It’s Not the End of Men, and We Still Have Work to Do

Men and women should celebrate where we are, Hugo Schwyzer writes, but we still need to keep moving forward.

Good Men Project founder Tom Matlack says he’s depressed after reading this Meghan Casserly column at Forbes.com:  Why We Need to Stop Bemoaning the End of Men. While Tom is pleased that Meghan pushes back against the popular media trope of a dire masculinity crisis, he’s upset that she talks about the enduring power of “paternalistic authority” of men over women. Tom calls it “piling on.”

I appreciated Meghan’s column enormously, particularly the way she takes apart the arguments of anti-feminists like Kay Hymowitz, who have famously suggested that men are alienated by women’s success (and that that alienation is largely women’s fault.) And unlike Tom, I think Meghan is right on the money when she suggests that paternalism continues.

It’s easy to confuse increased opportunity for women with the arrival of genuine parity. There are more women CEOs and more women doctors than there were 25 years ago, just as there are (probably) more men doing dishes and being affectionate fathers. There’s much to celebrate in that trend. But though more heterosexual men than ever before may want to be genuine partners to their girlfriends and wives, that desire to be more helpful and more emotionally present doesn’t mean that men can claim that patriarchy and sexism are dead.

As reported this week, men with children are doing more housework than ever before. We’re up to spending 80% as much time as women do on chores. That’s an undeniable improvement over where we were a few short decades ago. But again, a trend in the right direction doesn’t mean the problem of inequality has been licked. And as that same study found, women are doing much more than those statistics suggest, largely because women spend much more time than men multi-tasking.  The fact that we’re doing more than ever before doesn’t change the reality that we’re still not pulling our weight.

There’s a long tradition in men’s writing (see Freud, Sigmund) of complaining that women’s demands are excessive and irrational. The modern iteration of that tactic is to point out how hard men are trying. What more could women possibly want? Don’t women have more opportunities than ever before?  Aren’t men doing more domestic chores and showing more affection than their fathers’ generation ever did? Why isn’t that enough? When are these shrews going to give us a break, give us a cookie, and let “good enough” be sufficient?

Individual men are not called to be martyrs. (I don’t know any women who expect them to be.) But we can do better than point endlessly to all the things we’ve done right, as if they constitute a credit balance sufficient to discharge the debts from all the places where we continue to fall short. And make no mistake, we are still falling short. That men  are up to doing 80% of the work—and that women are up to earning 80 cents on our dollar—indicates progress. But to use a football analogy, it’s still the third quarter and though we’re catching up, we need another couple of touchdowns to win the game.  And some men sound like they’re ready to hit the showers.

There is no “end of men”; there is no “gender war.”  Things are getting better, and we should celebrate it. But the work isn’t done yet, either in the home or in the boardroom. Men still do less than their full fair share—and receive more than their share of the rewards of power. Making that point, as Meghan does, is not “piling on.” It’s a clarion call to keep pushing forward.

—Photo Toms Bauģis/Flickr

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About Hugo Schwyzer

Hugo Schwyzer has taught history and gender studies at Pasadena City College since 1993, where he developed the college's first courses on Men and Masculinity and Beauty and Body Image. He serves as co-director of the Perfectly Unperfected Project, a campaign to transform young people's attitudes around body image and fashion. Hugo lives with his wife, daughter, and six chinchillas in Los Angeles. Hugo blogs at his website

Comments

  1. Hugo, what about the fact that researchers and authors such as Linda Babcock (“Women Don’t Ask”) have found a large part of the reason women don’t make as much as men is because they are less likely to negotiate? I think (especially recently) the wage gap exists because women either either won’t or can’t negotiate for themselves. Men are more direct and go after what they want. And as most experts will tell you, those who ask for raises and actively negotiate for themselves most often see an increase. But if you fail to negotiate or never speak up, then it stands to reason you won’t be paid as much as someone who does.

    But I’ll admit, patriarchy is alive and well in certain respects. There’s no question about that. But the feeling I got from Tom’s piece is that we’re working hard to keep trending in the right direction, yet many of us feel like we’re being repeatedly kicked and jabbed at in the process. And I think that’s a very fair point.

    • I think the conditioning that shames women out of speaking up is part and parcel of the patriarchy that the Forbes piece is talking about.

      I just don’t see where men are being kicked and jabbed.

      • “I just don’t see where men are being kicked and jabbed.”

        That’s what feminism does. It prevents people from seeing reality. That is why the majority of women reject it.

        • Another MRA chimes in to attack anything Hugo writes, jabbering nonsense and doing absolutely nothing to prove his wild claim.

          • Sorry, pal.  I’m neither an MRA nor a feminist.   

            I stay away any ideology which is anti-male or anti-female or that favor one sex over another, which both feminism and the MRA movements do. 

            But that explains why, in these writings, everything (literally) is considered the fault of men.  How is that possible unless a person considers males to be inferior?  That can only makes sense viewing the world through an (in this case) anti-male prism.

          • Sorry, pal.  I’m neither an MRA nor a feminist.   

            I stay away from any ideology that is anti-male or anti-female or that favor one sex over another, which both feminism and the MRA movements do. 

            But that explains why, in these writings, everything (literally) is considered the fault of men.  How is that possible unless a person considers males to be inferior?  That can only makes sense viewing the world through an (in this case) anti-male prism.

            • “I stay away [sic] any ideology which is anti-male or anti-female or that favor one sex over another, which both feminism and the MRA movements do.”

              I could hardy support any such ideology, either. But that’s the thing – feminism is not anti-men, and, perhaps surprisingly for some, nor does it favour women over men. Feminism is about equality of the sexes. Certainly, there have been some extreme “feminists” that have been man-haters, but they are certainly not representative of the whole (just as the man who hates women is not representative of all men). The view that all feminists are man-haters is an out-dated, dangerous one and it is this spurious view, rather than the few man-haters out there, that is doing the most to halt our progress towards equality.

            • “But that’s the thing – feminism is not anti-men, and, perhaps surprisingly for some, nor does it favour women over men.”

