Michael Kimmel (US)

International Authors' Stage

Tuesday 17 May 2016 at 20:00 The Queen's Hall

Faith, Feminism and Freedom (1:3) The Royal Library and Danish Women’s Society present the well-known sociology professor, who has studied gender inequality for 40 years: Feminisation is the solution, not the problem.

Michael Kimmel has written the much-discussed international non-fiction bestseller Angry White Men, with the telling subtitle American Masculinity at the End of an Era.

Kimmel has studied gender inequality for 40 years and for just as long a time has attempted to convince American men about the necessity – and excellence – of feminism. ‘The common way that we think about gender equality is as a zero sum game, so if women win, men lose,’ Kimmel has stated in an interview with The Washington Post. His own point is the opposite: more equality produces more satisfied women, more satisfied men – and more satisfied children.

Destructive masculine ideology
In an article in the periodical Kvinden & Samfundet [Woman & Society] (winter 2015) Charlotte Ferslev Møller has translated and adapted a text by Kimmel in which the American sociologist criticises the prevalent view that boys have a hard time of it and experience setbacks in today’s feminised institutional and educational environments. Kimmel sees things the other way round: the feminisation of society is not the problem but the solution for everyone:

Michael Kimmel will be in conversation with science and culture journalist Annette K. Nielsen (Foto: Suste Bonen) 

‘It is not the school experience that “feminizes” boys, but rather the ideology of traditional masculinity that keeps boys from wanting to succeed. [...] Perhaps the real man-haters are those who promise to save boys from the claws of the feminists. They do not recognize men’s ability to show compassion, care and love. But without that ability, should would then allow men to be parents? [...]

The anti-feminist experts have a rigid view of men as being quite horrendous. We men, they say, are wild, lustful, violent, sexually omnivorous, greedy predators who want to rape, murder, plunder and leave towels behind on the bathroom floor – unless women fulfil their biological mission and prevent us from doing that.

Whereas feminists believe that men are better than that, that boys can be reared to become competent and compassionate, ambitious and attentive, and that men are completely capable of loving and providing care and attention. It is in fact feminists who are pro-boys and pro-father – who want boys and their fathers to broaden the definition of masculinity and become whole human beings.’ 

Michael Kimmel's latest book is Angry White Men: American Masculinity at the End of an Era (2014).

Faith, Feminism and Freedom at The Black Diamond

This event is part of The Royal Library’s marking of the global conference Women Deliver, to be held in Copenhagen 16-20 May. 

17/5 Michael Kimmel
International Authors' Stage
18/5 Why Women?
Film screening 
19/5 Female Pioneers of Faith
Rabbi Delphine Horvilleur and imam Sherin Khankan.

Michael Kimmel is famous for his TED Talks and his studies on masculinity. Watch and listen to one of them here:


Michael Kimmel will appear on stage in The Black Diamond during the global Women Deliver-conference in Copenhagen – 16-20 May. 

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