Saturday, December 28, 2013

Camille Paglia: A Feminist Defense of Masculine Virtues

Paglia has been banging this drum for a few weeks now, Drudge has been linking to her on this theme I think is interesting and I see a lot of truth in what she says here.

Write up by Weiss at WSJ here, excerpts:
'What you're seeing is how a civilization commits suicide," says Camille Paglia. This self-described "notorious Amazon feminist" isn't telling anyone to Lean In or asking Why Women Still Can't Have It All. No, her indictment may be as surprising as it is wide-ranging: The military is out of fashion, Americans undervalue manual labor, schools neuter male students, opinion makers deny the biological differences between men and women, and sexiness is dead. And that's just 20 minutes of our three-hour conversation.

Politically correct, inadequate education, along with the decline of America's brawny industrial base, leaves many men with "no models of manhood," she says. "Masculinity is just becoming something that is imitated from the movies. There's nothing left. There's no room for anything manly right now." The only place you can hear what men really feel these days, she claims, is on sports radio.
To judo this thing from Paglia here, I think females are often natural managers and fearless; and if economics is sometimes literally translated as "house-management" I often wish there was more female presence in economics which (not to denigrate the female economists I admire) is mostly imo an "All Male Review" (and reeeaallllly screwed up!)

Where are the females in economics?  Maybe a large part of the problem we face is due to the fact that imo females are at least under-represented in leading economic policy positions and in the academe.


Peter Pan said...

You can define 'masculine virtues' however you want. Why return to an outdated, overly romanticized model?

Perhaps women are viewed as too kind-hearted to be accepted into the world of big business and economics, where 'hard decisions' always have to be made.

Nebris said...

The harsh truth is that the Male has become essentially obsolete in a Modern Technological Civilization, a social structure that would function far more effectively if it was Female only.

I go so far as to proclaim that the Male is actually a danger to the present social order. One can more or less 'feminize' the major of Beta Males, but the Alpha Sociopaths will always reemerge.

And *those* bad boys will always fuck your shit up because they can summon the fighting spirit of the Betas.

What is constantly denied is that we men like to fight. Not necessarily war or killing per se, but the aggression and violent physical contact. It has a strong semi-sexual component.

When we were Hunters, such had a Pure Purpose.

But now we're largely drones, so those impulses get thrust into other places; war, rape, violent crime...and Capitalism, which is really the institutional legitimation of all those things.

Modern Women like to think they can control us, refashion us. Well no, you can't. We'll turn on you violently. And the Female has her own instincts as well. In the right conditions, the pheromones of the aggressive Male can make you stick your ass up in the air like a cat in heat.

Only the End of Men will give the Female true freedom.

Matt Franko said...


Humans are not Canines... this is a false metonymy you are bringing in here... then false metaphors follow like your use of alpha, beta, hunters, drones, cat in heat... I think that is all I see here in your paragraph...


Nebris said...


Matt Franko said...


Don't mention it, glad I could help...


Tom Hickey said...

Nebris makes an important point having to do with evolution and development. We now know that the answer to the ancient debate over innate ideas (Plato, rationalists) and the mind as a blank slate (Aristotle, Locke, empiricists) is that evolution genetically predisposes the species and language, cultural and institutions influences the groups "memetically." Therefore history is path-dependent and influenced by hysteresis not only through recent behavior but ancient roots.

There is also the teaching of perennial wisdom that evolution pertains not only to species but also individuals, so that impressions of previous experience carry over across physical lives. This is emerging in contemporary research with the study of the psychological unconscious since Freud, with Jung being an early pioneer.

From this perspective, the present is the cusp of past and future. Failure to sufficiently recognize the influence of the past on the present results in an inadequate appraisal of the human condition. Failure to recognize the potential for further development also results in failure to seize potential. Humans are influenced by the past but not stuck in the past either.

The challenge is to correctly observe and orient in taking decisions for action that shape the future. This is especially important wrt to decisions that shape institutions.

Matt Franko said...

Well I might agree that if one is led to believe that they evolved from a dog they might start to act like one Tom....


Nebris said...

"...and Matt counter punches with a hard False Equivalence!"

Tom Hickey said...

Well I might agree that if one is led to believe that they evolved from a dog they might start to act like one Tom....

The question is how (description) dispositional differences arise, and why (theoretical explanation). There are rational and scientific arguments that explain differences in disposition and how internal conflicts arise, and there are metaphysical and theological ones.

I'll take the account of evolutionary theory over the devil made me do it. :)

However, there is merit in your point, too. It is Herbert Spencer erroneous evolutionary theory rather than Darwin's that has stuck and is the foundation of "social Darwinism." It is basis of the competition as "survival of the fittest" that underlies the notion of vulgar capitalism, used to rationalize "doing what it takes."

However, it should be noted that Spencer's theories of laissez-faire, survival-of-the-fittest and minimal human interference in the processes of natural law had an enduring and even increasing appeal in the social science fields of economics and political science. 20th century thinkers such as Friedrich Hayek, Ludwig von Mises, Milton Friedman and Ayn Rand expanded on and popularized Spencer's ideas, while politicians such as Ronald Reagan and Margaret Thatcher enacted them into law. Wikipedia

Similarly, the notion of reincarnation and karma is often interpreted as fatalism, which again is the vulgar misinterpretation.

Matt Franko said...


You are the one bringing in the false conflation between humans and canines here, not me...

