There are so many recent examples of prestigious establishment media outlets publishing absolutely bonkers essays that could only have been produced by people so impacted by toxic ideologies that they are not properly oriented toward reality and actually belong in mental hospitals that it’s become impossible to link, and marvel at, them all. So I’m simply going to try to pick the occasional particularly exceptionally deranged example.
Toxic masculinity is built into the fabric of our urban spaces, writes Leslie Kern, author of new book Feminist City. And the results arenâ€™t just divisive â€“ they can be lethal
Glass ceilings and phallic towers. Mean streets and dark alleys. Road names and statues of men. From the physical to the metaphorical, the city is filled with reminders of masculine power. And yet we rarely talk of the urban landscape as an active participant in gender inequality. A building, no matter how phallic, isnâ€™t actually misogynist, is it? Surely a skyscraper isnâ€™t responsible for sexual harassment, the wage gap, or even the glass ceiling, whether it has a literal one up top or not?
That said, our built environments can still reflect patterns of gender-based discrimination. To imagine the city and its structures as neutral places where complicated human social relations are staged is to ignore the simple fact that people built these places. As the feminist geographer Jane Darke has said: â€œOur cities are patriarchy written in stone, brick, glass and concrete.â€ In other words, cities reflect the norms of the societies that build them. And sexism is a deep-rooted norm.
As far back as 1977, an American poet and professor of architecture named Dolores Hayden wrote an article with the explosive headline â€œSkyscraper seduction, skyscraper rapeâ€. Hayden tore into the male power fantasies embodied in this celebrated urban form. The office tower, she wrote, is one more addition â€œto the procession of phallic monuments in history â€“ including poles, obelisks, spires, columns and watchtowersâ€, where architects un-ironically use the language of â€œbase, shaft and tipâ€ while drawing upward-thrusting buildings ejaculating light into the night sky.
If the sexism of the city began and ended with architectural symbolism, I wouldâ€™ve happily written a grad school essay about this then turned my attention to more pressing matters. But societyâ€™s historical and ongoing ideas about the proper gender roles for men and women (organised along a narrow binary) are built right into our cities â€“ and they still matter.
All versions of Leftism seem to boil down to pathological self-absorption, leading to the concoction of the most far-fetched sort of grievances, flattering the leftist’s self-importance and providing leverage for his (or her) gaining power through the guilt and sympathy of the normal majority.
These days, I seem to keep stumbling upon items which astound and boggle the mind, provoking the thoroughly depressing reflection that the establishment of the last mid-century, so commonly criticized for materialism, conformity, and anti-intellectualism, today looking backward seemed so optimistic and healthy and rational when compared to its totally-deranged contemporary replacement.
When you read this item blithely celebrating the implausible notion that women can separate themselves from Nature and Biology by a simple exercise of existential choice, you might think that NBC News these days is recruiting its editorial talent straight out of the looney bin, but no! Dr. Marcie Bianco is “an associate editor at the Stanford Social Innovation Review. She was formerly the Editorial & Communications Manager at the Clayman Institute for Gender Research at Stanford University, where she served as editor-in-chief of the monthly newsletter, Gender News, and the annual print publication, upRising, in addition to being the founder of the Clayman Institute Feminist Journalism Writing Fellowship.”
It’s not just NBC News, the crazies are running Harvard, Yale, and Stanford.
Over the past week, an assortment of trending stories â€” from Jeffrey Epstein to the Dayton and El Paso mass shooters, to Miley Cyrusâ€™s separation and Julianne Houghâ€™s declaration that sheâ€™s â€œnot straightâ€ â€” together have laid bare the strictures of an American patriarchy on the edge of a nervous breakdown. As the status quo, heterosexuality is just not working.
As a snapshot of 2019 America, these stories present a startling picture: Men continue to coerce, harass, rape and kill girls and women â€” and go to extreme lengths to avoid responsibility for their actions. On the other side of the issue, girls and women are challenging heterosexuality, and even absconding from it altogether.
