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Here's what I don't get about the whole "Men's Rights" thing - Elf M. Sternberg
Here's what I don't get about the whole "Men's Rights" thing
Reddit is a hotbed of the manosphere; there are plenty of reddit channels where MRA's and PUA's talk to each other about "the game" of picking up women and having sex with them, or not. And while there are many things I don't get about the whole "manosphere," but one of them that perplexes me the most is simply this: among the manospherians, two of the most popular books are Dale Carnegie's How to Win Friends and Influence People, and Olivia Fox Cabane's The Charisma Myth.

Both of these books teach you how to be more charismatic, more sensitive, and more empathetic, and both of them start with this premise: "If you don't find other people interesting, they'll never find you interesting." Neither Carnegie or Cabane mean that in a superficial way: you have to like other people, you have to want to get to know other people in a validating way, you have to empathise with them and want to understand them better; you have to have their best interests at heart.

The game of putting notches on one's belt or bedpost is diametrically opposed to this kind of empathy. The idea is to get into a woman's graces immediately, to manipulate and control, and not to actually treat the other person as a human being. How is that Carnegie and Cabane both win high praises from the very people they could never countenance?

Current Music: Linkin Park, Blackout

9 comments or Leave a comment
polydad From: polydad Date: May 29th, 2014 12:13 am (UTC) (Link)
I think the answer you're looking for is "denial".
dr_memory From: dr_memory Date: May 29th, 2014 03:38 am (UTC) (Link)
Never underestimate the ability of someone to ignore the parts of a dense text that they don't wish to comprehend. Especially if that someone is, say, an embittered 22-year-old dude.

But yes, this part specifically drives me insane. If I felt like tallying it up, I'm sure that I've had a particularly interesting sex life by PUA standards -- orgies, actual porn stars, blah blah blah -- and now that I'm in middle age that includes some people who stopped being my lover for decades before jumping back into bed with me for whatever reason, and the whole thing that made that possible and enjoyable was that we kept in touch, stayed part of each others lives, were to pick an ominous word "friends." I just want to shake these poor kids and yell why are you complaining about 'the friendzone,' who the fuck do you think you're going to sleep with if not your friends?!

Something something horses and water. The best spin I can take on it is that being 22 and stupid is usually neither terminal nor permanent, and hopefully later on in life they'll come back to Carnegie and realize what they were missing.
elfs From: elfs Date: May 29th, 2014 08:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
Yeah, I can only hope, because I've more or less had the same life (although I wouldn't really recommend the sleeping-with-pornstars as a bucket list item; it wasn't nearly as interesting as the sleeping-with-erotica-authors time was).
jordan179 From: jordan179 Date: May 29th, 2014 04:58 am (UTC) (Link)
Interestingly, Carnegie is arguing for the "magic of friendship."
kensaro From: kensaro Date: May 29th, 2014 08:19 am (UTC) (Link)
Isn't it that they say that sincerity is the key? Once you can fake that, you have it made.
elfs From: elfs Date: May 29th, 2014 08:15 pm (UTC) (Link)
Except that as Cabane points out, you can't fake it. You get 17 milliseconds to "fake it," and there's no way your conscious brain has time to fake it in that amount of time.
pixel39 From: pixel39 Date: May 29th, 2014 02:44 pm (UTC) (Link)
The rants I have read talk about guys pretending to be interested, and all the work they did to fake being empathetic being wasted when she said no anyway, so I suspect it's a "fake this and you'll get into her pants" kind of thing.
doodlesthegreat From: doodlesthegreat Date: May 29th, 2014 03:53 pm (UTC) (Link)
It can easily be explained as a combination of hormones and stupidity.
l33tminion From: l33tminion Date: May 29th, 2014 10:17 pm (UTC) (Link)
Communities are heterogeneous. Plus people are hypocrites.
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