to go back in the old traditional boxes. – The links go to the essays in various places.
1.. Men Explain Things To Me (2012) at the Guernica Magazine
Great essay – hooked me in.
2. The Longest War – at Tom Dispatch (scroll down) – violence against women
is Incredible – this one is a must-read.
3. Worlds Collide in a Luxury Suite – at Tom Dispatch -the bravery of the maid against Strauss-Kahn – a bit dated maybe but interesting, I suppose.
4. In Praise of Threat – How equality of marriage leads to freedom for all
Yes! And times have indeed changed – this is not just about women, it’s about role hierarchies.
5. Grandmother Spider – many of our real influences come from people, places and things other than the patrilineal – okay.
6. Woolf’s Darkness: Embracing the Inexplicable” – at the New Yorker -I really enjoyed the bit about “Killing the ‘Angel in the House'” and dreaming your own dreams. This is certainly not just for women.
7 Pandora’s Box and the Volunteer Police Force – at Tom Dispatch – the revolution is not finished, but it takes time to change 5,000 years of male domination and what has been accomplished isn’t going to go away. What is it men want?
“I think the future of something we may no longer call feminism must include a deeper inquiry into men. Feminism sought and seeks to change the whole human world; many men are on board with the project, but how it benefits men, and in what ways the status quo damages men as well, could bear far more thought.”