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Do you think that men are oppressed?

(382 Posts)
poshsinglemum Fri 20-Aug-10 18:55:04

For example; the traditional male role is to go out and work so technically men are oppressed by capitalism. Aren't they? Mabe not as oppressed as us girls are though. Thoughts please.

slouchingtowardswaitrose Fri 20-Aug-10 18:57:45

Yes. And repressed. And depressed.

dittany Fri 20-Aug-10 18:57:54

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

slouchingtowardswaitrose Fri 20-Aug-10 19:04:27

I don't know Dittany. Our plumber makes more than DH, who makes quite a lot in his uber MC profession. DH on the other hand is in the shit because of the recession, might get sacked at any moment. There are hardly any plumbers, but there are too many of DH's profession.

And...hell yes men are oppressed because of their sex. Emotionally, physically - spiritually - patriarchy hurts and burdens men, too.

Yes they hold most economic power - but it is not without cost.

PosieParker Fri 20-Aug-10 19:07:08

Men probably feel repressed/oppressed because they have had it their way for so long that now we are beginning to deviate from that norm it feels unnatural for some men. Alas we are still evolving socially I fear true equality is a long time coming and taking power back from those who hold most of it leaves them feeling empty.

dittany Fri 20-Aug-10 19:08:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

foureleven Fri 20-Aug-10 19:13:14

The example of aplumber is an interesting one... Plumbers, sparkies, window cleaners (i.e. traditional mans jobs) pay more than traditional womens roles that hold the same skills and are as taxing i.e. childacre, cleaning etc...

All people are opressed by capitalism I suppose. Its not a gender issue in the way you descibe OP.

Orangerie Fri 20-Aug-10 19:13:37

Well... apparently, according to my friend who has done a lot of work in archeology, there was never a best time for human beings than before agriculture was invented.

Men worked less hours and had very strong relationships with their peers, women took care of each other and each other's children, but then someone decided to plant some seeds and we were all ruined.

Call it capitalism, mortgage, of settling down with a family, the man may say they are or were oppressed by the traditional roles but I think they weren't, as they had a captive servant at home who didn't have much influence and who unlike men, had her choices taken away.

slouchingtowardswaitrose Fri 20-Aug-10 19:18:29

Posie, I agree to a certain extent that men have been pressured to perform professionally, and make money, and not have emotions, and be brave, and cetera and cetera, for so long, and now are pressured to learn to sort the laundry properly, change nappies, fetch tampons from Tesco, be emotionally intelligent, etc, and damn well enjoy it. I know DH feels a certain degree of pressure from both 'sides.'

Dittany, I make fuck all but will inherit a shitload (from a very clever woman). So probably not a great example. I do get what you're trying to say. IMO you're mostly right about the money and political stuff, mostly wrong about the social and cultural stuff (with huge exceptions like sexualization of women and girls, etc).

slouchingtowardswaitrose Fri 20-Aug-10 19:21:41

411 agreed entirely re traditional men's vs women's roles and how much they pay.

Yes, we are all oppressed by capitalism. And yet we can all benefit (theoretically).

dittany Fri 20-Aug-10 19:22:45

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

slouchingtowardswaitrose Fri 20-Aug-10 19:29:32

Dittany, you said men (working class) are oppressed by capitalism. Also passive. So answer your question. Who is oppressing them? Then you will see that our answers are probably about the same

Women have almost all the social and cultural power where I come from. The sick thing is, it's because men have almost all the economic power, and women have learned ways to manipulate that system and become more empowered.

Most of these women do not want feminism! OMG, that would ruin everything (their perspective, not mine).

No I'm not saying where I'm from!

darcymum Fri 20-Aug-10 19:29:51

Men are expected to work and support families in a way women are not so much, I would find that oppressive. I'm glad I have the choice to stay at home and am glad that option is starting to be extended to men if thats what they are best suited to.

Having said that, men also seem to be free to piss off and abandon any children they have if they want to, in a way women are not.

