Respondent 417

Does patriarchy exist?


How would you define patriarchy?

A system of male control and influence over people who are not male, established across thousands of centuries.

How has patriarchy hurt you?

With women, sometimes I feel like I have to go out of my way to show that I mean no harm or that my motives are anything other than sexual — basically I don’t like being perceived as a potential creep. Pretty minor, I guess.

How have you hurt people in a way influenced by patriachy?

I don’t know about hurt, but a few times, I have probably been “that guy” who has bothered women at a bar or a dance party by a clumsy come on or by trying to chat them up when they aren’t interested. I actually feel really guilty about episodes like that…

How would you define masculinity?

A gestalt that encourages and prizes the values of action, physical strength, pushiness, competitiveness, stoicism, curtness, and sexual aggressiveness. None of these qualities are necessarily bad — it’s the privileging of them over others that is bad.

Does misandry exist?


Philosophically, yes, but not to an appreciable extent.

Have you experienced gender and/or sex related prejudice?


What best describes you?

A feminist

I am sensitive to women who object to men who call themselves feminists. I call myself one, and I volunteer for some feminist groups, but I realize that I need to do more of the hard work it takes to dissolve the patriarchy.