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Male-strom in a Teacup

No, not THAT kind of “male study.”

“Men’s Studies” has existed as an academic discipline for several decades now. Not surprisingly, most of those involved in it identify themselves as feminists – as people interested in studying gender tend to do. But not all of them: A couple of years back, a group of mostly anti-feminist academics and popular writers with an interest in gender decided to try to do a sort of end run around the discipline of “Men’s Studies” by conjuring up a whole new, altogether un-feminist discipline called “Male Studies.”

Recently, The University of South Australia announced that it would start offering postgraduate courses in Male Studies sometime in 2014; our old friend Eoghan/Sigil1 brought this earthshattering news to the Men’s Rights subreddit the other day, where it was greeted with … suspicion and hostility.

GotMyFrogHatOn wrote:

Great, now men have the same opportunity as women to waste their time and money on a worthless degree!

Liverotto was even blunter:

YES, because the cure to bullshit is… MORE BULLSHIT! /s

That’s right: Men’s Rights Redditors hate Women’s Studies, and Gender Studies, and apparently every academic discipline with the word “Studies” in it so much that they’ve transferred this hatred to a new academic discipline that could well have been (and sort of was) designed just for them.

But don’t worry, they still hate Women’s Studies the most:

What was I saying the other day about projection?

495 replies on “Male-strom in a Teacup”

’m sorry you extreme feminists can’t handle the truth.

i’m sorry your dishwater weak playskool feminism can’t handle questioning your received assumptions about reality and has to fall back on cliches like ‘can’t handle the truth’ but nobody ever accused you of intellectual integrity.

(Shirt finally comes off at 3:50 or so, btw. Note the screaming from the women in the audience – that isn’t a strip show, those are celebrity guests at a movie awards ceremony. Men’s bodies aren’t sexually appealing and women don’t find looking at them arousing? Please.)

and whining about ‘strawmen’ is pretty hilarious considering that your standard response to substantive criticism is to completely ignore it and the stumble back hear bleating about how we’re just ignoring thing we don’t like.

do you have any powers of self-reflection at all?

Ruby: Beauty=symmetry. That’s how beauty is measured.

Nope. I’ve done some photoshop work where we did perfect mirroring of people’s faces. A perfect symmetric face looks wrong, and not attractive.

Ruby: Your link, is crap.

1: It’s not an actual study.

2: It has a gross logical failure at root.

3: Kanazawa is a crank†.

You can fix one, by linking to the study, but Kanazawa is not going to stop being a crank, so the odds of the study being structurally sound is still slim.

Point two is the real killer. If we assume that evolutionary pressures on secondary sexual characteristics will take place, then we can also assume that what we find attractive now (even if there were no cultural elements) would be less present in the past.

But that would go the same for men as for women. One of the more interesting aspects of primates is the relative lack of sexual dimorphism.

Oddly the direction in which you claim it runs in Homo sapiens sapiens is contrary to all other observed species, where the more dramatic, “attractive” mating displays belong to the male, not the female.

Do you have an explanation for this singular divergence.

†Seriously S. Kanazawa makes the rest of the EvPsych Brigade look reasonable. He is probably the least reputable advocate of EvPsych: among those who are actually credentialed researchers.

ruby, you’re not the first person to wander in here with a vague idea that they like something called ‘feminism’ but they don’t want to do any work for it, gets upset when they’re called on it, and the ends up posting on r/mensrights six months later

you are not a special snowflake. get over yourself.

CassandraSays — were they singing? I was too busy watching those dance moves to notice…

Pecunium — “Do you have an explanation for this singular divergence.”

Men killed all the mammoths so women didn’t have to worry about the sort of predation of their young that seems to be the cause of the muted colorings in other animals? /snark

(How did I ever miss that one of those links was Kanazawa though, damn)

Ruby: I never said men weren’t attractive.

No, you didn’t use exactly those words, like Brandon you are pretending the content of your statements isn’t anything more than exactly what you typed; while spending lots of time pretending that things we didn’t say, implictly; nor by implication, are the sum total of our arguments.

You said that “nudity is not a great look for men”, because we aren’t pleasant to look at.

Something which is pleasant to look at is attractive. Something which isn’t pleasant to look at is unattractive.

