Signifying the Manosphere
June 23, 2022 4:50 AM   Subscribe

F.D Signifier has a two-part video series on the manosphere. Part 1, Dissecting the Manosphere, covers white male intersectionality, edgelords, nihilism, ideal hegemonic masculinity, patriarchal dividend, aggrieved entitlement, and the contrasts between the white and black manospheres. Part 2, Connecting the Manosphere, covers Gary Vee, Fresh and Fit, Jordan Peterson, spree shooters, Eren Yeager, and what the left needs to do better. If you'd rather read than watch videos, he has a reading list: posted by clawsoon (5 comments total) 40 users marked this as a favorite
Saving this for later.

There's only so much of this sort of thing I can stomach in one sitting.
posted by neuracnu at 8:39 AM on June 23 [5 favorites]

I grew up with male authority figures in my life who had been deeply traumatized, who had never been given the tools or encouragement to confront that and heal from it (because after all, Men Don't Have Feelings), and who therefore could not control their anger and subjected those around them to frightening outbursts. And as such, I have spent most of my adult life frightened and distrustful of traditional notions of masculinity. Yet even that did not stop me from weaponizing my own white, cishet masculine privilege as a younger man, usually by saying disgusting and hurtful things in an "ironic" way that was actually me subconsciously flexing my white patriarchal privilege and testing the limits of how much casual cruelty I could get away with.

I have thought a lot about the notion of toxic masculinity. Specifically, I have thought about the possibility that masculinity by its very nature is inherently toxic. But that, I think, is not the truth. What I now believe is that masc and femme are neither good nor bad, and that there is no such thing as a genuine "masculine virtue" that cannot be generalized to a fundamental human virtue, nor is there any genuine "feminine virtue" that cannot be generalized to a fundamental human virtue. In other words, if is not a virtue that every human of every gender ought to aspire to, then it is no virtue at all.

If there is a "crisis of masculinity," it is not for any of the reasons that right wingers cite. It is (primarily) because patriarchy is an arbitrarily assigned hierarchy and hierarchy is immoral, and it is (secondarily) because the rules of patriarchy train masc-assigned people from early childhood that they are required to be illiterate of their own emotional lives and to avoid communicating their emotions.
posted by cubeb at 10:46 AM on June 23 [4 favorites]

bell hooks has an excellent book I've been reading the past few days about masculinity, love, and feminism, The Will to Change.
posted by shenkerism at 11:09 AM on June 23 [4 favorites]

It is (primarily) because patriarchy is an arbitrarily assigned hierarchy and hierarchy is immoral

I would agree that it's immoral, but I wouldn't agree that it's arbitrary: It's organized around the ability to effectively deploy violence. That's not arbitrary; some people are better at it than others. It's a meritocracy of violence, if you will. Because of that, I think there's something to the connection between 9/11, the American military response, and patriarchal resurgence.
posted by clawsoon at 1:23 PM on June 23 [1 favorite]

F.D. Signifier is great. I also recommend his video on Bo Burnham's Inside, which is really about much more than that and doesn't require familiarity with the album.
posted by Comet Bug at 7:51 PM on June 23

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