Thursday, April 8, 2010

Update on Male Studies Symposium

Well not really an update since I didn't go to or view the conference (I just emailed the contact address on the site to ask if it was recorded for future viewing) but just an amazing first (well at least among the first at least) looks at the conference by Jessica Bennett and Jesse Ellison of Newsweek. And I have to say that I am not the least bit surprised.

As you can see from their telling of going to the conference their biases were already set.
And when we went to the ferry’s taxi area, we were literally rushed by dozens of cabbies desperate to drive us. We chose, natch, the only woman in the bunch. Her cab turned out to be a minivan, and her mother and daughter were already in it.
Bias? What bias? We're just two women heading to a conference on male studies that intentional dodged all the male cabbies until we could find a woman. No discrimination at all, we swear.

But it really gets fun when they whip out their "highlights".
* The awesomely named Lionel Tiger, a professor at Rutgers, said that the “academic lives of men are systematically discriminated against.” Yes, boys lag behind girls in school, but is this really because of active discrimination? Later, Professor Tiger bemoaned the roles of both rape educators on campus (who teach boys that they’re “predators” as soon as they begin college) and violence against women organizations (who, get ready, don’t track statistics on violence against men).
* His co-moderator, Christina Hoff Sommers, from the American Enterprise Institute, said that feminists “constantly try to knock down doors that are already open and it’s young men who pay the price.” She also said that the majority of the voices in women’s studies programs and doing research on women are not “fair minded,” and that professors in those fields routinely present fabricated statistics.
* An online commenter said, during the discussion, that the reason women haven’t admitted that they’ve won the battle is, “were feminists to declare victory, they would lose their eternal status as victims.”
* We rode the ferry back with Roy Den Hollander, the semi-notorious lawyer who’s on a crusade against women’s rights. There is a LOT more to his story, and to say about him, but the short version is that when he wasn’t talking about how he prefers the term “feminazis” to “feminism,” he’s actually a really lovely guy. We sorta think he’s just heartbroken.
Yeah that's all. A two hour presentation meant to get the ball rolling on the concept of male studies and the best these two could come up with was accuse them of trying to blame feminism (but frankly the way some of them act you'd think it was a cardinal sin to speak of feminism in any way expect for envious praise). There might have been some there but with the material that I saw in the Male Studies site I'm betting that there was a whole lot more going on than that.

Hopefully there will be a way to view it for myself because I get the feeling that this is a gross misrepresentation (and nitpick) of what really happened.


uremo said...

Just wanted to say despite the lack of comments here, you have a nice blog here.

Due to the fact that I prefer my privacy, I'll just say I talk to you every now and again at Feminist Critics and leave it at that.

Danny said...

Thanks for compliment. Although now you have inflicted me with curiosity as to who you are. You could get my email address of my main page and let me know that way.

But thanks for the compliment anyway.

Paul said...

Personally, I'm convinced they didn't even go to the symposium. The wrote a grand total of a page and a half on it... absolutely none of which couldn't have been found out from any synopsis. Well, except for the fact that they took a female cabbie, which I absolutely was DYING to know about.

Danny said...

Thanks for dropping by Paul. I emailed the contact address at the Male Studies site and according to them they will have recordings available in a few days. That will give a good chance to prove the haters wrong once and for all.