              My statement about feminism is based on observation. As I said, there is a great deal of evidence to support it. The simplest to cite are articles here, including this one. I am far from the only one to note the absolutely consistent message from the vast majority of feminist writers that fault men and/or boys whenever a social or other problem is discussed.

              “Feminism is about equality of the sexes.”

              If only. As a father of two daughters, if the evidence showed that to be true I would be on-board.

          • Peter Houlihan says:

            He cited a study to back him up and had a valid point. Should we call you “just another feminist jumping in to defend Hugo when anyone points out the gaping flaws in his arguments”?

      • Peter Houlihan says:

        Men are being kicked and jabbed when gender commentators describe gender as something men use to put women down and is men’s responsibility to alleviate. You’re responsible for quite alot of that here.

  2. When men are overrepresented in prison, Hugo blames men.
    When men are overrepresented on the CEO board, Hugo thinks it’s blames the patriarchy.

    Men are responsible for their bad accomplishments, but not their good accomplishments.

  3. I’ve always been puzzled by the meme that men don’t pull their fair share – implicit in that argument is that women do “more” and men do “less”, of whatever it is that people do in total. This would only be true if I did, in the aggregate, while my partner took a nap, in the aggregate. The sum of paid plus non-paid hours for both sexes is roughly the same (actually I believe men sum to a slightly higher number), and since there are only 24 hours in a day for both sexes, this inequality is one of specific tasks not overall effort, and the conflation of one with the other is meddling with nonsense.

    My ex used to work more overtime than I, while I managed more of the finances and investments. It would be tedious of me to ask for equality on the finances without relieving his burden (money) on the overtime. The pie will remain 24 hours regardless of conflations.

    • MorgainePendragon says:

      “The sum of paid plus non-paid hours for both sexes is roughly the same”

      No, it’s really not, not in ANY measurement anywhere in the world. Please, cite your sources.

      In the world, women do 2/3 to 3/4 of ALL the work, paid and unpaid. http://www.globalissues.org/article/166/womens-rights

      Yet we own only 10% of the wealth and 1% of the real property/means of production.

      In terms of Western “housework”, what studies show is that men do more than they used to IF ASKED TO DO IT and SHOWN HOW TO DO IT. FFS, even Cosmo (not exactly a bastion of feminism) did a story about this.

      But women are still responsible for it. I mean, an EIGHT YEAR OLD can do most of the housework too, if told when and where and how. Women don’t want another child at home. That doesn’t help.

      When men take 80% of the RESPONSIBILITY for non-paid work around the house, especially childcare and socialisation time, THEN perhaps things will be different.

      • Peter Houlihan says:

        Those studies attribute to men the money they earn, but fail to recognise that its mostly spent on and by women. Just because housewives don’t bring home the bacon, doesn’t mean they have nothing to eat.

        http://www.marketingcharts.com/topics/asia-pacific/women-in-mature-economies-control-household-spending-12931/

        “Once the college bills are out of the way and children launch their own households, the discretionary spending power of 50-plus women soars. They spend 2.5 times what the average person spends. Women are the primary buyers for computers, cars, banking, financial services and a lot of other big-ticket categories.” – Marti Barletta, Primetime Women

        http://www.trendsight.com/content/view/40/204/

        http://www.msmagazine.com/news/uswirestory.asp?ID=12789

        Also, young women are frequently earning more than men:
        http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/8803019/Young-women-now-earning-more-than-men.html

        http://www.time.com/time/business/article/0,8599,2015274,00.html

        Not to mention that numerous studies have found that when women make the same choices as men in the workplace they earn the same money if not more.

        http://unitedfamiliesinternational.wordpress.com/2011/05/02/myth-buster-monday-men-earn-more-than-women-for-the-same-job/
        (scroll to bottom for sources)

        Comparing men to 8 year old children is a very mature debating tactic.

        Incidentally, Asian women earn significantly more than White women in the same marketplace that women earn less than men. Is this because of discrimination against whites? Or because Asian women are instilled with cultural values that make them work harder, for longer and value income more than White women?

        I hold the same it true for men and women, women have historically been behind men in the workplace because they’ve been taught that their place is to spend money, rather than to earn it. Its still sexism, but its mostly gone and its not something men came up with to oppress women, or even something that harms women more than men.

      • Considering that the majority of the writers and readers of this site are from the US or other Western countries you might want to look at statistics that cover the population you’re speaking to. If you fancy yourself an analyst- think about your pool of statistics as a ven diagram. The people you’re lecturing with represent only a tiny portion of that great big circle. There are statistics that describe the people you are conversing with, yet you’re deliberately NOT using them. If one of the people I work with did that I’d nuke’em for shoddy and misleading analysis, wonder what they’re trying to hide, and immediately move them down a few notches in my esteem.
        Here is a source that reflects the majority of the readers of the GMP (adults in the United States). The statistics referenced in the Time article below come from the US Bureau of Labor Statistics (in terms of data quality and lack of bias it will be about the best you’ll find).

        http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,2084582,00.html

        “According to data just released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, men and women in 2010 who were married, childless and working full time (defined by the BLS as more than 35 hours a week) had combined daily totals of paid and unpaid work — which is to say, work at the office and all the drudgery you have to do at home — that were almost exactly the same: 8 hr. 11 min. for men, 8 hr. 3 min. for women. For those who had children under the age of 18, women employed full time did just 20 min. more of combined paid and unpaid work than men did, the smallest difference ever reported. No, men were not doing the same amount of housework as women, but neither were women pulling the same number of hours at the office as men.”

        By the way, here is the primary source- http://www.bls.gov/news.release/atus.nr0.htm

        My wife is a SAHM with 2 in school and 1 in pre-school. She has time every week to go to Yoga, do hours of volunteer work (8 hours this weekend alone), go to coffee with friends, and has a weekly cleaning service. I already do 100% of the paid work and a minority share of the unpaid work. I have probably 20% of the leisure time my wife does. Still think I (and the rest of the guys who read here) should take 80% of the responsibility for the unpaid work? No thank you. We aren’t responsible for balancing some global time use statistic. I’m mystified as to why you think we should be. If I, and every other guy on the GMP, decided to stop sleeping and double our work hours we might move your global statistic a tick but it wouldn’t do any good for ANY of the women you claim to care about. My wife would probably divorce me for being a crazed (from lack of sleep), workaholic, ocd, control freak, absentee parent.