Q.E.D. you said men were, as a class, unnatractive.

ruby, if your arguments are as strong as you claim i dare you to go back through this thread and quote and respond to everything pecunium has said.

Or hell, just anything that anyone has said. But xie’s trolling for the laffs or whatever, so xie won’t. Anyway, I’m going back to googling jeremy renner shirtless now.

Playboy far outsells Playgirl

I was going to complain about this, since I thought Playgirl ceased production YEARS ago, but instead I find it’s still alive and kicking. 😀

I clicked over to their site, though, and… it looks dreadfully generic AND gives me pop-up ads. I think this is less about “women don’t like to look at men naked” and “whoever is in charge of the Playgirl concept isn’t enough of a businessperson to compete with today’s Internet porn”. I’ve seen much hotter stuff on my Tumblr, such as this guy in a skirt, this gentleman with tats, and Misha Collins.

Also, Ruby, you know there are other websites besides Playgirl that women look at? And they read romance novels where the male characters are described in detail? And write fanfic, which is about two dudes fucking more often than not?

NWO, no one’s trying to take away your right to be a disgusting homophobe! We’re merely letting you know we’re personally repulsed by it! Don’t I have the right to find you repulsive?

@Argenti – That video does kind of demonstrate what someone was saying earlier about women finding men sexier when they’re in motion than in still photos, doesn’t it? There’s this one band that I’ve covered multiple times where the bass player stalks like a cat when he walks, and it’s a beautiful thing.

“That video does kind of demonstrate what someone was saying earlier about women finding men sexier when they’re in motion than in still photos, doesn’t it?” — perhaps? *not straight, not cis* but perhaps? I co-sign that people find moving people more attractive though!

I think bodies in motion are just inherently more interesting, although I tend to dislike the kind of pantomine of sexiness that you see in, say, strippers on poles. Which is why I think the pole dancing is the least sexy part of that clip.

Actually that’s part of what’s tiresome about Ruby. The only things she seems to recognise as “sexy” are those things where it’s being really loudly pantomimed THIS IS SEXY, PAY ATTENTION NOW, so…strippers, Playboy, etc. It’s like if a visual image doesn’t have “this is for you to wank to” as the obvious intent she doesn’t read it as even potentially sexy. She’s every advertiser’s dream!

Agreed, on all of that, but that’s not just Ruby, or straight? women — I have a gay male friend who once got into this stupid debate over whether my porn folder would interest him, apparently “there are no cocks here” = “lesbian porn” >.<

I’m a genderqueer poly kinky bisexual, how is my brain evo-pysch wired?

I am curious, because I, like all women and all men need Ruby to tell me as well what my attractions, feelings, and sexuality is all about.

Ooh, I like this game!

Ruby, I’m bisexual. What happens if I’m attracted to a woman? Am I attracted to her money or her body? If I’m attracted to a man’s body and don’t even notice how much money he makes does that mean I think he’s actually a woman? Surely you must be able to explain how all of this works via bad science reporting evopsych.

darksidecat — I’ll see your genderqueer poly kininess and raise you pansexual (I realize bisexual is often used for being more easily understood, I do it myself, this is more directed at Ruby)

I’m really curious what Ruby thinks when the person interesting me is androgynous in appearance though!

And is it just me, or are a surprising number of manboobzer’s either not cis, not straight, or both? Might be that we’re too busy mocking misogyny to mock each other, which I think is bloody excellent.

Also! I prefer pretty boys who’re often a bit androgynous, when it comes to men. I’m guessing you’d think that’s because I’m bi? But wait…babies! Cave people! What is it in me specifically that makes a pretty face more important to me in a man than the ability to go hunt mammoths and defend the cave from sabre-tooth tigers?

A crucial part of Ruby’s argument is the erroneous notion that patriarchy has “diminished” in the past however many years.

It has not. The trappings of mainstream American culture have changed over time, but it’s as patriarchal as ever.

@Argenti: It’s not just you–I have the perception (haven’t done a count or anything) that there’s a lot more people here identifying with alternative sexualities than other places I hang out (could be a feature of where I hang out). All brought together to mock misogyny and talk about Stuff. Pretty cool.

