Vintage Scan #28: 1974 World Book on Being Male

So, I was looking through a World Book Encyclopedia Year Book from 1974 and found an article titled "Growing Up Male in America" by Warren T. Farrell.  I thought it might be worth a glance just for comparison's sake to 2014.

The early seventies were all about being "Free to be You and Me"; gender stereotypes were frowned upon. Rosey Grier told boys it's alright to cry and sew, and Billy Jean King showed us that even in sports, the playing field was being leveled.  .But how much was actually being taken to heart in American homes, and how much stuck in the ensuing decades?

Cooks are like rock stars now, so it's definitely not considered an effeminate profession.  However, how much cooking in the home is done these days by the guys?  I'm willing to wager it's still primarily the wife/mother doing the job.... which seems like a raw deal considering she more than likely works as well.  Now she gets to work 8 to 5 and cook.  How's that for Women's Lib?  No doubt, the fact that the hubbies haven't picked up the slack has led to the fast food boom.

Forty years later, and I'll bet shop classes are still pretty much all male.  I think this is a combination of social stigma and genetics.  Let's face it, there are actually differences between the sexes besides just reproductive anatomy.  I can't help but wonder if the anti-gender stereotype movement went a bit too far, ignoring very real differences in our hard wiring.

Um, hello?  Advertisers always have and always will exploit our insecurities.  Men are not unique in this regard - women are targeted as well, but with a different set of buttons to push (ex. being skinny)

Oh, poor baby - stuck with the check.  At least he's not the waiter who can't even afford to feed his family or have health insurance.  I wonder if we have moved on from this gender-neutral nonsense because there are simply much bigger, more important issues to deal with.

I mean, equal opportunity for women is a must... but whether Johnny feels bad about himself because he likes to crochet seems a waste of our mental resources.  Guess what, Johnny?  You're probably going to have to pay for dinner.  Deal.

Jeez, this article is oh so very Caucasian.  Which brings up another 'deep thought' - is the gender divide even greater among blacks? Or is it pretty much the same no matter the race?

The bottom line is this: "Free to be You and Me" shouldn't mean we are separate and totally distinct from our gender. Like or not, we are forever tied to our chromosomes, and a look at any karyotype will demonstrate quickly that guys and girls are not the same. So, they're naturally going to congregate at social gatherings because they often have more in common.

Read the following paragraph in a sarcastic, condescending tone:

Those poor disparaged cheerleaders.  Relegated to the sidelines in a supporting role.... we should all say a silent prayer for the cheerleaders of the nation.  Yes, they're invariably the most popular girls in the school, but slaves to the gender curse.



  1. I was a cheerleader in high school. It was awesome.

  2. Are you familiar with the rich vein of awfulness perpetrated by Mr Farrell in later times? He's become the (not-entirely-unwilling) poster boy for the execrable "Men's Rights" movement in the states, and gone on public record talking about how potentially awesome father-daughter incest could be if we weren't all so uptight and man-hating.

    1. What? No, I had no idea. Interesting.... and highly disturbing.

    2. OBloodyHellJanuary 12, 2014

      Oh, yes, DOCTOR Warren Farrell is SUCH an awful person. His book titles offend feminists and their lackeys just by actually asking reasonable questions:
      Why Men Earn More: The Startling Truth Behind the Pay Gap -- and What Women Can Do About It

      The Myth of Male Power

      Why Men Are the Way They Are
      Here are his books:

      Examples of his "execrable" questions, so odiously posed, are:

      "[Feminism has] focused on the fact that women as a group earned less --
      without focusing on any of the reasons why women earned less, [such as:]
      full-time working men work an average of 9 hours per week more than full-time
      working women; men are more willing to relocate to undesirable locations, to
      work the less desirable hours, and to work the more hazardous jobs."

      "Sexism, we have been told, made men powerful and women powerless. The
      reality is somewhat different. For centuries, neither sex had power. Both
      sexes had roles: She raised the children, He raised the crops/money. Neither
      sex had options, both sexes had obligations. If both sexes had traditional
      obligations, it is more accurate to call it sex roles than sexism.
      Men's roles didn't serve thier interests any more than women's roles served
      women's interests. Instead, both roles served the interests of survival."

      "[The question men need to ask, is:] 'Is earning money that someone else
      spends really power?'"

      "Today, when the successful single woman meets the successful single man,
      they appear to be equals. But should they marry and contemplate having
      children, she almost invariably considers three career options:

      1) work full time
      2) mother full time
      3) some combination of 1 and 2

      He, too, considers three options:

      1) work full time
      2) work full time
      3) work full time

      Enter the era of the multi-option woman and the no-option man."

