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Identity Reductionism


I wrote this elsewhere today with some minor edits; I found it kinda fitting for a post here.

TL;DR: Identity reductionism is a major problem at the core of right vs left-wing identity politics debates. I think things like feminism would be broadly embraced if it was framed as being beneficial for everyone instead of tit for tat.

I have a question, why are suicides in America dominated by men to almost being as much as 70% of them? Could it be that men actually in their hearts don't believe their self-worth and masculinity are tied to how many women they have sex with, how physically strong they are, how tall they are, how much money they make and how many people they can beat up. But in effect, they are actually socially encouraged to feel that way because of society at large and fear punishment from other men if they stand up to those stereotypes and/or face rejection from women if they are contrary to what society defines as a "man".

I truly think men are sick of being placed at the forefront of all the bull**** in life and forced to deal with it. Some are able to deal with it in stride, but many aren't able to and are physically/mentally struggling to meet society's demands. They truly want a break from what defines a man as a "man". I think feminism would be broadly embraced among men if it meant the ending of male gender roles and society's sole expectations of them. This goes beyond LGBT concerns. There's stuff beyond that which is happening to men. My dad is sick and can't work. He doesn't feel like a man because he watches his wife go to work while he's forced to sit at home. He thinks his wife resents him because of that. It could be something as simple as myself being really short in height (I'm 5'3") and not thought of as much of a man and rejected by many women because of that.

Some feminists have brought up exactly what I said, by framing feminism as something for everyone; but it seems they are quickly shot down by other feminists as just merely bringing up men's concerns; which is totally missing the point, to be honest. Feminism isn't just about sexual assault and the pay gap like many seem to think. It's about equality, ending of gender roles, dominance/submission, among other things. I just think that we need to stop applying identity reductionism to society's ills and start addressing what's at the root of all these problems instead of seeking to punish one identity for the sake of another identity. Maybe we can start absolving what's at the root of most of these suicides and a lot of mental illness in general.

I don't know, these are just my thoughts for the day. I don't mean to sound like a MRA kind of guy. I just don't like identity reductionism as I think it's mostly responsible for the division in America right now at its core and why equality-based policy prescriptions in politics aren't broadly embraced at the moment.

EDIT: Minor punctuation error.

Last edited by SystemOverride; 12-11-2019 at 11:17 AM. Reason: Minor punctuation error.
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post #2 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-10-2019, 02:55 PM
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Feminism was never really supposed to be about everyone and it already has a bunch of sects that disagree on various topics within feminism. Plus you have the men's rights movement which addresses men's issues. It would be helpful if feminists and liberal media stopped blanket rejecting that movement in it's entirety.

I do not think that a movement like you're describing can come out of any existing movement. This is probably the closest thing but goes much further then most would like:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Postgenderism

When movements that address male gender roles are brought up in media they are either painted as misogynist (usually the case in the West,) or if there isn't enough material to make that claim (usually the case outside the West,) they are criticised as being anti-society:

https://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/...-gender-crisis

Quote:
Such shifting gender types, and other aspects of societal change, have led Japan to experience a “continuous drop” in marriages as well as fertility rates in recent years. Many no longer consider marriage an integral part of their life.

With an ageing population living ever-longer past retirement, and a younger generation disengaging from social contributions that form Japan’s backbone, there is increasing concern about redefined gender roles and their impact on society.

“This isn’t just exceptional undergraduate research,” added Steger. “It’s a very timely examination of the seismic ructions in gender roles that are taking place in modern Japan, and their ramifications”.
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/thin...aving-sex.html

Quote:
The alarming decrease in sexual appetite among young men in Japan is linked to the country's ongoing economic depression, writes Gareth May
https://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/a...herbivore.men/

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/...ing-walks.html

Quote:
Today, Igarashi has a new identity (and plenty of company among young Japanese men) as one of the soushoku danshi—literally translated, “grass-eating boys.” Named for their lack of interest in sex and their preference for quieter, less competitive lives, Japan’s “herbivores” are provoking a national debate about how the country’s economic stagnation since the early 1990s has altered men’s behavior.
Quote:
In this age of bromance and metrosexuals, why all the fuss? The short answer is that grass-eating men are alarming because they are the nexus between two of the biggest challenges facing Japanese society: the declining birth rate and anemic consumption. Herbivores represent an unspoken rebellion against many of the masculine, materialist values associated with Japan’s 1980s bubble economy. Media Shakers, a consulting company that is a subsidiary of Dentsu, the country’s largest advertising agency, estimates that 60 percent of men in their early 20s and at least 42 percent of men aged 23 to 34 consider themselves grass-eating men. Partner Agent, a Japanese dating agency, found in a survey that 61 percent of unmarried men in their 30s identified themselves as herbivores. Of the 1,000 single men in their 20s and 30s polled by Lifenet, a Japanese life-insurance company, 75 percent described themselves as grass-eating men.