PosieParker Fri 20-Aug-10 19:30:33

I'm not sure I meant men have been pressured/pressurised into their position, I think it's one they have enjoyed. I guess the steps are pretty slow from caveman to modern man, just look at the Vikings.

HecateQueenOfWitches Fri 20-Aug-10 19:34:22

I don't think you can say men are oppressed. However, I think there are things that are expected of men that are unfair on them.

They seem to be expected to not have feelings for one thing. To always be the strong one. To provide. (not sure how that fits with feminism!). Their worth seems to be often measured by how much they can provide, by what is in the bank, rather than by what is in their heart.

And have you seen how so many people react if a man dares to so much as glance in the direction of a child!

Men are shoved into a big group of Potential Rapists and Potential Child Abusers and it seems to be guilty until proven innocent.

Men are human beings. With feelings, fears, a need for love and care and attention. I think they are not allowed to show that, far too often.

I think in those ways it is not easy being male.

I don't agree that men are oppressed by the above. I don't think oppression is the right word.

We are all somehow trapped in our roles within society, to a greater or lesser extent, imo.

slouchingtowardswaitrose Fri 20-Aug-10 19:34:27

Anyone read Steve Biddulph's 'Manhood?'

slouchingtowardswaitrose Fri 20-Aug-10 19:35:49

Hecate, I think you're right, oppressed isn't the right word. It is about expectations, and there is much overt, covert, and cultural, historical 'pressure.'

dittany Fri 20-Aug-10 19:37:14

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BeenBeta Fri 20-Aug-10 19:38:33

Men are not oppressed but the current economic environment is removing man's traditional breadwinner role in blue collar professions especially and now increasingly white collar professions.

I linked a while ago to an article in a US magazine about the devastating impact on men's mental health, their relationships with their wives and their family that long term unemployment brings.

Interestingly, some research was quoted that showed the incidence of women instigating divorce increased once a man lost his job. It seems that women too view a man as diminished once a job is lost.

Yes the economic environment is bringing new pressures on men, undermining their breadwinner traditional role. Women of course have pressures too - but different ones to men.

Hopefully, no one will read that as a 'poor menz' post but its the reality for some men.

dittany Fri 20-Aug-10 19:41:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

darcymum Fri 20-Aug-10 19:44:43

One disadvantage of being a man is that during times of war man can be conscripted into the army and expected to die for their country.

Thankfully not here any more.

Although even taking this into account there are still many many more women 'missing' in the world than men.

slouchingtowardswaitrose Fri 20-Aug-10 19:47:09

So, I have to be specific, but you can just be general. OK Dittany. I have pressured men.

Every single other heterosexual woman I know has pressured men in some way, to be more respectful, more emotional, and better at laundry sorting etc.

And that's just us being strong bitches. That's not including all the media and less personal cultural stuff.

PosieParker Fri 20-Aug-10 19:48:01

It must be confusing to be told as a child(certainly my generation) don't cry, be strong, take it like a man, grr grr and then you get married and your wife is shocked when you can't express yourself. It seems to me that 70's mothers (in the main) didn't do so well at bringing up the sort of man we expect today, certainly the working class ones. When I was in my early twenties I worked with, mainly, men from a variety of backgrounds, (Winchester college, Rugby, Eton and then proper Northern state schools) the private school boys were rather "hooray for whores, let's go whoring, but don't sleep with me on a first date or you're a slag" stereotype, most bar a couple of the others had mild sexist ideas (all shared the idea that they could fuck around but not a woman) but were far less vocal, in fact two of the most enlightened men I ever met were your proper working class state school type. Still my middle class non private school friends live a very different life to me, many of them have wives that stay at home and they still go out to the pub, go cycling, surfing and work very long hours....all about them, I'm not sure that's sexist or just damn selfish.

Anyway I am now rambling.

PosieParker Fri 20-Aug-10 19:49:17

Diane Abbott talks a lot about the gender discriminate cuts.

slouchingtowardswaitrose Fri 20-Aug-10 19:49:43

Been Beta, yes. This is why my own feminism is moving towards an ecohumanist feminism - poorly regulated capitalism, materialism, consumerism hurts men and women and children and the environment.

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