  4. “But again, a trend in the right direction doesn’t mean the problem of inequality has been licked. And as that same study found, women are doing much more than those statistics suggest, largely because women spend much more time than men multi-tasking. The fact that we’re doing more than ever before doesn’t change the reality that we’re still not pulling our weight.”

    The study is based upon families with children – and as not all men and women fit that paradigm of 2.4 children, with the child and spouse count being zero – well I don’t see how such a study is being extrapolated to cover all me and all women.

    This Multitasking Trope has been about for a long time – and is used repeatedly to indicate that men in someway are, for want of a better term, mentally defective and women some form of Efficiency and Logistical Goddess .

    Multitasking seems to be repeatedly defined as only related to domestic situations! Maybe it needs to be renamed Domestitasking, so that study findings are less readily used as an anti male goad.

    “According to the National Science Foundation, women spend an average of 10 hours a week on household chores while men do eight.”

    Well that could be read to indicate that men have a faster work rate and are more efficient! In which case Multitasking means less efficiency? Or that men are even better at it?

    “Jobs that traditionally fall to men, such as home repairs and mowing the lawn, were not included in the survey. The researchers say that’s because these jobs are usually considered more enjoyable than “core chores” such as cleaning the kitchen or doing laundry.”

    Oh so there is no Gender Bias in the study then ??? – of course all men love sweeping yards, walking up and down repetitively in strait lines with a lawn mower – and find carrying out home repairs an absolute delight as they rhythmically push a roller loaded with paint up and down – up and down – up and down. Is it the repetition or the up and down that is the envious part that has it excluded from the study?

    Core Chores? Nice little bias to be accounted for there. Why not have a new Book “Women Cook – Men Take Out – the good and bad of Domestitasking”.

    Maybe when the people runnings studies have take the course “How To Design A Study And Remove Bias 101″ – then at that point their findings will be worthy of media coverage – and there can even be a photo of them with their Big Bright Shiny Certificate!

    Until then – I hope most rational men and women will do what anyone interested in domestic hygiene should do – consign then to the trash where all such Junk Science belongs.

  5. About negotiating. Men oftentimes don’t negotiate with women at all. Men are clued into how to get in the club, are coached by male mentors who have the power to push other men forward. A male friend and I did a test. Each of us went into a car dealership to negotiate a price on the same car. First he went in and then went to his car so the sales people would think we weren’t together. Then I went in and asked the same questions on the same car, and wanted to negotiate the price. The salesman said, “No, that’s the sticker price, take it or leave it.” My male friend was able to get the price down by a couple of thousand dollars. It was a shockingly eye opening experience. Now what I do is pay men 25% less and women 25% more when I have the chance to do it. I am going to redistribute my tip money, my discretionary money, and my holiday gift money accordingly. I don’t buy any cars from male sales staff anymore, and males just aren’t going to get my dollars until women reach 100% of the pay with men. It’s that simple, and I encourage all women out there to do with same.

    • KJ: That’s the spirit. One male car dealer didn’t give you what you want, so you declare war on ALL men. Because that makes perfect sense and doesn’t at all drop you to the level of the guy to whom you’re so vehemently opposed.

    • KJ, I was manipulated by a girlfriend once. Should I now go out of my way to manipulate women whenever I have the chance?

      I’m just trying to apply your “logic.”

    • A male friend and I did an experiment after graduating from law school — we sent the same cover letter to the same law firms, with virtually the same resume (our work experience and education was eerily similar) using almost exactly the same “blurbs” on our resumes. My friend got called for around five interviews. I got zero. Only difference — he had a male name, mine was obviously female.

  6. The Bad Man says:

    “The fact that we’re doing more than ever before doesn’t change the reality that we’re still not pulling our weight.”

    A recent 25-nation study by economists from Berlin, Brussels and Texas, which included rich and poor nations, found men do as much work as women when all types of work are combined.
    http://www.slate.com/id/2164268/

    Well, statistically men and women do the same amount of total work when paid work and housework is combined. If you are going to criticise men for not pulling their weight in housework then are you also going to criticise women for not pulling their weight in paid work? Of course not, you’re going to present one-sided statistics and blame men for both.

    What about power? It’s women who are largely responsible for determining gender roles and women who are largely responsible for their own choice about work and family. That’s the reason for the pay gap, it’s not because of discrimination or men not pulling their weight, it’s because of women’s choices.

    • This is old news. The Bureau of Labor Statistics has been running the American Time Use Survey for a decade now, and the finding is always the same: when all work is summed up, men and women do equal amounts.

      But then, feminists have never really been interested in what economists have to say. Probably because covering your ears and shouting is the best way to “fight the patriarchy.”

    • Yes, everything is because of women’s choice, women are the ones at fault. Men do no contribute at all. We see that.

  7. Tom Matlack says:

    “And make no mistake, we are still falling short.”

    Falling short of what? The supposed expectations of the collective conscience of women?

    This is where we get into trouble Hugo. I just don’t know why we have to start making broad stroke generalizations about the failure of men, the paternalistic society, the supposed evil that stands behind every set of testicles.

    I am a glass half full kind of guy. When I started GMP it was a selfish way to find and hang out with male heroes of every walk of life. And I found them. Lots of them. Guys in prison, guys at war, guys who were gay, guys who were African American, dads, husbands, rich, poor, guys who I had a lot in common with and guys who I had nothing in common with. Guys who had lost a kid. Guys who had lost a wife. Guys who had gotten sober against all odds, and one guy who just decided to try to be more civil on the commuter rail. I saw in them an inspiration to be a good guy in ways that I didn’t even know exist.

    If those guys, and the hundreds who have now joined up, are somehow falling short I really gotta call you on your shit. I’ve cried with them, seen them risk their lives, walk through hell and back. So its somehow their fault that we have a black President rather than a female one?

    Yes we can all do more to stop sexual trafficking, to level the playing field at the upper end of the corporate ladder, etc etc. But how does any of that become an inditement of our gender as men? My fundamental belief is that men aren’t failing, they are in fact good and facing a challenging, complex, confusing world. And your argument is not helping them, not helping women, and frankly not advancing the ball on the “manhood” crisis that seems to be every where we look these days.

