Unfortunately, some segments of the men’s movement, such as men’s rights groups and followers of Robert Bly’s mythopoetic movement, seem less focused on dismantling patriarchy and more focused on, in bell hook’s (1992) words, “the production of a kind of masculinity that can be safely expressed within patriarchal boundaries. She further explains that the most frightening aspect of the contemporary men’s movement, particularly as it is expressed in popular culture, is the depoliticization of the struggle to end sexism and sexist oppression and the replacing of that struggle with a focus on personal self-actualization. She suggests that the men’s movement should not beseparate from the women’s movement but instead become a segment under the larger feminist movement. In this way men would not be taking center stage in yet another part of women’s lives allowing a slightly more subtle form of domination to continue.
Paul Smith, who co-authored the book Men in Feminism suggested recently in Cultronix that men should not be in feminism but nearby. He challenges men to think of feminism working on them. But this cannot be done without changing, not only how men relate to other men, but how we relate to women as well. Perhaps men need to be “menists,” supporting women in their feminist work while allowing feminism to work on them, challenging themselves and other men to end patriarchy. In this way feminist theory and practice could be a catalyst for liberating both men and women from their restrictive gender roles and the system of patriarchy.
Also, with white allies—don’t try to bug your whiteness on us.
AKA WHAT EVERY ~FEMINIST~ ON TUMBLR WORTH THEIR SALT HAS BEEN SAYING