After Women’s Studies gained a foothold in academia, a few researchers began to focus on Men’s Studies, which emerged as a complementary discipline. Together the two areas make up Gender Studies at most universities. Both fields of study focus on gender as a social construct, and minimize biological differences between the sexes. Male Studies will specifically focus on the ways in which men and women are fundamentallly different at a genetic level, in an effort to understand and support boys and men.
The gathering was co-chaired by Lionel Tiger, Professor of Anthropology at Rutgers, and author of the book The Decline of Males. The other chair was Christina Hoff Sommers, a one-time prominent feminist turned critic, and author of the book The War Against Boys: How Misguided Feminism Is Harming Our Young Men.
I Have a Dog In This Fight
I care deeply about this issue because I am concerned for the welfare of both men and women in aggregate, particularly as it relates to relationships. However, I have also witnessed alarming “feminization” of the male population in public schools, and have long suspected it is extremely harmful to males. Sommers book is well worth reading for a full exploration of the issue, but I’ll share my own story:
When my son entered Kindergarten, he was assigned a teacher who was young and extremely popular with parents. We were delighted. During the course of that year, he was sent to the principal’s office, and I was called, for all of the following offenses:
“Showing off” his ability to read early (having taught himself via Sesame Street).
Saying the word penis on the playground.
Having “ants in his pants” (which led to a staff meeting about whether he might have ADD).
Hitting another boy over the head with an empty plastic lunchbox during an argument (Discipline for this offense is appropriate, but it was implied that this act revealed real pathology).