Japanese companies are worried that herbivorous boys aren’t the status-conscious consumers their parents once were. They love to putter around the house. According to Media Shakers’ research, they are more likely to want to spend time by themselves or with close friends, more likely to shop for things to decorate their homes, and more likely to buy little luxuries than big-ticket items. They prefer vacationing in Japan to venturing abroad. They’re often close to their mothers and have female friends, but they’re in no rush to get married themselves, according to Maki Fukasawa, the Japanese editor and columnist who coined the term in NB Online in 2006.
A lot of the criticism overlaps somewhat with 'Millenials who are killing everything™':

https://mashable.com/2017/07/31/thin...d/?europe=true

The wretched world we’re living in at present was not an unlucky war of fate; it was an economic and political decision made without consulting the enormous human population that it would most drastically affect. If we would have it otherwise, if we’d prefer a future that we can call home, then we must stop supporting — even passively — this ravenous, insatiable conservative agenda before it devours us with our kids as a dessert. - Alan Moore

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post #3 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-10-2019, 03:02 PM
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I work in a male dominated industry & it is utterly ridiculous the amount of d*** measuring goes on, why do they want to talk like that all the time ? To prove they're not gay ? I don't get it






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post #4 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-10-2019, 08:29 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Persephone The Dread View Post
Feminism was never really supposed to be about everyone and it already has a bunch of sects that disagree on various topics within feminism. Plus you have the men's rights movement which addresses men's issues. It would be helpful if feminists and liberal media stopped blanket rejecting that movement in it's entirety.

I do not think that a movement like you're describing can come out of any existing movement. This is probably the closest thing but goes much further then most would like:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Postgenderism

When movements that address male gender roles are brought up in media they are either painted as misogynist (usually the case in the West,) or if there isn't enough material to make that claim (usually the case outside the West,) they are criticised as being anti-society:

https://www.cam.ac.uk/research/news/...-gender-crisis



https://www.telegraph.co.uk/men/thin...aving-sex.html



https://edition.cnn.com/2009/WORLD/a...herbivore.men/

https://slate.com/news-and-politics/...ing-walks.html





A lot of the criticism overlaps somewhat with 'Millenials who are killing everything™':

https://mashable.com/2017/07/31/thin...d/?europe=true
Well, I've always advocated for true equality. I generally reject things like identity politics because they end up running counter to equality. Special interests has never advanced the common good.

Yeah, the phenomenon in Japan is definitely enticing. They're still a long ways away from being truly progressive, but phenomenons like these show that Japan in some ways, is actually more progressive than America.
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post #5 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-10-2019, 08:33 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by blue2 View Post
I work in a male dominated industry & it is utterly ridiculous the amount of d*** measuring goes on, why do they want to talk like that all the time ? To prove they're not gay ? I don't get it
Yeah, it's things like this that lead me away from being friends with most Western men. It's like a male centered version of keeping up with the joneses. I want nothing of it.
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post #6 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-11-2019, 02:13 AM
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Originally Posted by SystemOverride View Post
Well, I've always advocated for true equality. I generally reject things like identity politics because they end up running counter to equality. Special interests has never advanced the common good.

Yeah, the phenomenon in Japan is definitely enticing. They're still a long ways away from being truly progressive, but phenomenons like these show that Japan in some ways, is actually more progressive than America.
I just think any 'movement' will have to come from a less organised behavioural trends like in Japan, and one that doesn't work with capitalism/commercialism because sooner or later materialism ruins everything that's absorbed into it by turning everything into a huge competition to distract from the hollow centre. It did it with feminism first and now it's doing it with the LGBTQ+ community.. I think it's unavoidable to some extent but it works better if it's countercultural/reactionary because culture can't survive what capitalism does to it well.