    I would just rather celebrate what is good about men and build out from there, trusting that being good fathers and husbands is a core goal of most men, rather than dumping cold water on our gender in hopes of inspiring change.

    • “I would just rather celebrate what is good about men and build out from there, trusting that being good fathers and husbands is a core goal of most men, rather than dumping cold water on our gender in hopes of inspiring change.”

      Tom – do consider that not all men are fathers – and they aint husbands either. Those large brush strokes hit a wide group of people indiscriminately. It’s like White Wash – cheap and easy to splash about to get an adequate coverage.

      Being a Good Man is not all about Matrimony and Progeny – or how handy anyone is with a paint brush.

    • “I would just rather celebrate what is good about men and build out from there, trusting that being good fathers and husbands is a core goal of most men, rather than dumping cold water on our gender in hopes of inspiring change.”

      Exactly.

  8. Julie Gillis says:

    I posted this at Tom’s piece but I”ll post it here too.

    I think this is, for me, a both and situation. There are indeed people making things better outside of a binary (win v lose) and there are many many people who have and share stories on an individual level. And there are (and have been more) institutional problems. Much has shifted over the last 50 years on that institutional and personal level. Much can be done both for men and for women, but that doesn’t mean that “all” problems are solved/fixed whathaveyou, any more than saying racism doesn’t exist anymore and let’s just drop all that nonsense and we’re all equal.

    Many of us act and feel and behave equally when it comes to race. And there are still issues and places to improve institutionally.

    Constructs exist, I think, to help us make sense out of a huge possibly incomprehensible system of dynamics. When the constructs or models get set in stone is where the construct itself becomes part of a larger narrative story about “how things are.”

    I think this probably happens all the time.

    Anyway, FWIW I think it’s a both-and. Much like you need radicals pushing hard forward and diplomats making slower connections, much like you need peacemakers alongside rabblerousers, activists and advocates, I think I appreciate knowing that individuals can live on a different playing field than the systems they play in/on. But we are all in this system. It’s the water we swim in and it exists. Not necessarily in a “war” but it can feel that way. It’s certainly easy to experience it that way as binaries are kind of our default.

    We need to honor individuals heroes, we need to realize people are doing the best they can and in many case better than they expected, and also be aware that we live in a system that was different, is changing and is itself influenced by other systems-economy, social change, tech.

  9. Rhett Walker says:

    Great post, Hugo. I agree completely. I don’t really understand the defensiveness in response to Meghan’s or your article. No one is saying that all men are bad because there is still not full equality between men and women. But when I live in a society that affords me certain advantages just because I identify as a man, I need to be cognizant of that fact and it’s my responsibility to do what I can to address that. Still. I believe that the vast majority of men are good and want to be good husbands, fathers, partners, members of their community, etc. But I also believe that it’s really easy for us to maintain the status quo without even really thinking about it. So there’s a lot of work left to do. But we’re making the world better for men and women, right? It’s exciting to be a part of, and I welcome all the ways in which pushing for true gender equity will benefit men as well as women. There are many.

    • The Bad Man says:

      “But when I live in a society that affords me certain advantages just because I identify as a man”

      -Like the traditional responsibility to be a provider and selective service registration? How about the advantage of being 95% of unhoused homeless or the advantage of a 4x suicide rate?
      I still haven’t received my male privilege card yet, just like the majority of men who are not rich and powerful.

    • I love the argument that men have it better than women simply because of chromosomes and genitals.

      I was looking at differing groups – and one that stuck out was people with disabilities. Oddly there Males with disabilities are more highly disadvantaged than women with disabilities – even the same disability.

      There seems to be a sympathy trope in play which actually works against the male, no matter the genitals.

      So “the society affords benefits” on grounds of genitals is not all it’s cracked up to be.

      • MorgainePendragon says:

        “I love the argument that men have it better than women simply because of chromosomes and genitals.”

        Hmmm, I don’t know that argument.

        I’m familiar with the argument (supported by decades of research) that “men have it better” (although I would want qualification of better– but we can safely say in terms of economic, political and sexual equality) because of a few thousand years of socialisation and a social structure created originally to benefit the (almost all male) elite that exists today that still benefits the (mostly) male elite, but that a majority of men and even some women continue to support.

        Despite the fact that it screws them over.

        Is THAT the argument you mean, really?

        • Peter Houlihan says:

          Theres millenia of research supporting the theory that the sun goes around the earth, it just so happened to be completely wrong.

          Yeah, I think he was referring to the discredited bunk that suggests that men created gender to put women down. Who handed you your first dolly, who gave me my first toy gun? It wasn’t our fathers.

        • I’m familiar with the argument (supported by decades of research) that “men have it better” (although I would want qualification of better– but we can safely say in terms of economic, political and sexual equality) because of a few thousand years of socialisation and a social structure created originally to benefit the (almost all male) elite that exists today that still benefits the (mostly) male elite, but that a majority of men and even some women continue to support.
          You would not have made that bolded statement, unless you had the links to peer reviewed contemporary studies in your support. Could you post the links so we could read them. As the only figures I can remember show men and women agreeing broadly equally, with the concept of gender equality

        • Moragain – if people wish to argue about Patriarchy then they should call it such.

          “But when I live in a society that affords me certain advantages just because I identify as a man, I need to be cognizant of that fact and it’s my responsibility to do what I can to address that.”

          Well that is simply not correct – as Disabled men, Men from ethnic and racial groups, men from lower socio economic groups, and many others – know all too well – just having genitals does not bring “Advantage”. Middle and upper calls genitals may provide an air of privilege, but that does not mean it applies to all!

          The lazy just lump it all on men – and then they get upset when it’s possible, in fact so easy as to be child’s play, to point out that Not All men have it better!

          I note that you didn’t question my critique of the study mentioned and it’s underlying assumptions?

          I do love debate – but I’m not a fan of poor quality research, or claims that research has any quality about it at all when it’s riddled with bias, or assumptions peddled as reality on the back of it.