Can we stick to discussion of human beings?

Here is the recent Philosopher Wittgenstein on the problem with what you are doing:

"[Philosophical problems] are, of course, not empirical problems; but they are solved through an insight into the workings of our language, and that in such a way that these workings are recognized "

So what you are doing is starting out with the context that 'humans are canines' and then thru language bringing in all sorts of inapplicable terms from the study of canines like alpha, beta, etc... which you would never do if you didnt make the mistake of conflating humans with canines in the first place... now do you see how this works?

No human sociologist uses the same terms when describing human behavior as would a zoologist studying canines.... this is where the problems start.

Lets stick to a discussion of humans can we?


Matt Franko said...


Even if you have to believe in evolution, why do we want to "go back" and start to bring in what we perceive may be old ancient behavior characteristics of "dogs" or "bees" or "chimpanzees" or whatever we evolved AWAY from to explain modern human behavior?

(Not picking on Nebs here I see this type of thing all the time from people other than Nebs....)

Didnt we 'evolve' and advance past those other species or whatever? And those other species characteristics are not applicable to humans by definition under the theory of evolution?

"I'll take the account of evolutionary theory over the devil made me do it."

Remember Flip Wilson LOL!

I dont see this "the devil made me do it" as an assertion at least made in the Greek scriptures Tom, I see the lessons there as 'the devil' or whatever you want to call it somehow COVERS the truth for many of us and then these people act in untruth...

Like "we're out of money!" eg, this is not that "the Devil made me think we are out of money" but rather, somehow people cannot see that we humans have full authority to create as much "money" as we think is necessary to achieve just and righteous public purposes, which is the truth, BUT this remains COVERED for those that cannot see this and the 'covering' is 'made' out of inapplicable metonymy and the false metaphor that always follows... "govt is household: etc..."

The Lord put it thus: "Stupid and blind!" Mat 23

So it is not that "the devil made me do it" its that "the devil has blinded me and thus I am made stupid" type of thing to me, then we get "we're out of money!", "borrowing from children", etc all these nonsense/moron statements... they are a product of an initial blindness imo...

Here's Paul: "it is covered in those who are perishing,
4 in whom the god of this eon blinds the apprehensions of the unbelieving" 2 Cor 4:3

I think Wittgenstein saw this phenom at least at some level and figured out how it works or at least some very key aspects of this operation to "blind" we humans via language/linguistics ...


Tom Hickey said...

Even if you have to believe in evolution, why do we want to "go back" and start to bring in what we perceive may be old ancient behavior characteristics of "dogs" or "bees" or "chimpanzees" or whatever we evolved AWAY from to explain modern human behavior?

Because we bring the past along with us. The biblical narrative of the Fall is a teaching story that encapsulates a midrash. But if it is taken as literally as historical and biological truth, it obscures the reality of that evolution builds on past successes and selects out that which is unsuccessful. Humans are much more determined by the past, including the very long past, than most suspect.

On the other hand, the import of the Genesis teaching story is that humans also have "a better nature." This dichotomy is further illustrated in the story of Cain and Able, again a teaching story about the conflict between these natures.

The same distinction is drawn in many ancient mythologies, such as the opposition between the Chthonic and Apollonian in ancient Greece. We often interpret these myths today as prescientific explanation but in their day they served as teaching stories. which is what Native Americans called them and recognized that biblical narratives were similar teaching stories.

It's not a matter of choosing between Rousseau's noble savage and Hobbes's law of the jungle but reconciling them.

Instead, a lot of so-called civilization and culture was papering over humans similarities with animals, to the degree of claiming that humans had properties essentially different from animals, such as "reason" or "soul."

This view no longer stands up to scrutiny. Humans are a product of evolution and bring their evolutionary past along with them. A lot of people are realizing this at present and it is permeating the culture, which in some ways is a good thing. On the other hand, to the degree that encourages thinking that humans are "nothing but" that detrimental

Perennial wisdom teaches that there is also a deeper dimension to evolution than science has penetrated to. It's necessary to see things from a wider perspective to achieve balance.

Peter Pan said...

Click on Nebris and read their blog, The Explanation.

Nebris said...

Bob, this is more up to date:

Nebris said...

Matt, I'm not sure where you get this whole 'dog thing'. The terms Alpha and Beta are fairly standard throughout psych and behavioral science. And Drone is usually related to insects, though it too has been used regarding humans operating in a hive-like paradigm.

But clearly you're obsessed with it as I did not mention dogs anywhere in my comments. Maybe you were one in a past life.

Matt Franko said...

Well if I was one I was an alpha I'm sure! ;)


If those terms are used in the conduct of human behavioral science then I submit that those scientists are not very good scientists.

If the evolutionary 'branch off' or whatever between humans and canines or bees was BEFORE those two species developed these social characteristics, then logically any characteristics of those two species have NO applicability to we humans... our inate behaviors are completely independent and exclusive.... including the relationship between the sexes...


And btw nobody 'puts their ass up in the air' or whatever...

Nebris said...

"And btw nobody 'puts their ass up in the air' or whatever..."

*snicker* You're a virgin, aren't you?

Peter Pan said...

How did you happen to find this blog, Nebris?

The Rombach Report said...

"Only the End of Men will give the Female true freedom."

Women do not truly appreciate how much power they have over men. If they did, it really would be the end of men. I think if God created anything better than women, He kept it to Himself. ;-)