For New Readers: An Intro to the Men’s Rights Movement and the New Misogyny

MRAs, always complaining about something.

MRAs, always complaining about something.

If you’re one of the new readers who’ve come to this blog in recent days, and you’d like to get up to speed in a hurry on the Men’s Rights movement and all the other sorts of misogynists we discuss on this blog, here are some posts that you may find interesting and useful.

The Mammoth FAQ What I’m trying to do with the blog, as well as an explanation of the name.

White Hot Rage: A piece I did for The American Prospect reviewing Michael Kimmel’s Angry White Men and offering a critical overview of the Men’s Rights Movement.

Paul Elam of A Voice for Men: In His Own Words: Some truly reprehensible quotes from the most influential MRA online

Warren Farrell’s notorious comments on date rape: Not any more defensible in context than out of it A closer look at some infamous comments by Warren Farrell, author of The Myth of Male Power and the ideological grandfather of the Men’s Rights Movement

What Men’s Rights guru Warren Farrell actually said about the allegedly positive aspects of incest. A look at an exceedingly disturbing interview Farrell gave about his incest research in the 1970s.

Warren Farrell: Men Are Oppressed by Women’s Butts He actually seems to believe this.

Tell Her That Her Soul Is Dog-Sh*t: Dating advice from A Voice for Men

The Spearhead on the Slutwalks, Again Highlights — that is, lowlights — from a discussion of Slutwalks on the popular reactionary MRA site The Spearhead.

Return of Kings blog: High school girls are responsible for school shootings because they won’t have sex with nerds

Women! Why must you assault men with your evil sexy outfits?

Attention-seeking manosphere douchebag offers how-to guide for abusive boyfriends

Reno calls a domestic violence hotline: The MRA Reality Distortion Field in action A very revealing example of MRA “activism.”

These are just the tiniest tip of the iceberg. There are roughly 1800 more posts. Try clicking on the categories at the end of each post! Type random anti-woman slurs into the search box to see what comes up! Examples of misogyny amongst MRAs, PUAs, and the various other denizens of the manosphere are so common I could probably put up 20 posts  a day without running out of material.



About David Futrelle

I run the blog We Hunted the Mammoth, which tracks (and mocks) online misogyny. My writing has appeared in a wide variety of places, including Salon,, the Washington Post, the New York Times Book Review and Money magazine. I like cats.

Posted on May 25, 2014, in further reading, misogyny, MRA, PUA and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 52 Comments.

  1. Reblogged this on crazy dumbsaint of the mind and commented:

  2. This seems like as good post as any to ask, where did you get We Hunted The Mammoth from? Did some MRA “All the wonderful things straight white men have done” rant include it?

  3. Zolnier – yep, that’s it exactly. “We hunted the mammoth for you!” It’s been a joke here ever since.

  4. Just out of interest. Has there been a large increase in traffic to the blog since the MRM has been in news due to the UCSB shootings?

  5. white knight – I don’t know about views, obvs, but there have been more trolls in the threads about Rodgers’ murders, for sure.

  6. cassandrakitty

    Anything to do with PUA always makes the troll count spike, ime. There’s nothing like a threat to the idea of men’s sexual entitlement to really piss off the misters.

  7. Come to think of it, it’d mildly surprising some of the formerly regular trolls haven’t returned for this one – the PUAish types, I mean. Annoying flies and euroslime and that sort.

  8. @Zolner Yes. (Second question.)

  9. The Reno one still makes me bang my head.

    Reno calls the wrong hotline and is still offered help several times. Reno creepily demands access to a Women’s Shelter. MRAs see video and proclaim that men are doomed as no one would help Reno. Wut.

  10. Toolbox – even worse: the whole Reno thing was fake. He wasn’t making a genuine call for help, iirc.

  11. Now I’m interested in whether or not “cave-people” were big on dividing work by gender. Neanderthals I do know probably didn’t have as much sex-divided labour as Homo Sapiens, despite what Clan of the Cave Bear might tell you.

    And while sexism is of course old as dirt, the social infrastructure that allows for one member of a household to devote themselves exclusively to child rearing and household maintenance is fairly modern.

    For most of human history every member of a family had to do all they could to keep food on the table. A medieval peasant woman would have worked the fields alongside her husband and so would any of their children who were old enough to walk. And her husband probably wasn’t unfamiliar with the concept of keeping the house and children in order either.

