THE MALE ORDEAL: Role Crisis in a Changing World by

THE MALE ORDEAL: Role Crisis in a Changing World

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Condolences for the forlorn gender: when his wife leaves after the children are raised, Mr. Big-Shot Corporate Executive seems to fall apart, evidently because of his ""powerful fear of rejection"" underneath all the self-reliant bravado. Hassled by the demands of women's liberation--not necessarily because he disagrees but because he cares so passionately that he has to sit back awhile and think about it--modern man is victimized by what the authors call ""the new misandry."" That's about the gist of it, though the authors hide behind a succession of quotes from 31 interviews to fill in some of the gaps--like the fact that men are more comfortable with women's economic liberation than with their sexual liberation (impotence being the primary sign of discomfort with the latter state of affairs). And, oh yes, men are beginning to talk a little more openly about things like jealousy and the need for sexual exclusivity with their women (if they try to deny their impulses, the indicated result is eventual disaster). When women are quoted, they tend to equate men with Nazi guards in a concentration camp, or such-like. It's a secretly angry book, cloaking itself in an attempt to defend men's commitment to the merits of each separate issue; and as such it will probably appeal to neither the openly angry nor the genuinely thoughtful.

Pub Date: Aug. 12th, 1981
Publisher: Putnam