The man, 39-year-old Tom Martin, based in London, began pursuing an MSc degree in gender, media and culture at the LSE’s Gender Institute in October 2009. He withdrew six weeks later, citing “anti-male discrimination” in the coursework.
“Its programs actively block men’s discourse and perpetuate the men-bad, women-good dialogue,” Martin told me by phone yesterday. “I want gender studies to be more inclusive for men.”
Its programs block men’s discourse?! Oh.my.god. That’s so terrible, when men have been silenced for so long. What’s that men-bad, women-good dialogue though? I’ve never heard of that. It sounds like a hell of a boring dialogue, as well as kind of stupid.
Martin, who calls himself a “feminist” and a “men’s rights activist,” said he did a line-by-line analysis of the core texts taught in the gender classes and decided they were “overwhelmingly negative on men, blamed men for women’s perceived inequalities, and complained about misogyny but never spoke about misandry [which is defined as the hatred of men].” Martin declined to provide me with a list of the texts.
Ohhhhh that. Right. Now I know where we are. (I spent a fair amount of time there myself recently. Funny what a malodorous place it turned out to be.) He calls himself a feminist MRA and he thinks women have gone past equality into privilege and that “misandry” is comparable to misogyny (and he keeps his list of texts a secret).
While Martin claims he’s after egalitarianism only, some of his views may raise eyebrows. “I don’t buy that women were oppressed by men historically,” he said. “There’s a perverse incentive in gender studies to preserve the inequalities that women face.” He also believes that men are the “victims” of prostitution, that women “volunteer” into sex trafficking and that women’s “hysterical” fear of rape damages equality.
Check check check. He’s learned his lines well.