          That has nothing to do with genitals – just scientific method. P^)

    • “But when I live in a society that affords me certain advantages just because I identify as a man.”

      You are evidently unfamilar with the data that shows very clearly that black men are far less priviledged than are white women.

      • MorgainePendragon says:

        Yes, I’m unfamiliar with that data too.

        Could you provide links to PEER REVIEWED STUDIES that come to the conclusion “that black men are far less priviledged [sic] than are white women.”

        • Studies are often be biased and conflict with each other.

          By contrast, the US Federal Government provides unbiased statistical data, broken out by race and sex, on factors such as education (e.g. high school and college graduation rates), unemployment (e.g. as of November, 2011, white women are at 7.8%, black men are at 15.5% – Bureau of Labor Statistics), victims of violence (black men are victims 4x as often as white women, per US DOJ), murder victims (black men are victims 4x more often than white women, per DOJ), incarceration rates, single parent households, and similar factors which show that white women have the advantage over black men by a wide margin in every area.

          • MorgainePendragon says:

            Links to peer-reviewed studies, please.

            • The government is not funded by a biased organization as studies usually are. Govenrment data is more honest and trustworthy.

              Murder, per the US Bureau of Justice Statistics

              “Males were almost 4 times more likely than females to be murdered in 2005.”
              http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/gender.cfm

              “In 2005, homicide victimization rates for blacks were 6 times higher than the rates for whites.

              Black males are the most likely murder victims; white females the least likely murder victims.

              http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/homicide/race.cfm

              +++++++++++++++++
              Unemployment, per the Bureau of Labor Statistics

              Black Men: 15.5% in November, 2011

              White Women: 7.8% in November, 2011

              http://www.bls.gov/news.release/empsit.t01.htm

              +++++++++++++++++++

              Violent Crime Victims, per US Bureau of Justice Statistics

              “Violence against males, blacks, and persons age 24 or younger occurred at higher or somewhat higher rates than the rates of violence against females, whites, and persons age 25 or older in 2009.”

              http://bjs.ojp.usdoj.gov/content/glance/vsx2.cfm

              ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++

              Education, per the US Dept. of Education

              “From 1998–99 to 2008–09, the percentage of degrees earned by females fluctuated between 61 and 62 percent for associate’s degrees and remained steady around 57 percent for bachelor’s degrees. In contrast, both the percentage of master’s and the percentage of doctoral degrees earned by females increased during this period (from 58 to 60 percent and from 43 to 52 percent, respectively).”

              http://nces.ed.gov/fastfacts/display.asp?id=72

            • Peter Houlihan says:

              Because if tenured professors of women’s studies publish something factually incorrect, grossly sexist and biased beyond belief they immediately loose their job and credibility. This pressure only to publish established fact is what keeps dogma and prejudice out of the feminist academy. Oh wait…

          • I’m a black woman and I dont even think much of the underachievement of black men is due to racism, if that’s what you are getting at. Women in general are overtaking men in academics bc academics is very feminized. Much of the problem is the low standard foisted upon black men as well as the family/dating structure.

            • Julie Gillis says:

              Alice, an honest question here not snark.

              How do we create an academy that is neither M nor F? Go backwards and have women not go to college? What purpose could it serve? Why, if academics has women within it, is it feminized? I don’t know what that means? Will you elaborate?

  10. The Bad Man says:

    @Hugo, You’re an academic so I assume that you have read the study on multi-tasking. Can you please provide further insight on the methodology and some examples of what is and isn’t considered multi-tasking? Since women do the bulk of child care (on average but not necessarily for individuals) then anything type of housework while there is a child in the house could be considered multi-tasking.
    As an example of a traditional gender division in housework:

    Woman watches children play while folding laundry or making dinner = multi-tasking
    Man mowing the lawn ≠ multi-tasking

    That is exactly what most women want for division of labor. I can’t find any women who are interested in mowing my lawn, collecting firewood, cleaning the pool, picking weeds or digging up my garden? I’m sure there are a few out there but I’m not holding my breath. Do you think they would be satisfied that I watched the kids and made dinner for them?

    • spidaman3 says:

      how about changing my oil, fixing my water pump, and changing my tires?

    • MorgainePendragon says:

      “I can’t find any women who are interested in mowing my lawn, collecting firewood, cleaning the pool, picking weeds or digging up my garden?”

      *raising hand* I AM.

      I would MUCH rather cut the grass, cut and collect firewood, weed and dig in the garden, than traditional “women’s” work. Also change the oil in the car, tune it up (at least before computerised timers and all that crap), etc.

      If you will cook, do the dishes, vacuum, mop, clean the toilet, take care of the shitty diapers (and no disposables please, I want to leave a decent planet for next generations), organise the doctor and dentist appointments, the car pool, the play dates, the PTA and teacher conferences–and much of this while watching the children– I’ll do ALL that other stuff.

      Hell, I’ll build the add-on to the house, insulate it, paint it, and move the furniture into it.

      [oh, yes, just saw that, Spidey; also "changing my oil, fixing my water pump, and changing my tires?" But why are they YOURS? Why aren't they OURS?]

      • Peter Houlihan says:

        You have your house, he wants his car.

        I’ve done all those things, cooking isn’t hard, changing diapers doesn’t need a degree, I do my own laundry and washing (as well as frequently that of my female hosuemates). I’d happily sit at home and keep house.

        Trouble is, women objectify men in terms of their earnings. If I want to get married some day, and have a kid like my housemate, I have to start making big bucks. Changing gender roles isn’t something men have to do by breaking open the old boys clubs and doing more stuff at home. Its what *both* genders have to do by sharing responsibilities. If I said to a girl that my ambition in life was to be a house husband she’d smile, possibly say how nice it was to hear that, and move over to the guy who wants to be a lawyer. Sexism and reenforcement of TGRs is a two way street, and can’t be solved by blaming one gender.

  11. “Men still do less than their full fair share. . .”

    Myth.

    The facts, per Time Magazine:

    “According to data just released by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, men and women in 2010 who were married, childless and working full time (defined by the BLS as more than 35 hours a week) had combined daily totals of paid and unpaid work — which is to say, work at the office and all the drudgery you have to do at home — that were almost exactly the same: 8 hr. 11 min. for men, 8 hr. 3 min. for women.”

