april 13, 2011 by camille hayes leave a comment
What would you call a guy who is on record saying that: 1. men sexually harass women out of respect for their social equality; 2. women are biologically programmed to desire Victorian-style housewifery over professional pursuits; 3. all straight women are basically prostitutes; and 4. feminism is not just bad, not just wrong, but actually evil. If you responded that you would call this guy “a dickhead,” you are only partially correct. The full answer is “a dickhead whose sexist drivel is repeatedly published by Psychology Today, which I’m sure has editors though you wouldn’t know it from reading this crap.”
Now, in fairness to Satoshi Kanazawa (for that is the dickhead’s name) he’s not the first person to publicly call the struggle for women’s equality “evil.” But you pretty much have to go back to the 1800s to find such reactionary screechings given a platform in an ostensibly mainstream/authoritative outlet like Psychology Today. I’d like to note here for the record that–quelle surprise!— Satoshi Kanazawa is an evolutionary psychologist. I’ve written before about my antipathy for evolutionary psychology; let’s just call Professor Kanazawa (of the London School of Economics, no less) exhibit 42-c in the ongoing demonstration of its uselessness. Kanazawa has so many nonsensical things to say about women and their proper role, and how men are being usurped, misunderstood and ill-used despite the preponderance of evidence that they run literallyeverything in the fucking world, that he hardly knows where to start. So he doesn’t ever really start his argument properly, nor does he finish it, nor does he offer much supporting evidence for his pseudo-biological conjectures other than the hazy intimation that “somebody has some data somewhere,” repeated often, in the hope of preemptively shutting up people like me.
Nice try, Satoshi! But I’m on to you and your old-school lady hating, and even more interestingly, I’m also on to Psychology Today. If you’d asked me last week what I thought of the magazine, I probably would have said something mildly critical about it popularizing misconceptions about what psychology is or dumbing down science. But now I know that they’re also a bunch of sexists—and not even very creative sexists at that—which is a much bigger problem in light of their pretensions to scientific objectivity, not to mention more fun for me to complain about. Big ups to Jezebel’s Tracie Egan Morrissey for alerting me to Kanzawa’s unfortunate existence, and for helpfully aggregating his misogynist maunderings so that I could be appalled by them at my convenience.