Just a guess but — we’ve all already been mocked enough in real life these guys have nothing on that?

@CassandraSays Oh, absolutely there are bands created just for that. No doubt about it. Others who weren’t built around being good looking, but happen to be good looking, sometimes play it up for the ladies as well. As a woman who was heavily involved in my local music scene, I can tell you all about “groupies” and women viewing musicians as eye candy and going just for good looking men. It’s nothing new. So when these guys take off their shirts and throw them into the crowd, the female fans are scrambling to catch their sweaty rags. I mean, Ruby is not even close to accurate with her comparison because men are just presented sexually in different ways. You can’t talk about playgirl sales vs playboy sales and call it a day. You gotta consider how many Backstreet Boys albums sold after they made a music video dancing shirtless in the rain.

I dunno if the guy in that band was considered traditionally attractive, but he was to me, lol. I turned to my cousin and was like, “Oh my, he could totally get it,” and she was like, “REALLY? Ok?” The males in the audience definitely outweighed the females by a large percentage. The band definitely wasn’t founded on the basis of hotness. It wasn’t even what I would consider a mid-level band. Him stripping was really just a perk though because I’m into that kind of music anyways. Although there was one lady there in heels and a short skirt gyrating to the non-gyratable music and I was sitting there thinking, “ska is not sexy, what are you doing?” hahaha.

And like the groups you mentioned, when I was like 14 or so, I used to love this band called the Moffatts and I saw them live like 4 times. I was friends with some other teen girls who I met at their shows where the audience was almost exclusively teen girls (and their parents). Well, the singer used to take off his shirt and then during this song “Misery,” he would like, caress his stomach whiles singing the words, “I wish that you would hold me, touch me, feel me,” and we would go absolutely nuts. One of my friends even snapped a bunch of quick shots of it to make a flip book of sorts out of it, haha.

(Note, he doesn’t do it in this video and I can’t find one on youtube but whatever, leaving it here anyways haha)

the lyrics are clearly made for a female audience to swoon over. Oh, and there was a fanfic about this guy and the lead singer of Hanson falling in love and giving each other bjs. I read it from time to time for lols still because fanfiction cracks me up.

@Jessay: Male musicians and female fans–nothing new at all.

Apparently Frank Sinatra was an incredible sex symbol in his day (and looked at w/concern by parents) as the teenagers and young women swarmed to his concerts.


And let’s not forget the Beatles.

Not as much throwing of shirts in those days (but the women throwing things on stage were legendary).,

I know I am late to the party, but… do not men and women evolve at the same time? If a good-looking woman and an average-looking man have children, it won’t be good-looking girls and average-looking boys. Especially if the only factor counted as beauty is simmetry!

darksidecat: Sorry I’m not Ruby, but here’s my own evo-psych explanation for your sexual proclivities (and a lot of mine lol):

Bisexuality is good for social bonding because fucking people brings you emotionally closer to them a lot of the time, so if someone wants to have sex with you again he/she is also more likely to bring you food, babysit your kids, protect you from sabre-tooth tigers and wooly mammoths, etc.

Poly means you can encourage your lovers to all be friends with each other, thus increasing the social bonding and therefore the chances for group survival.

Kinky: if you’re a sub, you can get off on behaviors other people might consider a deal-breaker, thus increasing your pool of potential sexual partners. If you’re a dom, you can sexually dominate people into bringing you food, babysitting your kids, protecting you from mammoths etc. If you’re a switch, best of both worlds!

Not sure where genderqueer fits in, though.

“Not sure where genderqueer fits in, though.”

Why am I not surprised?

Hey, why don’t the asexuals get an evopsych explanation? I’ve been asking for one ever since Ruby started!

Let me guess, we’re humanity’s way of keeping the population in check?

Bisexuality is only a boost to social bonding if everyone fucks everyone, like bonobos. Most human beings who are bisexual do not do that – in fact, some of us are remarkably picky.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m off to sexually dominate everyone in my neighborhood into bringing me cave-pizza.

The evo-psych nonsense (assuming it was not offered as a joke, in which case, never mind) is made even more ridiculous because the things being discussed (bisexuality, polyamory, kink) are minority behaviors in our culture, and not generally valued. If they have such reproductive benefits, why aren’t they more widespread in the gene pool?