Framed differently, the picture is this: Men need heterosexuality to maintain their societal dominance over women. Women, on the other hand, are increasingly realizing not only that they donâ€™t need heterosexuality, but that it also is often the bedrock of their global oppression.
Patriarchy is at its most potent when oppression doesnâ€™t feel like oppression, or when it is packaged in terms of biology, religion, or basic social needs.
Patriarchy is at its most potent when oppression doesnâ€™t feel like oppression, or when it is packaged in terms of biology, religion or basic social needs like security comfort, acceptance and success. Heterosexuality offers women all these things as selling points to their consensual subjection.
Historically, women have been conditioned to believe that heterosexuality is natural or innate, just as they have been conditioned to believe that their main purpose is to make babies â€” and if they fail to do so, they are condemned as not â€œreal,â€ or as bad, women.
Celebrities are not always at the vanguard of feminist thought, but both Julianne Hough and Miley Cyrus have recently spoken out about sexuality in ways that puts the power â€” and responsibility â€” back into their own hands.
Yale Professor Cleanth Brooks 1906-1994, leading figure of the New Criticism.
In Quillette, Claire Lehmann interviews Camille Paglia on the current state of the Humanities in the universities, Leftist Ressentiment as Religion, and Feminism.
Claire Lehmann: You seem to be one of the only scholars of the humanities who are willing to challenge the post-structuralist status quo. Why have other humanities academics been so spineless in preserving the integrity of their fields?
Camille Paglia: The silence of the academic establishment about the corruption of Western universities by postmodernism and post-structuralism has been an absolute disgrace. First of all, the older generation of true scholars who still ruled the roost when I arrived at the Yale Graduate School in 1968 were not fighters, to begin with. American professors, unlike their British counterparts, had not been schooled in ferocious and satirical debate. They were courtly and genteel, a High Protestant middlebrow style. Voices were hushed, and propriety ruled at the Yale department of English: I once described it as â€œwalking on eggs at the funeral home.â€
An ossified New Criticism was then still ascendant. I had been trained in college in that technique of microscopic close analysis of the text, and it remains a marvelous tool for cultural criticism: I have applied it to everything from painting to pop songs. However, my strong view at the time (from my early grounding in archaeology) was that literary criticism had to recover authentic historical consciousness and also to expand toward psychology, which was still considered vulgar. Harold Bloom and Geoffrey Hartman (whose Yale careers had begun amid tinges of anti-Semitism) were moving in a different, more conceptual direction, heavy on European philosophy.
By the early 1970s, when I was writing my doctoral dissertation (Sexual Personae, directed by Bloom), change suddenly arrived from outside: deconstruction was the hot new thing, hastened along by J. Hillis Miller, who left Johns Hopkins for Yale. I thought Derrida and DeMan and the rest of that crew were arrant nonsense from the start, a pedantic diversion from direct engagement with art. About the obsequious Yale welcome given to the pratlings of one continental â€œstarâ€ visitor, I acidly remarked to a fellow grad student sitting next to me, â€œTheyâ€™re like high priests murmuring to each other.â€
The New Criticism desperately needed supplementation, but that opaque hash (so divorced from genuine art appreciation) was certainly not it. I was disgusted at the rapid spread of deconstruction and post-structuralism throughout elite U.S. universities in the 1970s, when I was teaching at my first job at Bennington College. The reason it happened is really quite prosaic: a recession hit in the 1970s, and the job market in academe collapsed. Fancy-pants post-structuralism was the ticket to ride for ambitious, beady-eyed young careerists on the make. Its coy, showy gestures and clotted lingo were insidersâ€™ badges of claimed intellectual superiority. But the whole lot of them were mediocrities from the start. It is doubtful that much if any of their work will have long-term traction.