Quote:
Many of Hosho’s friends spend so much time playing computer games that they prefer the company of cyber women to the real thing. And the Internet, he says, has helped make alternative lifestyles more acceptable. Hosho believes that the lines between men and women in his generation have blurred. He points to the popularity of “boys love,” a genre of manga and novels written for women about romantic relationships between men that has spawned its own line of videos, computer games, magazines, and cafes where women dress as men.

Fukasawa contends that while some grass-eating men may be gay, many are not. Nor are they metrosexuals. Rather, their behavior reflects a rejection of both the traditional Japanese definition of masculinity and what she calls the West’s “commercialization” of relationships, under which men needed to be macho and purchase products to win a woman’s affection. Some Western concepts, like going to dinner parties as a couple, never fit easily into Japanese culture, she says. Others never even made it into the language—the term “ladies first,” for instance, is usually said in English in Japan. During Japan’s bubble economy, “Japanese people had to live according to both Western standards and Japanese standards,” says Fukasawa. “That trend has run its course.”
On a materialistic note one thing I found interesting is that they have two 'valentine's' days in Japan (and some other Asian countries):

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Day

Quote:
White Day was first celebrated in 1978 in Japan.[8] It was started by the National Confectionery Industry Association as an "answer day" to Valentine's Day on the grounds that men should pay back the women who gave them chocolate and other gifts on Valentine's Day. In 1977, a Fukuoka-based confectionery company, Ishimuramanseido, marketed marshmallows to men on March 14, calling it Marshmallow Day (マシュマロデー Mashumaro Dē).[8]
Quote:
In Japan, Morozoff Ltd. introduced the holiday for the first time in 1936, when it ran an advertisement aimed at foreigners. Later, in 1953, it began promoting the giving of heart-shaped chocolates; other Japanese confectionery companies followed suit thereafter. In 1958, the Isetan department store ran a "Valentine sale". Further campaigns during the 1960s popularized the custom.[114][115]

The custom that only women give chocolates to men may have originated from the translation error of a chocolate-company executive during the initial campaigns.[116] In particular, office ladies give chocolate to their co-workers. Unlike western countries, gifts such as greeting cards,[116] candies, flowers, or dinner dates[117] are uncommon, and most of the gifts-related activity is about giving the right amount of chocolate to each person.[116] Japanese chocolate companies make half their annual sales during this time of the year.[116]

Many women feel obliged to give chocolates to all male co-workers, except when the day falls on a Sunday, a holiday. This is known as giri-choko (義理チョコ), from giri ("obligation") and choko, ("chocolate"), with unpopular co-workers receiving only "ultra-obligatory" chō-giri choko cheap chocolate. This contrasts with honmei-choko (本命チョコ, lit. "true feeling chocolate"), chocolate given to a loved one. Friends, especially girls, may exchange chocolate referred to as tomo-choko (友チョコ); from tomo meaning "friend".[118]

In the 1980s, the Japanese National Confectionery Industry Association launched a successful campaign to make March 14 a "reply day", where men are expected to return the favour to those who gave them chocolates on Valentine's Day, calling it White Day for the color of the chocolates being offered. A previous failed attempt to popularize this celebration had been done by a marshmallow manufacturer who wanted men to return marshmallows to women.[114][115]

In Japan, the romantic "date night" associated to Valentine's Day is celebrated on Christmas Eve.[119]
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valentine%27s_Day#Japan

So in actual fact Valentine's day where women/girls gave men/boys gifts started first there.

I believe Russia has two days as well because I think I saw someone mention that, but I'm not 100% sure.

I don't like this kind of event at all because it's very impersonal and commercialistic, but it is interesting how this reveals a bias in Western society:

https://www.theguardian.com/commenti...ing-love-women

Quote:
Valentine's Day isn't about you, men. It's about lavishing love on women
Men act like helpless damsels in distress all year round, expecting women to pick up the slack. It’s not too much to expect one day of total goddess treatment
Quote:
So for ****’s sake, dude, shower your girlfriend with champagne at Per Se and a Pegasus flying over a double rainbow or something. If you don’t dive to the bottom of the Atlantic and fetch her the Heart of the Ocean, she has every right to reactivate her Tinder.
Quote:
Naturally, men think the least bit of effort on the chores front deserves a national holiday. The other day my boyfriend was Swiffer-ing the apartment very pointedly, because I’d recently yelled at him for not helping out enough. It was making horrible scraping noises as he pushed it along our hardwood floor.

“Um… do you know how to do that?” I was compelled to ask.