    The big exception has always been the nobility, since they have little people to handle that stuff.

  12. Yeah, it was fake. The attempt was to prove how there’s male bias in these situations and a desperate man won’t be helped. Ironically, even Reno’s fake, barely coherent call was taken seriously – even after his random and unnerving demand for access to a woman’s shelter.

    There likely is problems for men fleeing abusive relationships, but acting like men won’t be taken seriously when you’ve successfully gathered evidence that they are taken seriously is…wow. You’d reckon that would be a point of celebration for a Men’s Rights group….

  13. Zolnier

    It derives from a spectacular degree of ignorance about hunter gatherer societies and how they worked; I’d like to name check Elaine Morgan who singlehandedly dragged the gathering part into the limelight.

    Until then most scientists vaguely knew that hunter gatherers did what it says on the tin, but they shortened it to hunter, leading to generations of people who believed that early men went off nobly hunting dangerous beasts whilst early women hung around back at the cave doing their nails and gossiping about their neighbours.

    Of course, MRAs still think that, since science is not their strong spot, but for the rest of the world it’s useful to know that any tribe relying on hunting mammoths, or any other large beast, would have died out very rapidly; without the gatherers there simply weren’t enough calories, not to mention vitamins, minerals etc, to survive…

  14. whilst early women hung around back at the cave doing their nails and gossiping about their neighbours

    And eating bon-bons. Never forget the bon-bons.

  15. Damn! I forgot the bonbons and the girls in the cave next door are never going to let me borrow their manicure sets ever again. Oh woe….

  16. Take them a selection of matching towels and Scented Fucking Candles and all will be forgiven!

  17. “…and the girls in the next cave next door are never going to let them me borrow their manicure sets ever again. Oh woe…”

    Let them all go to Hell except Cave 76!

    And are things that smell nice specifically for women now? I must have missed that at the last patriarchy meeting. All I remember from the last one is toasting to the Problem of Susan and arranging for another sitcom bemoaning the “man-cession”*

    *I feel so unclean using that term, is that cross dressing comedy where they claim that straight white men can’t get good work anymore dead yet?

  18. @white knight: While I don’t have access to statistics, I wouldn’t be surprised to learn that the shooting has in fact resulted in a sudden surge of new readers, as WHTM is one of the only sites that explicitly and repeatedly discusses Rodger’s violence in the context of his misogyny, rather than blaming it on his mental health like seemingly everyone else, which is concomitantly linked to by those with similar sympathies, and whose comment threads about it aren’t packed with infuriating bigotry (I personally refuse to read the comments of any other site aside from Pharyngula because I know exactly what I’m going to find.) Also I see that the number of subscribers by email has risen by close to two hundred in the past few days.

  19. Oh and may I say that We Hunted The Mammoth would be a great title for like a children’s time travel story.

  20. *I feel so unclean using that term, is that cross dressing comedy where they claim that straight white men can’t get good work anymore dead yet?

    Axed after two episodes.

  21. Comforting but it seems like most sitcoms with male leads at the moment are about patriarchal anxiety, and not in an interesting way.

  22. Reblogged this on seleukosnicator10 and commented:
    A good collection of the highlights of moronacy.

  23. Reblogged this on Dreams of the Shining Horizon and commented:
    Guess Dave Futrelle is getting a lot of new traffic in recent days. Here is a useful guide that will help you understand some of my own posts going forth.

  24. I am ashamed to admit that before these last few days all of this MRM nonsense was completely unknown to me. PUA’s, Incels etc etc. The more I read and discover there more I want to gouge my eyes out

  25. @cloudiah – it’s not the first time it’s happened THIS MONTH.

  26. St.FrancisisaSissy–I, too, was unaware of the scope of this MRA/PUA/MRM organized war on women. I consider myself relatively well-informed, but I had no idea of the depth and breadth of hatred. I read the murderer’s manifesto (for clinical reasons, not to give him the attention he so desparately wanted) as I’m a teacher/professor in psychology. Wow! The recipe for mass murder: 1. Take an invidual with antisocial personality disorder. 2. Give him the tacit backing of the MRA/PUA/MRM. = mass murder that will affect families of the victims forever. Also = supporters of MRA/PUA/MRM justifying his actions and explaining that if we women would have “put out”, this entire tragedy could have been prevented. It’s so sickening.

