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More Meat for Minimum Wage August 9, 2015

Posted by geoff in News.

Just when you thought there were too many useless degrees being issued in modern times, they add one more:

Dr. Kimmel is the founder and director of the Center for the Study of Men and Masculinities at Stony Brook University, part of the State University of New York system, which will soon start the first master’s degree program in “masculinities studies.”

Now, I won’t deny that there are probably things worth investigating about masculinity, especially as besieged as it is in modern times, but an entire degree program seems like just another form of useless navel-gazing.

Plus, they’re not starting off very well:

“Let’s say it was said at your funeral, ‘He was a good man,’ ” Dr. Kimmel explained. “What does that mean to you?”

“Caring,” a male student in the front said.

“Putting other’s needs before yours,” another young man said.

“Honest,” a third said.

Dr. Kimmel listed each term under the heading Good Man, then turned back to the group. “Now,” he said, “tell me what it means to be a real man.”

This time, the students reacted more quickly.

“Take charge; be authoritative,” said James, a sophomore.

“Take risks,” said Amanda, a sociology graduate student.

“It means suppressing any kind of weakness,” another offered.

“I think for me being a real man meant talk like a man,” said a young man who’d grown up in Turkey. “Walk like a man. Never cry.”

Dr. Kimmel had been taking notes. “Now you’re in the wheelhouse,” he said, excitedly. He pointed to the Good Man list on the left side of the board, then to the Real Man list he’d added to the right. “Look at the disparity. I think American men are confused about what it means to be a man.”

I think Dr. Kimmel is confused about the terminology himself. First, the ‘real man’ is a joke, literally, as in “Real Men Don’t Eat Quiche.” The real man doesn’t exist.

Instead, we have simply have the ‘man.’ When we say, “he’s a man” in an admiring, idealized way, we mean he’s strong (mentally more than physically), self-reliant, honest, moral, and reliable. The self-reliant part is why liberals have a hard time being men – it’s not necessarily that they’re not self-reliant themselves, but that they don’t value self-reliance.

Now, if we say “he’s a good man,” we mean that he’s especially gifted in one of the categories of manhood.

On the other hand, if we say “he’s a nice man,” we mean that he is caring and helps others. […or that he’ll probably never get a date.]


Dr. Kimmel – we know what men are. It’s you who are confused as to how to describe or understand them. All I can see coming from your degree program is misandry, feminization of the male ideal, and more Robert Bly-like BS.

Well, that and more fast food workers.


1. Retired Geezer - August 9, 2015

I’m pretty good at fixin’ stuff, hope that counts for something.

*crosses fingers

2. geoff - August 9, 2015

That there goes under “self-reliant.”

And will earn you sammiches.

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