As I argued in my long attack on post-structuralism, â€œJunk Bonds and Corporate Raiders: Academe in the Hour of the Wolfâ€ (Arion, Spring 1991; reprinted in my first essay collection, Sex, Art, and American Culture), Lacan, Derrida, and Foucault were already outmoded thinkers even in France, where their prominence had been relatively brief. There was nothing genuinely leftist in their elitist, monotonously language-based analysis. On the contrary, post-structuralism was abjectly reactionary, resisting and reversing the true revolution of the 1960s American counterculture, which liberated the senses and reconnected the body and personal identity to nature, in the Romantic manner. It is very telling that Foucaultâ€™s principal inspiration, by his own admission, was Samuel Beckettâ€™s Waiting for Godot, which I loathed as a college student for its postwar passivity and nihilism. (As a teacher, I admire Godot as a play but still reject its parochial and at times juvenile world-view.)
Post-structuralism, along with identity politics, made huge gains in the 1970s, as the old guard professors proved helpless against a rising tide of rapid add-on programs and departments like womenâ€™s studies and African-American studies. The tenured professoriate seemed not to realize that change of some kind was necessary, and thus they failed to provide an alternative vision of a remodeled university of the future. I myself was lobbying for interdisciplinary innovation in the humanitiesâ€”something that remained highly controversial right through the 1980s, when there were fierce battles over it where I was then teaching (during the merger of the Philadelphia College of Performing Arts with the Philadelphia College of Art to form the present University of the Arts). Another persistent proposal of mine has been for comparative religion to become the undergraduate core curriculum, an authentically global multiculturalism
Most established professors in the 1970s probably believed that the new theory trend was a fad that would blow away like autumn leaves. The greatness of the complex and continuous Western tradition seemed self-evident: the canon would surely stand, even if supplemented by new names. Well, guess what? Helped along by a swelling horde of officious, overpaid administrators, North American universities became, decade by decade, political correctness camps. Out went half the classics, as well as pedagogically useful survey courses demonstrating sequential patterns in history (now dismissed as a â€œfalse narrativeâ€ by callow theorists). Bookish, introverted old-school professors were not prepared for guerrilla warfare to defend basic scholarly principles or to withstand waves of defamation and harassment.
However, it is indeed difficult to understand why major professors already in safe, powerful positions avoided direct combat. For example, although he had made passing dismissive remarks about post-structuralism (â€œFoucault and soda waterâ€), Harold Bloom never systematically engaged or critiqued the subject or used his access to the general media to endorse debate, which was left instead to self-identified conservatives. The latter situation was clearly counterproductive, insofar as it enabled the bourgeois faux leftists of academe to define themselves and their reflex gobbledygook as boldly progressive.
Nevertheless, the poisons of post-structuralism have now spread throughout academe and have done enormous damage to basic scholarly standards and disastrously undermined belief even in the possibility of knowledge. I suspect history will not be kind to the leading professors who appear to have put loyalty to friends and colleagues above defending scholarly values during a chaotic era of overt vandalism that has deprived several generations of students of a profound education in the humanities. The steady decline in humanities majors is an unmistakable signal that this once noble field has become a wasteland.
Do you believe that politics and in particular social justice (i.e., anti-racism and feminism) are becoming cults or pseudo-religions? Is politics filling the void left by the receding influence of organized religion?
Paglia: This has certainly been my view for many years now. I said in the introduction to my art book, Glittering Images (2012), that secular humanism has failed. As an atheist, I have argued that if religion is erased, something must be put in its place. Belief systems are intrinsic to human intelligence and survival. They â€œframeâ€ the flux of primary experience, which would otherwise flood the mind.
But politics cannot fill the gap. Society, with which Marxism is obsessed, is only a fragment of the totality of life. As I have written, Marxism has no metaphysics: it cannot even detect, much less comprehend, the enormity of the universe and the operations of nature. Those who invest all of their spiritual energies in politics will reap the whirlwind. The evidence is all around usâ€”the paroxysms of inchoate, infantile rage suffered by those who have turned fallible politicians into saviors and devils, godlike avatars of Good versus Evil.