  27. So all (two) of my previous comments have been kept out. I’m trying again because live and learn. There is a FB page called “Elliot Rodgers is an American Hero” that FB won’t remove because it violates their terms of service but it’s about a dude who was half white so it doesn’t count or something. In case anyone cares.

  28. Phoenician in a time of Romans

    @Zolnier : Now I’m interested in whether or not “cave-people” were big on dividing work by gender. Neanderthals I do know probably didn’t have as much sex-divided labour as Homo Sapiens, despite what Clan of the Cave Bear might tell you.

    I dunno about cave-people, but Marvin Harris had some interesting speculation about misogyny in agricultural societies as being linked to the dominant technology for food production. In those societies where that technology required upper body strength, like plowing, men dominated and assumed they had the right to dominate, but in societies with other techniques, things were more equal.

  29. There have also been some shout-outs on twitter. I know I retweeted one.

  30. Zolnier – did you get a Welcome Package? There’s an explanatory link in there. The Scented Fucking Candles was something in a post from ages ago – it’s why David’s got the candle in the sidebar. Yup, they are totes misandry, as is having matching towel sets.

    Also, welcome, delurkers and newbies, and take your welcome packages, too! :)

  31. friday jones

    These onion Scented Fucking Candles are causing a single tear to track slowly down my right cheek.

  32. Towels that match your scented candles? Sounds good on paper but once you’ve used up the candles you’re either stuck with orphaned towels or you have to buy the same candles over and over. No wonder they make some people mad!

  33. From the little we did on it in our human evolution class yes, early humans appeared to have gendered division of labour, and in fact that is a defining characteristic of humans. Theorised to be a combination of living cooperatively and the fact childbirth and child rearing is such an enormous energy investment for us: so makes sense for men to do wider ranging jobs like hunting and scavenging and women to work closer to home digging for roots or otherwise gathering where they can watch children.

    There are theories around the benefit of living beyond reproductive years in that grandmothers helping to dig/gather/with childcare while younger women are breastfeeding offsets the extra energy cost of new children and their impact on the mother’s ability to work.

    I am definitely not explaining that as well as I’d like, but it’s really interesting.

  34. It’s a shame internet discourse on human societal evolution is so riddled with PINK BERRIES!!! It’s a fascinating subject.

  35. Towels that match your scented candles? Sounds good on paper but once you’ve used up the candles you’re either stuck with orphaned towels or you have to buy the same candles over and over. No wonder they make some people mad!

    I should have stuck a hyphen in there somewhere – it was “sets of matching towels,” not “towels that match the candles”.

    Though it would be added misandry if teh poor menz were sent out to buy replacement candles in the right colour. I can see we must take this up with the Feminist Hivemind Directorate.

  36. Flying Mouse

    Newly delurking after over a year of watching in both horror and delight.

    Thanks for all the hard work, David. And thanks for the welcome, everybody :)

    Question about the welcome package: are the penguins strictly there for delivery purposes, or will they be staying on? Where I live the daily highs have been around 90F, and I’m concerned about their welfare (especially considering that Spanx are not the most breathable of garments).

  37. I must ask, is the spinning seal part of the package? Because either way I’m taking it to pull my sleigh through the waters of Nhulunbuy, where it’s always summer and crocodiles but never schoolies or Steve Irwin.

  38. Holy crap. Boy have I missed this. The whole time I thought the ‘Men’s Rights Activists’ phrase had to do with those guys complaining about how custody rulings in divorce cases (in their view) favor mothers over fathers (i.e. those odd guys showing up in Batman costumes in Buckingham Palace etc).

    Jeeesh. What a bunch of horrible people from whom erupt a psychological rage at the collapse of some presumed patriarchal authority.

  39. enhancedvibes

    Hey y’all. Well, I did the stupid because i was bored this weekend and wanted to fuck with some MRAs on some forums. Now I am being followed on Disqus by a couple MRAs. I don’t know much about disqus, can one disallow someone following you? One of the doods who is following me even asked me if I posted on here, I ignored his question.

    What’s funny about it is that I actually don’t engage MRAs all that much because, whoa, scary, but wow, just wow. Just interacting with em confirmed so many things — I am so glad (and lucky) to have had awesomely loving parents growing up, so glad I was raised Jewish (because a lot of the fuct up shit they believe is how they were taught Christianity), they have poor debating skillz, lack consistency, apparently have never read the US Constitution, don’t understand the role of govt and finally do not understand how govt works. I would normally say bless their hearts here, if I actually care about them and their ilk.

