Men Explain Things to Me was one of the books Patrick and Katie gave to Diane for her Birthday. After Diane read Men Explain Things to Me–before she lent the book to Katie to read–Diane suggested I read Rebecca Solnit’s book. The essay that became the title of the book refers to the tendency of some men to talk down to women, explaining the obvious. Men seem to think they know just about everything and women need “help” no matter what the subject is. Solnit sees this as a fundamental problem in conversations between men and women. Solnit’s other clever essays tackle the problems of rape, marriage equality, and Virginia Woolf’s concept of doubt and ambiguity. This short book, just over 100 pages, packs a wallop! GRADE: A
Men Explain Things to Me p. 1
The Longest War p. 19
Worlds Collide in a Luxury Suite: Some Thoughts on the IMF, Global Injustice, and a Stranger on a Train p. 41
In Praise of the Threat: What Marriage Equality Really Means p. 59
Grandmother Spider p. 69
Woolf’s Darkness: Embracing the Inexplicable p. 85
Pandora’s Box and the Volunteer Police Force p. 109
Image Credits p. 125
Acknowledgments p. 127

12 thoughts on “MEN EXPLAIN THINGS TO ME By Rebecca Solnit

  1. Jeff Meyerson

    Well, it’s our job to do this, right? Just kidding! I do explain certain things to Jackie – things she doesn’t understand, like football, but only if she asks. I know she has no interest in it. There’s a reason that “mansplaining” is a word now.

    1. george Post author

      Jeff, Rebecca Solnit discusses “mansplaining” and talking down to women in MEN EXPLAIN THINGS TO ME. I see it happening all the time in public.

    1. george Post author

      Rick, explaining the obvious to women demeans them. Rebecca Solnit provides plenty of evidence that many men assume they know way more than women do. The target audience for MEN EXPLAIN THINGS TO ME is everyone.

  2. Jim Harris

    This is a tremendous little book that everyone should read. What’s interesting is the most famous essay was not the most important one. I hope Solnit is read more than just for inspiring the mansplaining meme.


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