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Men Explain Things To Me summary

Rebecca Solnit

And Other Essays

3.8 (90 ratings)
12 mins

Brief summary

"Men Explain Things to Me" by Rebecca Solnit is a collection of poignant essays that tackle the issues of gender inequality and the mansplaining phenomenon. It sheds light on the systemic silencing of women's voices and provides a call to action for change.

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    Men Explain Things To Me
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    Men explain things to women because they think their knowledge and expertise is superior.

    Have you ever found yourself listening to a man explain to you how things really are? If you’re a woman, you undoubtedly have.

    Men often assume (perhaps unconsciously) that they’re more intelligent or knowledgeable than women, so they feel the need to teach them in a condescending or patronizing way. This is also known as mansplaining, a combination of “man” and “explaining.”

    The New York Times dubbed “mansplaining” Word of the Year in 2010, and it had entered mainstream political journalism by 2012. The author didn’t invent the term, but she’s credited with popularizing it. She herself feels the word is a bit unclear, however, as it seems to imply that all men do this. Women do it too, though far less often.

    Mansplaining occurs because of sexism and men’s arrogance regarding women’s knowledge, reliability and expertise.

    Even an established writer like the author isn’t safe from this kind of subtle, everyday sexism. In fact, a man once interrupted her to tell her about a great book related to a subject they were discussing, implying he knew more about it than she did. As he kept talking, the author realized he was telling her about her own book.

    More extreme manifestations of this phenomenon occur in other parts of the world. In some countries in the Middle East, a woman’s testimony of rape doesn’t have weight unless there was another man there to witness it. A woman’s word is considered less reliable than a man’s word.

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    What is Men Explain Things To Me about?

    Men Explain Things To Me (2014) is a collection of essays that examine the range of misogyny in our culture, from everyday microaggressions to legal systems that fail to punish rape. Solnit explains how sexism perpetuates itself, and what we can all do to eliminate it.

    Men Explain Things To Me Review

    Men Explain Things To Me (2014) by Rebecca Solnit sheds light on the pervasive issue of mansplaining and its detrimental effects on women. Here's why this book is worth your time:

    • With sharp analysis and compelling anecdotes, Solnit exposes the patriarchal attitudes that perpetuate the suppression of female voices.
    • It is a powerful call to action, urging readers to recognize and challenge the gender dynamics that often go unnoticed in everyday conversations.
    • Solnit's thought-provoking exploration of gender inequality captivates readers, sparking conversations and fostering a deeper understanding of these complex issues.

    Best quote from Men Explain Things To Me

    An exasperated women remarked to me, What do [men] want – a cookie for not hitting, raping, or threatening women?

    —Rebecca Solnit
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    Who should read Men Explain Things To Me?

    • Women who are tired of men talking down to them
    • Men who want to be allies in the fight against misogyny
    • Anyone curious about feminism or how deep-rooted sexism is in our society

    About the Author

    Rebecca Solnit is a writer, activist, historian, contributor to the Guardian and contributing editor at Harper’s. She’s written 16 books on subjects as wide-ranging as art, politics, the environment, memory and the history of walking.

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    Men Explain Things To Me FAQs 

    What is the main message of Men Explain Things To Me?

    The main message of Men Explain Things To Me is the pervasive problem of mansplaining and the need for gender equality.

    How long does it take to read Men Explain Things To Me?

    The reading time for Men Explain Things To Me varies, but it typically takes several hours. The Blinkist summary can be read in just 15 minutes.

    Is Men Explain Things To Me a good book? Is it worth reading?

    Men Explain Things To Me is an insightful book that sheds light on gender dynamics. It's worth reading for its important perspectives in under 130 characters.

    Who is the author of Men Explain Things To Me?

    The author of Men Explain Things To Me is Rebecca Solnit.

    What to read after Men Explain Things To Me?

    If you're wondering what to read next after Men Explain Things To Me, here are some recommendations we suggest:
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