Mike Kueber's Blog

September 13, 2012

Why men fail?

Filed under: Culture — Mike Kueber @ 5:12 pm
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A couple of weeks ago, I blogged about a book called The Richer Sex.  The book explains why women will become the dominant breadwinner in most families and then describes how families will be affected by having a female as the dominant breadwinner.  A few days later, The New York Times Magazine published an extensive 8-page article titled “Who Wears the Pants in this Family?” that adapts a book titled The End of Men: And the Rise of Women by Hanna Rosin.  I commented in my blog that brilliant minds apparently think alike because Mundy’s book and Rosin’s article are strikingly similar. 

Today, we achieved a trifecta on man-bashing when my favorite NY Times columnist David Brooks wrote a column titled “Why Men Fail.”   In his column, Brooks goes over the same information provided in the Mundy and Rosin books and comes to the same conclusion – i.e., women are thriving in a world that puts a premium on brawn over brain and men are floundering.  Previously, Brooks has propounded the following theory for why this is happening:

  • Over the years, many of us have embraced a certain theory to explain men’s economic decline. It is that the information-age economy rewards traits that, for neurological and cultural reasons, women are more likely to possess.  To succeed today, you have to be able to sit still and focus attention in school at an early age. You have to be emotionally sensitive and aware of context. You have to communicate smoothly. For genetic and cultural reasons, many men stink at these tasks.”

In today’s column, however, Brooks examines Rosin’s book and expresses fascination for the book’s thesis that women are doing well because they are operating with more of a blank slate in these turbulent times, whereas men are doing badly because they nostalgically cling to a lifestyle in an environment that no longer exists.

All of this reminds me of the introduction to one of my all-time favorite movies, Gone with the Wind

  • There was a land of Cavaliers and Cotton Fields called the Old South. Here in this pretty world, Gallantry took its last bow. Here was the last ever to be seen of Knights and their Ladies Fair, of Master and of Slave. Look for it only in books, for it is no more than a dream remembered, a Civilization gone with the wind.

In Gone with the Wind, Ashley Wilkes remained mentally in antebellum times, while Scarlett O’Hara engaged in the rebuilding of Atlanta.  That situation may repeat itself for a time, but eventually men will adjust their attitude and get back in the game.


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