About the show: Dave Pickering takes us on a personal journey through gender as he tries to explain masculinity both to you and to himself. Part true storytelling, part TED talk and part apology, the show looks at how the patriarchy hurts men too; how the patriarchy has hurt him, and how he has hurt people because of patriarchy. Drawing on an anonymous survey of 1000 men, feminist theory, internet memes and his life experience, Dave will explain the conclusions he Read More ...
Does patriarchy exist?
How would you define patriarchy?
It’s not for me to say. I understand it’s something that makes things worse for women and men, but since women get the worst of it, I should leave it to them to define. If anything, I’d say it was a systematic reinforcement of male privilege, held in place by the relentless upholding of primacy for the male voice in culture.
How has patriarchy hurt you?
It’s put things in such a state that, even as a man who acknowledges things are badly wrong and would like to help make them better, I feel terrified to speak in public in case I get something wrong and make things worse. I have struggled all my life with very low self esteem, and to know that I am part of something dreadful doesn’t help with that. I honestly don’t feel I can say much more here, even anonymously, since it doesn’t feel like something I’m entitled to talk about, and I’m increasingly comfortable with that.
How have you hurt people in a way influenced by patriachy?
It took me until my twenties to even acknowledge it was a problem, and I said and did a lot of ignorant and damaging things before I faced up to the way the world really was. In my late teens / early twenties I saw no problem with joking about rape, for example, and falling into a lot of the misogynist bullshit thinking that MRAs/”nice guys” use to process their anger with the world. It also took me into my mid twenties to properly address and control enormous anger management issues, because I grew up in a culture that made it very easily to believe that male aggression and loss of control is perfectly acceptable and normal.
How would you define masculinity?
I honestly don’t know where to start with this. If I’m honest, I’d say it’s not really something that matters to me.
Does misandry exist?
This is a hell of a difficult one; I feel like I’m sitting a multiple choice question in a personality quiz where the wrong option will peg me as a scumbag. The reason I’ve said maybe is that the way people use this term is HUGELY loaded; some fools use it to bleat about being persecuted by women, but then again sometimes women use it as a cathartic rallying cry and revel in it. The latter makes me feel awful inside, if I’m honest, but then who am I to say it’s wrong? As ever, best to shut up, listen, and not be part of the problem.
Have you experienced gender and/or sex related prejudice?
Only in a way that has advantaged me
What best describes you?
Qualification: while I’ll say this to friends, I would be desperately afraid to say this in public; not because I’m ashamed of it, but because I know it might make some feminists angry. Again; I don’t feel I have a right to have an authoritative opinion on any of this, so I don’t feel it’s up to me to define what I am.