My substitute for religion is art, which I have expanded to include all of popular culture. But when art is reduced to politics, as has been programmatically done in academe for 40 years, its spiritual dimension is gone. It is coarsely reductive to claim that value in the history of art is always determined by the power plays of a self-referential social elite. I take Marxist social analysis seriously: Arnold Hauserâ€™s Marxist, multi-volume A Social History of Art (1951) was a major influence on me in graduate school. However, Hauser honored art and never condescended to it. A society that respects neither religion nor art cannot be called a civilization.
John Davis reports that the Danish Government has been reduced to begging men, via advertising from the state travel agency, to have sex with Danish women.
Denmark, however, has fallen ill to a festering infection known as â€œfeminism.â€ It is the same illness that has taken hold of the rest of Scandanavia, Western Europe and the UK. Because of this gender infirmity, Denmarkâ€™s birth rate, and, its population growth, has been plummeting (as is true with most of Western Europe).
Feminism has given women in Denmark an immunity from civility, and, license to openly hate and ridicule men. For example, it is not uncommon for girls to be sitting on a bus, in a group, and have them openly point to a man and discuss how unattractive he is. The Danish legal system is set up so that once a woman has â€œbeen impregnatedâ€ by a man, the man is completely disposable in divorce, and, the manâ€™s role as a sperm donor is further degraded by requiring him to pay for the child for the rest of his life so that the impregnated woman may enjoy her fulfillment as a modern feminist.
Denmark still imposes all of the obligations of men that have survived medieval chivalry, yet, virtually sees men as nothing but completely disposable sperm donors (who are occasionally allowed to work in the Danish socialist job market).
Denmarkâ€™s feminist culture, laws and government view and treat men as nothing but disposable sperm donors.
The result is that only about 20% of Danish men are actively in the dating pool. Danish women are constantly complaining about not having enough men to satisfy their desires for sexual and social intercourse. Yet, Danish women will viciously guard their feminism, hatred of men, life plans to treat men as disposable, and the concept that men are irrelevant except to give the woman sperm, and, the child some semblance of legitimacy.
One with intellect, sensitivity, education (instead of the indoctrination that feminism requires) and human dignity might think that the solution to this problem would be to encourage women to learn something about human compassion, respect, human value beyond sex, and, the beauty of binding interpersonal relationships.
The Danish government doesnâ€™t have any of those problems . . . . Here is the Danish governmentâ€™s solution. This is just one advertisement of an intense propaganda campaign the Danish feminist government undertook to try to beg men to inseminate Danish women (for â€œMomâ€ and for â€œThe Stateâ€).
Spies Rejser is the Danish state travel agency.
Note how the advertisement features a prominent man-hating feminist in the narrative in order to appease the fascist feminist lobby that controls the countryâ€™s social laws and norms.
Note how the advertisement relegates the man to a mere decoration and accessory and sperm donor.
Adriana Ivancich, Hemingway, and friend in Finca Vigia, Cuba.
The life of Ernest Hemingway remains sufficiently fascinating that a new book has appeared, Andrea Di Robilantâ€™s Autumn in Venice: Ernest Hemingway and His Last Muse, chronicling the great man’s not-necessarily-ever-consummated infatuation at age 49 with an 18-year-old Italian countess.
That inappropriate relationship, ironically enough, provided the gravamen of Ernest Hemingway’s worst, only genuinely bad, downright embarrassing novel, Across the River and into the Trees.
Rafia Zakaria, a columnist for Pakistan’s largest newspaper (!), reviews the story of Hemingway’s Last Girl with chilly feminist scorn for the dirty old man’s incestuous infatuation with a younger woman he called “daughter,” and wrathfully concludes with a stern determination to call literary geniuses to account for their “sins” and their “misogyny” on behalf of the “maligned women” in their lives. Take that, Papa, you beast!
