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Privilege and the Victimized Man

This post will be fairly long and likely pretty dramatic. So, fair warning.

Hello all, I am a man, 23 years of age, in Colorado. This summer I decided to take my first Women’s Studies course. I am on the ground floor, I guess you could say, of this grand structure that is feminism. I have relished the learning experience. I have taken comfort in thought and there is so much thought to be had in this experience.

But I am facing some conflicts. I’m not exactly sure where I fit in with this movement. I am the spitting image of privilege. White, male, upper-middle class (dad’s a doctor), college-bound. There is the obvious fact that I can’t really know what it’s like to be a woman in this culture, but the readings for this class have thrown more and bigger wrenches into the works. Recently we read a speech that the venerable Andrea Dworkin gave to a "Men’s Movement" in the early 80’s (link ) in which she, in no uncertain terms, places the blame for all sexual assaults at the feet of men like myself, particularly the "sensitive and aware" ones. She contends that our bad feelings are evasions, and the continuation of our current culture is evidence enough of our failure to commit to doing the right thing.

I think a lot of men would balk when faced with rhetoric like this. A lot of women would as well. But I was ...

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