    Men actually work slightly longer than women, and die five (5) years younger as thanks.

    • I think the statistics that say women do more work are when kids come into play. Often when both parents work outside the home (and an equal number of hours) the woman ends up with more extra hours of work related to caring for the children and the home. I think I recall recently seeing that things have greatly improved, though, and that working fathers now do 80% of the household work that working mothers do, so the gap may be narrowing.

      • So the Multitasking Myth is just WMD?

        As I said – Dump the Multitasking and call it Domestitasking.

        It will help the media out – they have never been very good at making distinctions or research when it comes to sensational headlines. P^)

      • “I think the statistics that say women do more work are when kids come into play.”

        Not according to the DOJ data, as per the above.

        But, really, why do people want to butt into other people’s family affairs and choices? What business is it of mine (for examplr) to tell someone else’s wife that shes not doing enough? They are consenting adults. Why can’t people learn to stay out of consenting adults private affairs?

  12. John Sctoll says:

    Wow, where to begin.

    Every major study over the last 5 years has shown that when ALL work is calculated, men and women are virtually equal. Those same studies also leave out Yard work, car/home repairs etc (traditional and normally male jobs). They also do a terrible job as well of defining work in only hours spent at it. IOW, if I spend 5 hours doing work, it doesn’t take into account the effort required to do the job, the weather conditions etc. But it doesn’t matter because men and women are virtually even.

    AND still Hugo finds a way to make it seem as though men aren’t doing their fair share.

    I am sorry HUGO but this might come off as a personal attack but WTF Man, do you ever ever ever make women responsible for anything, MEN are not always at fault, sometimes women are too.

    • “do you ever ever ever make women responsible for anything, MEN are not always at fault, sometimes women are too.”

      Give it up pal.  You’re wasting your time.  He teaches feminism/gender studies.  As long as the philosophy is based on that men will always be at fault.  Always.

       But, you made an interesting point about outside work.  I didn’t realize they don’t count outside work.  I live on a large wooded lot, with lots of landscaping to do, grass to cut, and gazillion leaves to deal with every fall.  So, all spring, summer, and fall I’m outside doing all kinds of crap I really don’t like.  In the fall I literally have hundreds of thousands of leaves to deal with.  When I used to bag them, it was about 50 38 gallon leaf bags. (I now mulch)
       
      I spend not only significantly more time working overall but expend far more energy than my wife does.  But, I’m not complaining.   That’s life, and it’s part of caring for the people I love the most.   It would be silly, selfish, and betray a lack of love for me to start counting hours spent and calories burned in comparison to her, and tell her she’s not doing “her fair share.”

    • I think in most relationships, a division of labor works best. A lot of women, honestly, do more housework because they have different standards than the guy about how clean they want things to be. I’m generalizing, obviously, but it’s been the case in every relationship I’ve had. I’ll think the tub looks disgusting and clean it out because I don’t even want to step in it. My boyfriend really doesn’t notice the mold until it is big enough to take prisoners. I can bitch at him about the tub, but it just doesn’t bother him. Whereas I freak at the slightest sign of mold and grab the Lysol. However, my boyfriend does a lot of stuff that frankly I would hire someone to do, like cleaning leaves off the roof. You have to find a balance.

  13. Lawns need mowing and gutters need cleaning a good deal less often than meals need preparing and diapers need changing. Year round, “outside” work will always involve less effort and time than inside work. When we talk about the gendered division of labor being unequal, that time differential matters.

    • So there is the implicit assumption that gets peddled by a bad study with bias, that men sit about as the grass grows and women are doing diapers and whipping up tasty dishes at the same time?

      Bad use of data and studies is damaging and perpetuates stereotypes.

      If the study has any value what so ever it would include all work types and locations and even analyze gender preferences – not exclude and skew all results.

      As for outdoor work requiring less effort – what is that claim based upon?

      The claim of less time – what is that based upon?

      I could see the claims being valid if all the study participants lived in apartments with no garden, balcony, roof terrace – but just making claims to cover over cracks in a faulty argument is – – well – - shabby!

    • The difference in my life is (and I suspect its the same for many) – I change quite a few diapers and cook quite a few meals. My wife never mows a lawn or cleans a gutter. In our life balance breaks out.

      Most of the studies that include ALL work (paid and unpaid) show that we arent an exception.

    • Peter Houlihan says:

      So its my responsibility to earn a woman’s keep, aswell as perform equal labour inside the home? When women, on average, take equal *responsibility* for household earnings I’ll be convinced.

  14. OK. First – I didn’t read all the comments, so apologies if I’m repeating someone else (most likely am).

    It’s not that I am saying Good Men aren’t doing enough. There are SO MANY *people* who are AWESOME. Just plain AWESOME – and BEING the change they want to see. Done, period, full stop.

    To say that the patriarchy isn’t over is NOT to disclaim their efforts. Please don’t see it as badmouthing them, and I for one don’t mean to lump everyone in together. The point is not, “oh look men still suck” or “wow you guys are kinda trying” the point is to say that YES some people (men and women) are amazing and doing awesome – but it’s not over. It’s just not.

    And, personally, I find it heartbreaking to hear people say feminism is part of the problem (but that’s a side note. Kind of.)

    I am telling you it isn’t over as a woman. I am telling you we still have work to do FROM MY EXPERIENCES and those of women around me. I will not quote statistics to you, and I think many of them are already here. But I can tell you that sexism against women and misogyny has gone underground, has become more subtle, less obvious. But it’s still there. It still makes a difference in women’s lives every. single. day.

    We can come to that, together as people, or we can have conversations about who has things worse and who is working harder and what kind of labels are wrong. *shrug*. Your choice. And when I say that, I’m not being a feminist bitch. I’m not angry at anyone or trying to call you a dick. I’m just telling you my reality, and I’m asking for your help. Yes, I still need it – and yes, I believe the Good Men Project is helping.

    • Peter Houlihan says:

      Glad to hear you see men as part of the solution rather than the problem :)

      At risk of repeating myself, whatabouttehmenz?