It all began because of a comb. Sometime after four in a dark and cold Italian morning, a young woman accompanied a band of men to a duck shoot. After it was over and the frigid hunters sat by the fire, the eighteen-year old Adriana Ivancich, the only woman in the gathering, asked for a comb for her long black hair. Nearly all the men in the party ignored her and kept up their talking. Ernest Hemingway, however, was not ever one to let a lady go unattended. After rooting around in his pockets, he produced a comb, broke it in half and gave it to her. It was a very Hemingway gesture, chivalrous and theatric and meant very much to be memorable. (63)
It would be. The Hemingway that was at the duck shoot that frigid morning may have been a rotund and aging man who presided over slightly slacking but still eminent literary career, but he remained ever amenable to the charms of women. The duck shoot was not even the first time the two had met; that had happened the night before, when Hemingway, along with Adrianaâ€™s cousin Nanuk Franchetti, the host of the duck shoot, had picked her up by the side of road. …
Autumn in Venice… is a chronicle of sorts of this last affair. Hemingway, then very much married to Mary Welsh Hemingway, who had ostensibly â€œstolenâ€ him away from Martha Gellhorn, romanced Adriana right under his wifeâ€™s nose. The story of Adriana and Hemingway was initially interposed between Mary Hemingwayâ€™s â€œmajor shopping spreesâ€, â€œhours of sightseeingâ€ and yet more shopping trips. It ended with Adriana and almost her entire family installed in the Hemingwayâ€™s home, fixtures at the caviar laden, booze filled evenings that oiled Hemingwayâ€™s daily grind.
In subject and content, the affair with Adriana, and indeed with Venice itself, was rather predictable and even banal. Hemingway had always craved the euphoria of being in love and had chased it all his life without concern for the cost it imposed on existing relationships and, as it were, his wives.
Musk isnâ€™t the only billionaire looking to enter the space race. Amazonâ€™s Jeff Bezos has his private aerospace company, Blue Origin, while Virginâ€™s Richard Branson, a prominent adventurer, created Virgin Galactic back in 2004.
These men, particularly Musk, are not only heavily invested in who can get their rocket into space first, but in colonizing Mars. The desire to colonize â€” to have unquestioned, unchallenged and automatic access to something, to any type of body, and to use it at will â€” is a patriarchal one. Indeed, there is no ethical consideration among these billionaires about whether this should be done; rather, the conversation is when it will be done. Because, in the eyes of these intrepid explorers, this is the only way to save humanity.
It is the same instinctual and cultural force that teaches men that everything â€” and everyone â€” in their line of vision is theirs for the taking. You know, just like walking up to a woman and grabbing her by the pussy.
Itâ€™s there, so just grab it because you can. …
[T]he impulse to colonize â€” to colonize lands, to colonize peoples, and, now that we may soon be technologically capable of doing so, colonizing space â€” has its origins in gendered power structures. Entitlement to power, control, domination and ownership. The presumed right to use and abuse something and then walk away to conquer and colonize something new.
Members of Crew 125 EuroMoonMars B mission return after collecting geologic samples for study at
The Friday before SpaceXâ€™s launch, legendary astronaut Buzz Aldrin reiterated to me over lunch that it is imperative that we talk about space exploration in terms of â€œmigration,â€ rather than using words like â€œcolonizeâ€ or â€œsettleâ€ when talking about going to Mars.
Through a feminist lens, Aldrinâ€™s deliberate word choice revealed an important reality of the space race: This 21st century form of imperialism is the direct result of men giving up on the planet they have all but destroyed.
As if history hasnâ€™t proven that men go from one land to the next, drunk on megalomania and the privilege of indifference.
The raping and pillaging of the Earth, and the environmental chaos that doing so has unleashed, are integral to the process of colonization. And the connection of the treatment of Mother Earth to women is more than symbolic: Study after study has shown that climate change globally affects women more than men.
Marcie Bianco was quite pleased with herself yesterday.
She is entitled to be, I suppose. Her editorial is really a classic, landmark example of the inversion of values by Leftism.
Enterprise, technological achievement, courage, initiative, the opening of new possibilities for mankind, the extension of the reach of human civilization, the willingness to take risk, the drive to explore and the passion to build are all bad things, impertinent, hubristic expressions of intrinsically wicked patriarchy.
