Camille Paglia has been trolling since before trolling was A Thing. She's the OG of barfing up archaic assertions about women, men, and feminism, justifying them with sweeping, unverified statements, and dressing them up with $2 words, and calling it new. Her latest, "It's A Man's World, And It Always Will Be" is so absurd that it doesn't merit a response; it merits an edit.
Paglia doesn't exactly have a history of saying things that make any damn sense. Most recently, she yammered on about Katy Perry and Taylor Swift being awful because they are The Bad Kind Of Pop Star, then lauded "bootylicious, confident urban women" because they are The Good Kind of Pop Star. During the 2008 election, she compared Sarah Palin's incoherent and endless run-on sentence style of talking to listening to some pretty excellent jazz and declared her the savior of "third world feminism." She's endlessly weird about fetishizing women of color as paragons of hotness (that makes a cameo in the piece you're about to read) and repeatedly slapping the air around her for invisible, vague feminists who hate all men and want sex to end forever. Planet Paglia is one where white bitches are hating men and fun and the only people who can save it are movie versions of hyper sexualized women of color. It's refried bullshit is what it is.
So here are some selections from Paglia's latest, called "It's A Man's World, And It Always Will Be" (pRoVoCaTiVe!) with notes.
A peevish, grudging rancor against men has been one of the most unpalatable and unjust features of second- and third-wave feminism [Citation needed]. Men's faults, failings and foibles [Like? Aggression? War? Rape? Dick-waving? The Jackass franchise? What?] have been seized on and magnified into gruesome bills of indictment [By whom?]. Ideologue professors [Who?] at our leading universities [Which ones?] indoctrinate impressionable undergraduates [How? Are you implying that young people internalize ideologies simply by hearing them once? How is this indoctrination occurring] with carelessly fact-free [Odd hyperbole] theories alleging that gender is an arbitrary, oppressive fiction with no basis in biology [Bold statement. Source?].
Is it any wonder that so many [How many?] high-achieving young women, despite all the happy talk about their academic success [Cite examples here, otherwise it just sounds like you're talking out of your ass], find themselves in the early stages of their careers in chronic uncertainty or anxiety [See previous note about ass-talking] about their prospects for an emotionally fulfilled private life [See two previous notes about the origin of talking w/r/t Your Ass]? When an educated culture routinely denigrates masculinity and manhood [Clarification needed here to explain what your argument even is. What is manhood? What is masculinity? A John Wayne movie? Like, Iroquois manhood? Mustaches? Fatherhood? Dressing in plaid shirts? Dying of prostate cancer? Can the men be gay? Can the men be peaceful? You're assuming your audience understands dog whistle shorthand that only exists in your brain.] then women will be perpetually stuck with boys, who have no incentive to mature or to honor their commitments.
From my long observation [Anecdata], which predates the sexual revolution [Cut this; reminding readers that you formed your opinion before hippie-times doesn't add to your cred; it makes you seem doddering], this remains a serious problem afflicting Anglo-American society, with its Puritan residue [Sounds like a euphemism for dried ejaculate; cut]. In France, Italy, Spain, Latin America, and Brazil, in contrast, many ambitious professional women [How many?] seem [Ugh] to have found a formula for asserting power [Statistics? Something? Back this up please? Careful with the "Latin America, sexy feminist wonderland" stereotype; easily disprovable, or at least vehemently argued against. Also kind of in line with troublesome "sexy brown chick" trope you keep going back to; careful here] and authority in the workplace while still projecting sexual allure and even glamor [Oy.]. This is the true feminine mystique, which cannot be taught but flows from an instinctive recognition of sexual differences [Girl what are you even talking about here? Get some new cultural references].
Over the past century, it was labor-saving appliances, invented by men [Fact check: The dishwasher, foot pedal trashcan, disposable diapers, the electric hot water heater, the ironing board, and the rolling pin were all invented by women] and spread by capitalism [Men who went to work ostensibly utilizing the following technology: windshield wipers, circular saws, train chimneys, engine mufflers, Kevlar, computers — all of which were invented by or with indispensible contributions of women], that liberated women from daily drudgery [No.].
After the next inevitable apocalypse [Okay. That is your argument. Men aren't over because the world is ending. Okay. Okay. Got it.], men will be desperately needed again [Again, not sure you established that men aren't needed now...]! Oh, sure, there will be the odd gun-toting Amazonian survivalist gal, who can rustle game out of the bush and feed her flock [Who is this piece about? Women who have children without men around? Childless young women with academic accomplishments? Why is the subject of this piece constantly morphing?], but most women and children will be expecting men [Citation needed] to scrounge for food and water and to defend the home turf [Just to review: we're now arguing that gender roles must exist because after a theoretical apocalypse, women and children will "expect" men to fend for them? That's what's happening here? Okay.]. Indeed, men are absolutely indispensable right now, invisible as it is to most feminists [Citation needed], who seem blind to the infrastructure that makes their own work lives possible [Who hurt you, Camille?]. It is overwhelmingly men who do the dirty, dangerous work of building roads, pouring concrete, laying bricks, tarring roofs, hanging electric wires, excavating natural gas and sewage lines, cutting and clearing trees, and bulldozing the landscape for housing developments [Who is this argument against?]. It is men who heft and weld the giant steel beams that frame our office buildings, and it is men who do the hair-raising work of insetting and sealing the finely tempered plate-glass windows of skyscrapers 50 stories tall [Ok.]. Every day along the Delaware River in Philadelphia, one can watch the passage of vast oil tankers and towering cargo ships arriving from all over the world [Don't mention that you hang out in Philadelphia; undermines credibility]. These stately colossi are loaded, steered, and off-loaded by men. The modern economy, with its vast production and distribution network, is a male epic, in which women have found a productive role—but women were not its author [They just made every man who ever existed inside of their bodies; nbd]. Surely, modern women are strong enough now to give credit where credit is due!
Camille, please see me after class.
I need to lie down.