Tuesday 10th October 2017, 8:00pm
Session 181: “Men Explain Things to Me” by Rebecca Solnit
For this Theory Tuesdays session, Rebecka Domig selected the essay “Men Explain Things To Me” by Rebecca Solnit (Haymarket Books, 2015).
Rebecca Solnit’s essay “Men Explain Things to Me” is what might be called a meta-essay of sorts. It generated the term “mansplaining”, which gave women a word to describe condescending interactions they’ve had with men, and resulted in countless Buzzfeed articles, tweets and Facebook stories, Buzzfeed articles about said tweets and Facebook stories, and on and on.
Solnit’s now famous essay, is however, above all, a brilliant and comic piece of writing. Describing some of her own hilariously awful encounters, she pinpoints what so often goes wrong in conversations between men and women, especially when men wrongly assume they know things and wrongly assume women don’t.
Rebecca Solnit is a prolific author (17 books to date!), historian, activist and contributing editor to Harper’s.