      When commentators emphasise sexism against women and misogeny I can’t help but feel that they’re implying that sexism against men and misandry aren’t real problems, or to go even further, part of the same problem. Maybe it would make more sense to attack “sexism” and “TGRs” rather than just the bits that effect women?

      That said, I’m in. -places hand on the pile-

  15. Hi…sorry if I missed something here, but I didn’t see much distinction being between the end of a systemized misogyny (patriarchy in this discussion), the end of men and the end of a specific definition of masculinity. Feminists don’t hate men and most of the ones I know aren’t interested in fighting with them or having debates about the “end” of them. I, for one, am dedicated to fighting against patriarchal and paternalistic cultures because they are bad for both men and women. The classic and crippling John Wayne-esque definition of masculinity that captures much of 20th century America’s idea of what men are like has been challenged and found wanting by both men and women. This challenge and redefinition is often reinterpreted to mean the same thing as the “end of men”. I think that talking about chore wars or women’s success in college or boys troubles in elementary school are classic zero-sum game canards that distract us from two ideas: 1) things are improving for women, but by no means do we have gender equity and 2) If men are feeling under assault as the result of rapid shifts in culture that we’ve experienced during the past 50 years I understand, but it’s not about gender polarization and “war” but quite the opposite – it’s about exploring gender confluence and how that gets manifested in life and culture. Gender confluence’s benefits are more obviously understood to serve women, but because we generally don’t explore what the benefits of change for men would be (because they typically involve traditionally “feminine” aspects) we are unable to consider the benefits to men. Patriarchy isn’t any living man’s “fault” and assigning blame is a waste of time. You’re either interested in changing the way things are or you’re not. So no, not the end of men at all.

    • Julie Gillis says:

      A brilliant response. Should go on Tom’s piece and Lisa’s as well. I’d love to see you write more on this, the concept of gender confluence.

      • Julie Gillis says:

        “I think that talking about chore wars or women’s success in college or boys troubles in elementary school are classic zero-sum game canards that distract us from two ideas: 1) things are improving for women, but by no means do we have gender equity and 2) If men are feeling under assault as the result of rapid shifts in culture that we’ve experienced during the past 50 years I understand, but it’s not about gender polarization and “war” but quite the opposite – it’s about exploring gender confluence and how that gets manifested in life and culture.”

        Brilliant.

      • MorgainePendragon says:

        Yes, Soraya, brilliant, and I wish I’d read it before I wrote my ham-fisted response.

        Yours is much more eloquent and subtle, yet equally accurate.

        Thank you.

    • Peter Houlihan says:

      Well said, do you recognise that said system was also institutionalised misandry? I have issues with the word patriarchy, I think it is fundamentally man blaming, but if traditional gender roles are on the way out, who cares what we call the.

      I think it would be more accurate to say that not all feminists hate men, alot do. Just as I’m forced to admit many masculists hate women. Its an unavoidable bi-product of a polarised gender debate.

      I think the conclusions about the “end of men” and the “gender war” are because when the focus is on women’s rights and men’s responsibilities, men’s rights and women’s responsibilities are getting left behind. I think things will catch up, equality won’t happen until men are free too. But coversely: until men are free equality won’t happen.

  16. @Eric
    Feminism is not anti-male

    • Unfortunately, anti-male is where it starts, and gets worse from there. There is abundant evidence of that fact, including in many articles and comments here.

  17. “The difference in my life is (and I suspect its the same for many) – I change quite a few diapers and cook quite a few meals. My wife never mows a lawn or cleans a gutter. In our life balance breaks out.”

    Same here. I’ve changed hundreds of diapers, including 100% of the overnight diaper changes. I gave 100% of the nightly baths. I do most of the cleaning, about ½ the shopping, make 100% of the money, do 100% of home repairs and technology stuff, and do 100% of the outside work.

    But, never in my 20 years of marriage have I complained, and I’m not about to start. We are a team. It doesn’t matter if the labor is 50/50. We work together to get what needs done, done, and know that we’re trying our best to take care of each other and the kids. I don’t see the advantage in keeping score.

    • MorgainePendragon says:

      Wow! Just think how much more you could do, Eric, if you didn’t spend so much time on here trolling against feminism and Hugo and anything else that challenges your nice, tight little view of the world.

      Actually, I feel a lot of compassion for you. For someone who claims to have it all SO together and SO balanced in your OWN domestic situation to STILL be SO angry and hostile and completely closed to any discussion that doesn’t cater to your particular values is a worrying sign.

      Have you consulted anyone about this problem you have?

      • I oppose discrimination, bigotry, and prejudice, and won’t hesitate to point it out when I see or read it. Sorry, but I don’t consider that to be a problem that needs consultation, and it’s unfortunate that it bothers you. By contrast, people who are angry and hostile launch personal attacks, just as you have done here. But, I won’t attack you in return.

      • Peter Houlihan says:

        Expressing sorrow for someone isn’t very credible when you attack them in the next sentence.

        Would you be willing to accept that some feminists are misandric?

        and @Eric: would you be willing to accept that feminists didn’t go out with misandry in mind, and that many feminists are also masculists? (you’re looking at one).

        • “would you be willing to accept that feminists didn’t go out with misandry in mind. . .”

          I try (albeit not always successfully) not to profess to know what people have in mind. All I can do is observe and assess their speech and actions.

          “many feminists are also masculists?”

          That certainly would balance things out, and is probably the only way to trully maintain balance and objectivity. However, I wonder what percentage of feminists are also masculists, and vice-versa? I’m not active in either movement but I have rarely heard of people who profess both.

  18. Richard Aubrey says:

    Comparing work as if it’s equal, except in hours put in is nonsense. Cleaning the gutters meant, for me, climbing onto the roof,two and a half stories. Crawling around on the slopes. Late enough in the season that all the leaves have fallen meant that some years the gutters were half frozen. Could only work them with my bare hands. Pitch the stuff off, then get down and rake it up and dispose of it. Tannic acid sometimes is sufficiently concentrated that the skin is severely irritated. Yup. Just like washing dishes, which is one of the things I’ve done for forty years.
    I really wonder who thinks they’re fooling anybody.
    I have been laid up with a detached retina for a couple of weeks. Means being as still as possible in one of two prescribed positions for twenty-two hours in the day. My wife said she hadn’t known how much I did around the house. Should be blowing my own horn, I suppose, if the Right Sort of People would allow it.
    And this was late enough in the fall that no yardwork was necessary and no snow had yet fallen and I was way ahead on firewood and even kindling.
    Maybe we should have an article on men keeping reproachful records and making sure everybody knows every time they do something more involved than opening another beer.