Human travel to Mars and potential future settlement would be a form of Colonialism, a violation of the rights presumably of Martian rocks and Martian dust to be left exactly as they are.
The absence of actual Martians makes Dr. Bianco’s implied lack of some sort legitimate right of access problematic, so –in classic Leftist form– she plays the Environmentalist card: We are only going to Mars, you see, because we have completely exhaustively exploited, ruined, plundered, and rendered unlivable the Earth, obliging us to “walk away… conquer, and colonize something new.”
Except, Marcie, old thing, when Europeans colonized places in the New World, in Asia, and in Africa, I’m afraid they obviously had not “abused” Europe to anything resembling unliveability or even lower real estate values. Europe is still doing just fine and people are still living there.
It is politically incorrect of me to say so, and today’s Academic world would howl, but it seems obvious, too, that the European patriarchy decidedly improved all of the more primitive regions of the world it colonized, rescuing the locals from primitive and despotic governments; delivering the rule of law; building roads and railways and finally airports; providing sanitation, education, and modern medicine; putting down the slave trade; even elevating the status of women; in India, ending suttee. The European patriarchy built cities and created civilized nations of millions upon millions of people living lives of comparative abundance and unprecedented intellectual accomplishment with much greater longevity, where previously tribes of Stone Age savages pursued incessant warfare and little bands of hunter-gatherers searched desperately for their next grub.
Frankly, Dr. Bianco, all your grievances are either wholly specious or preposterously trivial when set against the accomplishments of the European patriarchy.
The worst thing I can think of to accuse that patriarchy of is the admission of deviants, neurotics, malcontents, and crackpots like yourself to prestigious positions from which they can dispense your kind of malicious, mean-spirited, and perverse lunacy.
The Marine Corps has made a major change to its Infantry Officer Course. The first big challenge for many was a test of physical fitness. If you passed, you moved on. If you didnâ€™t, you washed out. The test was especially difficult for women who had to meet the same standard as the men. Not anymore.
The Infantry Officer Course now uses the physical fitness test as an exercise, and not a pass/fail requirement.
Officials with Marine Corps Training and Education Command told Military.com â€œthat Marine Corps Commandant Gen. Robert Neller had made a decision in November to transform the test from a high-stakes hurdle to an assessment from which students can drop without risking their place in the course.â€
â€œ[Neller] approved modifications to the IOC [program of instruction] to better tie student evaluation and graduation requirements to published infantry training and readiness manual, military occupational specialty specific performance standards, and operating force requirements,â€ TECOM officials said in a statement.
As Martin van Creveld, the Israeli military historian has noted, the more women enter any professional field, the more men leave it. And as the men depart, so to do the prestige and the economic rewards provided by the field. This creates a vicious cycle that both expels existing men from the field while repelling new men from entering it.
If the universities can be considered a reliable model, we’re about three decades away from a majority female Marine Corps. No wonder China is content to patiently wait for its opportunity. This marks the second step in the end of the USMC’s historical prestige. Even current female Marine officers understand this.
â€œChanging this rite of passage will be doing female Marines no favors in trying to be infantry officers,â€ Marine 2nd Lt. Emma Stokien, a Marine Corps intelligence officer, wrote. â€œFemale Marines often have to work much harder than their peers to earn the same respect, and entering the infantry under the dark cloud of even perceived lowered standards will make this a practically impossible challenge and potentially cause real harm to unit cohesion and the faith between leader and led.â€
Permitting women to join the Marine Corps was the first mistake. Unqualified female officers are the second one. But the empire is in decline, and so these events are not even remotely surprising. There will be more unnecessary mistakes in the future and they will be more and more disastrous, until the empire “unexpectedly” crumbles for “no reason at all.”
Lily Loofbourow asserts that “our entire society has agreed to organize itself around the pursuit of the straight male orgasm.”