Now, one might say, “well, the inclination toward them is widespread, it’s just that we’ve been socialized against actually carrying it out,” to which I would reply “AND THAT IS THE BASIC PROBLEM WITH EVO-PSYCH AS A BEHAVIORAL EXPLANATION.”

burgundy — There’s also a few other obvious problems with the theory (if it wasn’t a joke).

“Bisexuality is…” blah blah blah none of it is relevant in a monogamous relationship.

“Poly means you can encourage your lovers to all be friends with each other…” — oh gods does it not work like that (and “oh great, you hate each other” is hella awkward)

“Kinky: if you’re a sub, you can get off on behaviors other people might consider a deal-breaker, thus increasing your pool of potential sexual partners.” — abusive is still a deal breaker

“If you’re a dom, you can sexually dominate people into bringing you food, babysitting your kids, protecting you from mammoths etc.” — dom =/= abuse through control

“If you’re a switch, best of both worlds!” — ok, that one’s true, they just aren’t the worlds pissedoffwoman thinks they are.

“…protect you from…wooly mammoths…” — we fought the mammoths for you!!

If we enumerate all the problems with that “explanation,” we’ll never get anything else done. The bisexuality thing is not only irrelevant to monogamy, it’s irrelevant to anyone who’s picky. Bi != promiscuous. Social-bonding-through-fucking is not a function of who you’re attracted to, it’s a function of how many people you are willing to fuck who are in turn willing to fuck you. Hell, I’m bi and poly and I still don’t fuck enough people for this line of reasoning to make sense.

RE: Argenti

Agreed, on all of that, but that’s not just Ruby, or straight? women — I have a gay male friend who once got into this stupid debate over whether my porn folder would interest him, apparently “there are no cocks here” = “lesbian porn” >.<

I’m gay and STILL have days where I nurse the chip on my shoulder about how I fail at gay manliness because I don’t like dick enough. Trying to find gay porn to watch with hubby where there ISN’T an overwhelming focus on penis is fucking HARD. (No pun intended.) Also the weird “we must never smile or look affectionate while fucking, just bored or constipated” thing. I often end up watching dyke porn with him just because even though it brings out no response in me either, at least I don’t feel like I’m failing something watching it. At least they look like they’re having FUN.

RE: pissedoffwomen

I’m a sub. What I allow my husband to do because I trust him to the end of the earth doesn’t have anything to do what I trust OTHER people to do. Most dominating behavior I see depicted in pop culture, sexual or not, is completely douchey to me.

Revised theory!

Bi poly kinky genderqueers are so unfit for caveperson life, it’s a miracle they’re not extinct!

Bisexuality is bad for gene survival because a bi woman could end up spending her prime reproductive years in a monogamous relationship with another woman, and only become interested in fucking men after menopause. And a bi man could walk out on the mother of his children to spend all his time in non-reproductive sex with guys, lowering the kids’ chances of survival without fathering any more backup kids!

Poly is bad for social bonding because you might want to fuck a whole bunch of people who are either naturally more sexually jealous than you, or just plain don’t like each other, leading to your lovers fighting over you instead of fighting the sabre-tooths.

Kinky: if you’re into sado-masochism, you could take it too far, resulting in you or your lover or both parties ending up too badly physically hurt the next day to be much use in hunting, or even gathering.

Still not sure where genderqueer fits in, but I’m sure some enterprising “scientist” is working on it, let’s hope not with public money…

“pissoffwoman, what the hell are you doing here?” — actually trolling I hope

LBT — congrats on finding porn that actually looks fun!

“just plain don’t like each other, leading to your lovers fighting over you instead of fighting the sabre-tooths.” — um, what? o.O?

“Still not sure where genderqueer fits in, but I’m sure some enterprising “scientist” is working on it, let’s hope not with public money…” — how in the fuck…how is ev-psych at all worth spending public money on? But genderqueer people aren’t?

Does anyone have a nice calming SCENTED FUCKING CANDLE I can borrow? (Actually, SCENTED FUCKING CANDLE! itself seems to work, excellent!)

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