He squirted the cleaning fluid and replied indignantly, “Yeah, see?”

He didn’t know he had to stick a cleaning pad on the bottom of the sweeper, so he was just sort of scratching wet, dirty plastic on the floor. God love them (and He clearly does, as evidenced by the myriad of social and professional benefits they’re handed at birth), but in terms of basic adult functionality and life skills, men are basically damsels in distress. (Or at least they pretend to be helpless to shirk their responsibilities – like the classic situation when teenagers want their moms to find something for them, and the mom replies “Find it yourself!” and the teenager whines, “But you’re so much better at finding things!”)
Quote:
Add up a whole year of these little teachable moments – the dishes washed, the cover letters rewritten, the laundry dropped off and picked up, instituting and enforcing a “no Camel Lights indoors, even when you are drinking whiskey with your insufferable playwright friend” rule – and one night of treating your girlfriend like a goddess is totally to scale. Good Lord, being forced to sit though the mediocre improv shows alone should qualify us for sainthood.
I think you need to learn to break up with people you're incompatible with..

Honestly it just reminds me of this video but I'm going off on a huge tangent now


Also this lol:


(I genuinely don't know how that article isn't satirical.)

but yeah back to the other thing:

Quote:
While many Japanese women might disagree, Fukasawa sees grass-eating boys as a positive development for Japanese society. She notes that before World War II, herbivores were more common: Novelists such as Osamu Dazai and Soseki Natsume would have been considered grass-eating boys. But in the postwar economic boom, men became increasingly macho, increasingly hungry for products to mark their personal economic progress. Young Japanese men today are choosing to have less to prove.
I'm not sure the author of No Longer Human who was like a male Sylvia Plath and committed suicide after attempting it many times is the best example. :') but anyways. I think it's interesting that he was born in the early 1990s which is the 'generation' that most people like to compare Western Millenials to.

For a while now men's role in most societies has generally been tied to work or war so without that you have a kind of void, described somewhat by Fight Club.

“We’re the middle children of history, man. No purpose or place. We have no Great War. No Great Depression. Our Great War’s a spiritual war… our Great Depression is our lives. We’ve all been raised on television to believe that one day we’d all be millionaires, and movie gods, and rock stars. But we won’t. And we’re slowly learning that fact. And we’re very, very pissed off.”


It's not just a male thing though and it's not just a gender thing, because the removal of various traditions and rituals like religion etc have contributed to this void too and millennials have a particularly hard time because they're a generation who were brought up to be very good at following instructions. But this post is looking at younger people, people in my generation mostly looked at our parents and recoiled from their divorces, unhappy marriages, unhappy work lives etc.

The wretched world we’re living in at present was not an unlucky war of fate; it was an economic and political decision made without consulting the enormous human population that it would most drastically affect. If we would have it otherwise, if we’d prefer a future that we can call home, then we must stop supporting — even passively — this ravenous, insatiable conservative agenda before it devours us with our kids as a dessert. - Alan Moore

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post #7 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-11-2019, 03:17 AM
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no sexism or racism


just zero respect from humans

war against me.

therefore hating them all

No chance meet a human! portal/gateway of world lost

somewhat advantage. but receiving mountains of marketing.. jobz... taunts by email... YOU & .. YOU a Perfect fit...??? 100% YOU been unsuccessful. reasons never supplied. clear scenario of recruiters... if NOT AT WORK, NOW, NOW, TODAY, NOW, NOW? then worthless. once upon a time, finished a job, hell awaits. ONE instance of being unsuccessful leads to.. day 2? the majik threshold of 6 months! after which, a lifelong social prison. no wholesome life convict. 6 years, accurately!! 2013! each year passed by.. no hope. no more strings to add to bow. no experience or employer meeting allowed. this grade of famine, drought, flooding. life lost. no Oxfam jobz offered. how plain is this dimension? a political layer, maybe. gap outstretched. how many Hollywood actors not offered a role? always next day a new movie? how many actors get neglected, abandoned? same for sport? keep everything going. reliant on opportunity? if none, no control or choice? overlooked? ignored? coping a skill, advantage? ability? Resurrection? how? DIY?
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post #8 of 8 (permalink) Old 12-11-2019, 06:10 AM
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Class and materialist analysis is very important when factoring in identity. Feminism does address many of the issues that also affect men in society, but not neo/liberal feminism nor any kind of liberal politics, the former of which is represented most in the mainstream.
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