Women don’t leave encounters they don’t like. Women go through all sorts of inconvenience and discomfort to be attractive. Women dutifully participate in sex which they do not enjoy and may even find painful. And it’s all our fault! Men are such beasts.
When Babe.net published a pseudonymous woman’s account of a difficult encounter with Aziz Ansari that made her cry, the internet exploded with “takes” arguing that the #MeToo movement had finally gone too far. “Grace,” the 23-year-old woman, was not an employee of Ansari’s, meaning there were no workplace dynamics. Her repeated objections and pleas that they “slow down” were all well and good, but they did not square with the fact that she eventually gave Ansari oral sex. Finally, crucially, she was free to leave.
Why didn’t she just get out of there as soon as she felt uncomfortable? many people explicitly or implicitly asked.
It’s a rich question, and there are plenty of possible answers. But if you’re asking in good faith, if you really want to think through why someone might have acted as she did, the most important one is this: Women are enculturated to be uncomfortable most of the time. And to ignore their discomfort.
This is so baked into our society I feel like we forget it’s there. To steal from David Foster Wallace, this is the water we swim in.
The problem, of course, is that the contemporary religion of Leftism believes that Ideology and Theory are omnipotent while denying that Nature exercises powers over us outside our understanding or control.
Mehera Bonner feels that “Dunkirk” (2017) ought to have been made as a chick flic or possibly directed by Spike Lee.
my main issue with Dunkirk is that it’s so clearly designed for men to man-out over. And look, it’s not like I need every movie to have “strong female leads.” Wonder Woman can probably tide me over for at least a year, and I understand that this war was dominated by brave male soldiers. I get that. But the packaging of the film, the general vibe, and the tenor of the people applauding it just screams “men-only”â€”and specifically seems to cater to a certain type of very pretentious man who would love nothing more than to explain to me why I’m wrong about not liking it. If this movie were a dating profile pic, it would be a swole guy at the gym who also goes to Harvard. If it was a drink it would be Stumptown coffee. If it was one of your friends, it would be the one who starts his sentences with “I get what you’re saying, but…”
I guess congratulations are in order for Nolan managing to unite high-brow male critics and very annoying people on Twitter under a common bromance, but to me, Dunkirk felt like an excuse for men to celebrate malenessâ€”which apparently they don’t get to do enough. Fine, great, go forth, but if Nolan’s entire purpose is breaking the established war movie mold and doing something differentâ€”why not make a movie about women in World War II? Orâ€”because I know that will illicit cries of “ugh, not everything has to be about feminism, ugh!”â€”how about any other marginalized group? These stories shouldn’t be relegated to indie films and Oscar season. It’s up to giant powerhouse directors like Nolan to tell them, which is why Dunkirk feels so basic. It’s a summer war movie. It’ll make you fear for the future and pray that we never fight again. You might get kind of sick. If you’re like me, a random man will come up to you after and explain why you’re wrong for disliking it. But this war movie isn’t special. At the end of the day, it’s like all the rest of them.
Two feminist geographers are encouraging their colleagues to be more mindful about citing the research of white males because doing so contributes to â€œthe reproduction of white heteromasculinity of geographical thought and scholarship.â€
Writing in â€œGender, Place & Culture: A Journal of Feminist Geography,â€ Carrie Mott and Daniel Cockayne argue that considering an authorâ€™s gender, race or sexuality prior to citation can be an effective â€œfeminist and anti-racist technology of resistance that demonstrates engagement with those authors and voices we want to carry forward.â€
The authors point out that whether an academicâ€™s research is cited by his peers has significant implications for promotion, tenure and influence. Therefore, to cite only white men â€œdoes a disservice to researchers and writers who are othered by white heteromasculinism.â€
The authors define â€œwhite heteromasculinismâ€ as â€œan intersectional system of oppression describing on-going processes that bolster the status of those who are white, male, able-bodied, economically privileged, heterosexual, and cisgendered.â€
Academics should practice â€œconscientious engagementâ€ when citing research, the feminists assert, â€œas a way to self-consciously draw attention to those whose work is being reproduced.â€