Some of the best critiques of modern feminism have come from former feminists. Good examples being Christina Hoff Sommers and Janice Fiamengo. Not only are they insightful but they are brave because feminism, along with other cults, views apostasy as the worst crime of all.
I was prompted to write this post because of a conversation between evolutionary biologist Gad Saad and Janice Fiamengo that you can find below. The interview dates from 2016 but somehow I missed it. Things haven’t exactly improved since then, so I think that makes it worth watching now. Agree or disagree (a bit of both with me), Gad Saad is always worth listening to and you can find his YouTube channel here.
Most interesting to me were Janice’s comments in response to Gad Saad characterising radical feminism as a quasi religious movement surrounded by an impenetrable shell that is impervious to rational argument. I have tried to transcribe the reply from Janice starting at about 27 minutes . I apologise for any inaccuracies I may have introduced.
Having been a feminist myself I can say that it is a very pleasurable kind of faith, it promises absolution from sin in the way faith does but it doesn’t require the things that real faith requires. Which is work on yourself to become a better person – self-giving, loving even of your enemies as in the Christian tradition. Feminism allows you to hate your enemies and believe yourself innocent. It gives you a powerful voice in our society. A voice that can demand to be listened to and demand that all sorts of actions be taken immediately. Simply make a claim on a University campus that you feel threatened or that something makes you feel unsafe and usually administrators will hop-to and do whatever it is that a group is demanding. That is a very wonderfully pleasurable feeling of power. There is no responsibility that goes along with that power because feminism claims that women are innocent victims. So it’s pretty hard to give up it is a ‘good gig’. It garners a lot of public sympathy, very little opposition and it allows a bonding among people with that shared ideology there’s lots of fun, there are lots of things to do, there is always a protest to go to, a poster campaign. You can liaise with police or various organisations in society on how that organisation can better serve the needs of women. It gives you all sorts of things to do in your life and a wonderful self-identity.
Feminism attracts people and then exacerbates certain kinds of personality disorder, narcissism, victim mentality – those kinds of things. I remember you ( Gad Saad) mentioned Munchausen’s syndrome – the desire to see oneself as harmed and therefore to base an identity and claims of sympathy upon that.
I have met so many different kinds of women and they didn’t all seem to be personality disordered yet their anger when their world view is challenged, their defensiveness.. their clinging to an idea….
You know, I’ve met women… they will harken back to one thing that happened to them. They might be 50 now and at age 19 some teacher said something to them ” that women should not do certain things or profession” … some minor thing. Even if every other man treated them as equal human beings they remember this single case and that becomes the grounding for a huge monumental sense of grievance’
Perhaps human beings have a desire to feel that we are victims, a lot of us feel we don’t get the recognition we deserve so feminism is a ready-made framework for that.
Another thing I liked about the interview was that Janice was willing to disagree with Gad. For example, when Gad tries to draw a parallel between feminists and some incels she expresses doubt. Incels have been unsuccessful in the brutally hierarchical world of sexual selection and some (not all) of these individuals come to harbour misogynist fantasies. There may be a few misandrist feminists who come from similar backgrounds, but for reasons that have been discussed in a previous post (Dec 5 ‘Incels will always be with us‘) there are far fewer female incels. In my experience, some of the most radical feminists are almost the opposite, they are attractive, socially skilled, ‘well-healed’ and ‘well’ educated. It seems to me that there is a process of radicalisation going on in posh schools, particularly girls’ schools, and in university liberal arts departments. As Janice says, feminism is a ‘good gig’ which brings many perks. Perhaps men are less willing to challenge toxic and misandrist views expressed by attractive (socially and physically) women and for that reason they are able to get away with it. These, however, are my speculations. Better listen to the interview and get Janice’s thoughts.