    Can someone explain one thing to me? I don’t understand their relation between feminism and traditionalism. The majority of their positions reinforce traditionalism (and they all kept claiming they are not trad-cons, traditional conservatives), but they actually seem to believe that feminists promote traditional gender roles. I am honestly stumped by this because most feminists I know and/or read don’t care whether a woman selects a traditional gender role if that is her choice, but we certainly do not promote it as THE one role for women.

  40. @enhancedvibes

    Their assumption that we reinforce traditional gender roles comes from at least two things: their bootstrappy perspective of victmization and oppression and their poor understanding of feminist anti-rape and anti-abuse discourses.

    For instance, MRAs think that women who complain about harassment, non-violent rape, emotional abuse, etc. are just “perpetual victims” who have nothing to really complain about and should just get over what happens to them. In this sense, MRAs believe that feminism, by highlighting the plight of female rape victims and encouraging people to console them and not blame them, is really just perpetuating the stereotype that all women are weak. I’d say that’s pretty traditionalist of them, ironically.

    As for their misunderstanding of those discourses, I think a good example is their criticism of how feminists address the issue of female-on-male violence. They think that feminism is supporting the stereotype that women are incapable of physically assaulting men because feminism focuses primarily on female victims and male perpetrators.

  41. enhancedvibes


    Ohhhhh, so their lack of consistency in all of their beliefs is what makes them equate the two, lol. It was really funny when I asked them why they kept equating the two because some of them were all “because it’s true! nani nani boo boo” but others were parroting their own thoughts and yet did not realize the irony and when i pointed that out i got a lot of ” no no we’re not trad-cons” even though they believe most of what trad-cons believe because they’re also racist and homophobic. The circle jerk with them is nauseating. Thanks for your response!

  42. They’re very much like trad-con polemics who lament their opponents’ support for bullying victims and opposition to victim-blaming. Like it’s “emasculating men and boys” or whatever.

  43. I mean, really, it’s best to describe MRAs and their ilk as reactionaries in social justice clothing.

  44. The penguins and the spinning seal are part of the Welcome Package, but they are also fully autonomous beings, so they will only stick around in your neck of the woods if they want to and the conditions are good. Frankly, I am mystified as to why the penguins continue wearing those Spanx, but it’s their choice! And I suspect the spinning seal may welcome a visit to Nhulunbuy, but you’ll have to clear that with hir. XD

  45. Frankly, I am mystified as to why the penguins continue wearing those Spanx, but it’s their choice!

    They are self-conscious about their body image because of unrealistic portrayals of penguins by the media.

  46. I’m sure this has already been covered far better than me but I’ve just managed to articulate what in my opinion is the main difference between the new misogyny and the old misogyny. More modern expressions of misogyny tend to appropriate terminology from feminist (and other progressive movements) in order to frame themselves as being “the same but more”, while older expressions of misogyny tend to nakedly proclaim male supremacy and scoff at any attempt by women, or any other group that suffers under patriarchy, as somehow humorous and inherently doomed.

    Of course this false bravado also runs through MRA and other modern forms of sexism, hell this site’s current name is taken from a piece of patriarchal bragging. And you see the victim complex in old misogyny as well, especially when the term “femme fatale” comes up.

    I suspect I’m the last to finish line on this but I just wanted to see if it holds up to scrutiny.

  47. Argenti Aertheri

    As the person who added the penguins in spanx, Katz more or less nailed it. We had one whining about women hiding their fat with spanx and I didn’t want to just add it to the package and imply anyone might be in need of it, so what Katz said.

    Also, kittens, kittens are definitely part of the welcome package.

  48. Zolnier – you’re in the NT? ::waves from Melbourne::

    Don’t worry, I was hardly even in the race, never mind being last to the finish line. Thanks for that explanation, ‘cos I hadn’t got it at all.

  49. kittehs

    And eating bon-bons. Never forget the bon-bons.

    Yep, this. Because there were totally bon-bons in the paleolithic; in fact, there were mammoth-flavored* bon-bons! (Women had slightly different tastes back then.) Plus, no scented candles :(

    *other favorites included berries, nuts and auroch. Twoo fax!

  50. thanks, kittehs for the welcome package. i’m having such a great time reading past posts/comments that it’s hard to keep up with the new stuff.

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