Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Vindication, from Philosophy Bro

Philosophy is hard - I read and summarize, so you don't have to, man.
So this month we are looking at Mary Wollstonecraft's A Vindication of the Rights of Woman, and how that dense eighteenth century prose - polemic and philosophical - has been adapted to the needs of the readers of today. We looked at resources old and new and squashed. The most irreverent version I've come across is the Philosophy Bro, snugly anonymous (yes, I do mean snugly, as in sitting snugly by the fire)  - "just a bro who likes philosophy" - and takes requests: "Maybe you've got a big paper coming up, and you haven't done the reading. Maybe there's this guy you've heard about, but you don't have the time to wade through the text yourself. Whatever, bro, I don't judge." He also has a clear copying policy, less generous than the Squashed Philosopher, but completely fair, allowing anyone to "excerpt your favorite paragraph or two and link to the rest of it". So that's what I'll do here.

His take on A Vindication starts  
Do you want to know why women fit your stereotypes of stupid, silly creatures? Because they're taught that it's the only way to be. That's what happens when all the bros running education just want pretty idiots to take as mistresses instead of smart ladies to take as wives. Every girl is being taught by these assholes, so if you're frustrated that your wife is like a mistress who spends her time shopping instead of putting out, stop pointing fingers, bro. No wonder she wants nothing more than to shop and drink tea - I don't care how resilient you are, twenty years of being told pretty is the highest value and eventually anyone would start to believe it.
And ends with:
Look, if you want women to stop being weak, stupid complainers who waste money, start educating them. Even I think women are dumb as shit, and I am one. They read bullshit romances and believe in horoscopes and thinks with their hearts instead of their brains. And for thousands of years you've been like, "What's up with dumb bitches?" all while you crank them the fuck out like it's your job. It's time to try something new: teach them reason, and see if they aren't more reasonable. Let them think, and see if they don't. Encourage them to raise their kids and be kind to their servants, and see if they aren't so moody all the time.

In conclusion, it's no fucking wonder bros are awesome; women could be great too, if you would just let them. 
The comments are interesting. "An Art Professor" writes:
I just checked out your tshirts. What is up with the bitches ones? That's never going to be ok. It perpetuates "with humor" the lasting, brutally damaging stereotypes that we still suffer from. Humor about "hoes" and bitches" is one of the most insidious and fucked up things that still lingers.
One response, half a year later:
Dear "Art Professor", it's okay, calm down. You're just "of a different generation", so to speak.
- an anti-kyriarchal (post?)feminist
Another, perhaps the most heartening:
As a bro - and one who read Wollstonecraft - I would like to thank you so much for this piece. I've always believed that real men are Feminists, because strong bro's have nothing to fear from equality, and smart women, confident women are hot!


  1. Yeah! I can dig it, man. Smart chicks are cool, and often Hot,too. Nice.

  2. Philosophy Bro sounds like a charmer.

  3. Yo, Do' & 'go. I think this philo-bro has a line in the ho-ho-ho -- as in LOL, but also what he knows of the hoes. Say no to the aggro - it takes all sorts to make the world go.