      You can understand how awful Dr. Farrell is from his audacity to think these questions (from "The Myth Of Male Power") might be of significance.

      As to wolfboy's claim regarding Farrell advocating "father-daughter incest", I'd like to see the citation for it to see what Farrell ACTUALLY said in CONTEXT. You'll pardon me for not taking his claim at face value.

    3. OBloodyHellJanuary 12, 2014

      Here's a couple more of Farrell's comments in TMOMP:

      "The political genius of the feminist movement was its sense that it could
      appeal to all women only by emphasizing expansion of rights and opportunities
      and avoiding expansion of responsibilities. Had the National Organization for
      Women fought to register 18 year old girls for the draft, it might have lost
      members. Had feminism emphasized women's responsibilities for taking sexual
      initiatives, or paying for men's dinners, or choosing careers they liked less
      in order to support adult men better, its impact would have been more
      egalitarian but less politically successful."

      "Essentially, women's liberation and men's mid-life crises were the same
      search for personal fulfillment, common values, mutual respect, and love. But
      while women's liberation was thought of as promoting identity, men's mid-life
      crises were thought of as identity crises.
      Women's liberation was called insight, self-discovery, and self-improvement,
      akin to maturity. Men's mid-life crises were discounted as irresponsibility,
      self-gratification, and selfishness, akin to immaturity. Women's crises got
      sympathy, men's crises got a bad rap."

      "The U.S. Census Bureau found that as early as 1960, never-married women over
      45 earned more in the workplace than never-married men over 45."

      Farrell makes a lot of pretty significant, well-reasoned points in Why Men Earn More, as well.

      Actually refuting him would be work, if it were possible at all -- so it's much better to just name call, and refer to the "rich vein of awfulness" he perpetrates. No need for the reader to actually look at what he says -- it's just "execrable" and needs no further consideration. :-S


    4. Farrell was once one of the first male feminists and worked closely with Gloria Steinem.He then understandably grew disillusioned with certain aspects of feminism, especially in its views towards men,
      As a woman, who has heard him speak on several issues several times (have to wonder if WolfBoy has)I can say he tells many truths. There is nothing even slightly sexist or misogynistic in his discourse, unless you consider caring and worrying about men and boys as such. The very reason people scoff at the idea of men having to deal with issues is exactly why he is needed,

  3. We had World Book when I was a kid, and I always looked forward to the Yearbooks. One year, in the late 60s or early 70s, they did an article about the state of entertainment in America. One of the photos was captioned something like, "An unknown street performer in San Francisco." Look close. It's Robin Williams.

    1. OBloodyHellJanuary 12, 2014

      LOL, I recall a popular run of Levi's 501 Jeans commercial from the 80s. In one, there's this guy dancing down the street looking cool... he does a spin move, and his sunglasses fly off... he just shrugs, and keeps on dancing down the street. Look close -- it's Bruce Willis. :-D

  4. Pictures 5 and 6...... Is that a faint odor of pancakes or is it just me?

  5. That's if the school even HAS shop classes. Many of those programs which teach useful skills are going by the way side so to "focus on the core" so kids get into college. It's sad, and I am a college prof.

    I took shop and have used some of those skills (infrequently). My little brother took the home ec route, and he was crazy like a fox. 1) compare the number of times you need to use a lathe vs a stove, 2) you get to eat your homework, 3) that's where all the girls were.

  6. In NYS all middle school kids have to take both "shop" (now called "technology") and "home ec" now called (family and consumer sciences). In my day and yours just the gals took home ec and boys took shop.

    My beef is the last photo. I think it is a sin to wear a skirt that completely blends in with the wallpaper! That was the real shame of the 70s!

    1. OBloodyHellJanuary 12, 2014

      LOL, to be honest, though, look at the pants of the guy sitting down in the same pic. They'd be lost against the background, too, if he were standing there.

      It's funny how bad clothes from that era look these days. We really didn't think they looked bad at the time, though...

  7. }}} Oh, poor baby - stuck with the check. At least he's not the waiter who can't even afford to feed his family or have health insurance.

    Not any more, thanks to ObamaCare. I knew quite a few waitrons who bought their own, until ObamaCare cut their hours back to part time, caused the affordable insurance options that they had to disappear, and generally got screwed over by this. Waiters and waitresses outside of greasy spoons have often made quite decent money. I was a BUSBOY in the mid-70s who got a piece of the waitrons tips and still made as much as my mother, a professional bookkeeper, per hour.