  19. Seeing tons of numbers… but what if it’s not about math? What if it’s not the fact that women make 80 cents on the male dollar or than men do 80% of the housework/child-raising.

    What if it’s really about a tipping point that we haven’t reached yet, but have gotten much closer to, when these disparities no longer feel like “the norm?”

    How would statistics show that salient moment when the vast majority of men simply accept that doing work round the house was as much their job as their partner’s and that employers no longer assume they can get a woman to do the same job for less. Because it won’t be when those numbers hit 100%… since they never will. Just as there will never zero prejudice or an end to murder or any other utopian ideal.

    All we can hope for is continue’d progress with some watershed moments as the inequities of our past transition from established to merely condoned… to expected… to frowned upon… to no longer tolerated.

    It will take a lot of good men… and good women to make it happen, but I don’t know how many, because I don’t think it’s about math.

    • “employers no longer assume they can get a woman to do the same job for less.”

      Since the majority of employers are women, do you truly believe that these hiring manager women “assume they can get a woman to do the same job for less?” What is your evidence for this claim?

    • The statistics ALREADY show that men do as much work as women. The data are in. The disparity is non existant. QED- if men are already doing as much work they believe that they should do equal work! The tipping point has been reached. Any further and we’ll have inequality of another type.

      Decisions and actions should be taken based on data when they are available. It is irrational to make decisions based on feelings when you have perfectly good data available.

  20. Richard Aubrey says:

    Hard to tell if Shawn knows better or has been fooled by activists. If you could get women to do the same job for twenty percent less, there’d be no unemployed women. There are lots of other reasons he’s got it wrong, too, but that’s the simplest.
    Who says guys don’t accept the fact that doing work around the house is as much their jobs as it is women’s?
    Seems as if we’ve had a number of commenters contradicting it but Shawn acts as if his talking points are sealed against reality.

  21. Jun Kafiotties says:

    First of all your studies are highly biased, they ignore male chores becuase they are “enjoyable”, Umm any chore can be enjoyed, it doesn’t negate it’s value. There are female commentators who enjoy washing the dishes, raising the kids, does that mean we ignore their contribution too?

    http://newsfeed.time.com/2011/07/21/time-cover-story-why-men-and-women-should-end-the-chore-wars/

    Outside and inside work aren’t always comparable either, Inside the house I can have airconditioning and remain at a comfortable temperature but outside atm, it’s 34degree’s “feels like 40″ due to humidity, an hour outside and I have sweat 2 litres, exhausted a lot of energy yet inside I can do FAR FAR more. You can also do outside work WITH the children, multitasking since you’re caring for them still. I know of people with large property who’d put their kids in the side seat, or lap and let them steer when slashing (mowing on a tractor, for very large areas).

    So if you discount any enjoyable activity then you might as well discount childcare because many women enjoy that as I CONSTANTLY HEAR. The studies you link are biased, your entire message is biased, I really am surprised you are a gender studies teacher because quite frankly you throw men to the wolves and focus so much on the women that it’s truly a very biased view.

    Trying to compare jobs that are different, where one uses far more energy than another is another problem. If someone is in a labor intensive job, they can do 5 hours of work and use twice the energy as someone working 10 hours in a quite cushy and comfortable job. Now trying to compare male and female work, without taking into account the differences in workload between each individual job IS quite stupid. Work isn’t about hours in the job, it could be that men are exerting much more energy and their workload is much higher than women, but in a shorter period of time so in reality women work LONGER, men work overall HARDER. This isn’t a fact however since I don’t have, or haven’t seen any study that takes this into account.

    “Men still do less than their full fair share”
    Men do the majority of defending, aquiring, and controlling resources (war), men have done their fair share and continue to do it. Males are still heavily on the front line defending the rest of society and whilst I agree we need more female soldiers there, ATM males are doing the majority of it. Males also do the majority of very risky jobs, they sacrifice themselves in jobs women don’t seem to be wanting to do (a problem yes). I’d say if anything, females aren’t doing their fair share of defending society’s all over the planet. But even this is a silly thing to say because as a whole, we need someone making the weaponary and this is where women stepped up to the plate in WW2 for America.

    Bury your head all you want Hugo, but I do question if you ever study GENDER in an unbiased fashion. Your article is full of language blaming and shaming men, minimizing the hard work they do whilst elevating women on a pedestal. How about an article on how women aren’t doing their fair share of dangerous work and choosing safer careers whilst enjoying the benefits of male sacrifice?

    • “Bury your head all you want Hugo, but I do question if you ever study GENDER in an unbiased fashion? . . . Your article is full of language blaming and shaming men, . . . How about an article on how women aren’t doing their fair share of dangerous work and choosing safer careers whilst enjoying the benefits of male sacrifice?”

      Valid question but I disagree that the solution is to blame and shame women instead of men. What is needed is unbiased, balanced, and reasoned commentary which doesn’t unfairly and blame and shame boys/men or girls/women. That doesn’t help.

      We can all do better; let’s consider all the facts and finds ways to improve.

Trackbacks

  1. [...] GMP, I respond to Tom Matlack and to this Meghan Casserly piece in Forbes. See It’s Not the End of Men, and We Still Have Work to Do [...]

  2. [...] I read Meghan Casserly’s post on the Forbe’s blog. And Tom Matlack’s response. And Hugo Schwyzer’s response to both. [...]

  3. [...] and serving poached testicles for dinner. Good Men Project founder, Tom Matlack, and columnist, Hugo Schwyzer, have offered their thoughts on Meghan’s Forbes piece. My sentiments lie more with Tom’s [...]

  4. [...] It’s Not the End of Men, and We Still Have Work To Do [...]

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