Sunday, September 30, 2012

A gender on the way out

January 2010:
men are a gender on the way out - not very smart, socially autistic, high maintenance, low return. We heard a really cool rap song "Du bist der Weihnacht@mann" at a Gottingen grade school school, sang by a chorus of 8 year old girls. Why were they so good? They had kicked out the boys from the choir, "because they were too lazy." Sounds familiar? This whole gender is on the way out, methinks. It's a disgrace to the species. Women will not have us, even those of us who are female in all ways but the genital, having been raised by single mothers and their girlfriends (alleged fathers only pitching in with an occasional postcard).

If I may be so bold as to quote the introduction to the Pulitzer Prize winning, from a letter from Hermann Minkowski to David Hilbert:

"It seems sometimes that through a preoccupation with science, we acquire a firmer hold over the vicissitudes of life and meet them with greater calm, but in reality we have done no more than to find a way to escape from our sorrows."

iPhone owners might seek solace in Requires only one finger. [Warning: those over 48 might experience dizziness and shortness of breath]. The rest of us will have to drown our sorrows in sensitive, chick flicks such as Off the map.

30 September 2012:
Much recent back and forth in New York Times and recent books about the alleged decline of male gender. It's complicated.  Progress of women in US jobs has stalled in the past decade (see statistics here, and a very good county-by-county map here). Today's New York Times:

If the ascent of women has been much exaggerated, so has the descent of men. Men’s irresponsibility and bad behavior is now a stock theme in popular culture. But there has always been a subset of men who engage in crude, coercive and exploitative behavior. What’s different today is that it’s harder for men to get away with such behavior in long-term relationships. Women no longer feel compelled to put up with it and the legal system no longer condones it. The result is that many guys who would have been obnoxious husbands, behaving badly behind closed doors, are now obnoxious singles, trumpeting their bad behavior on YouTube.

Their boorishness may be pathetic, but it’s much less destructive than the masculine misbehavior of yore. Most men are in fact behaving better than ever. Domestic violence rates have been halved since 1993, while rapes and sexual assaults against women have fallen by 70 percent in that time. In recent decades, husbands have doubled their share of housework and tripled their share of child care. And this change is not confined to highly educated men.

On the Run

1 comment:

Mason said...

"not very smart, socially autistic, high maintenance, low return"

Not that I display any of these features---especially not social autism. :)