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The Will to Change: Men, Masculinity, and…
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The Will to Change: Men, Masculinity, and Love

by bell hooks

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Whenever you read a book for school there is always the possibility of just skimming, not quite absorbing everything but taking away just enough to use in class discussion. Unfortunately I started reading this book in that mode, but the great thing about bell hooks is that she makes her writing so accessible that the next moment you're turning pages at lightning-speed. Your thoughts expand inside your head, augmented by emotion, until you feel as if the potential of her ideas and the utter truth of her words is more than you can bear. By book's end you're exhilarated with hope. THE WILL TO CHANGE is another great gift from a wonderful feminist. ( )
  marthaearly | Jun 6, 2014 |
I enjoyed this book. hooks' almost gentle and kind way of looking at how the current social ambience (she uses the term patriarchy; I'm not a fan of the word as it is frequently misused - not so the case here, though) hurts boys and men. She shows the damage that current gender roles have on both men and women. My main reason for enoying this book is that it's one of the only ones I've read that show the damage society does to men and not just women. ( )
  Aula | Jul 24, 2012 |
From Publishers Weekly
A companion to We Real Cool: Black Men and Masculinity, hooks's 23rd book for adults is a fierce, quirky denunciation of patriarchy and a clarion call to the uncommitted to align themselves with visionary radical feminism. In 12 slim chapters, hooks examines the stages of a man's life, from babyhood through boyhood to the teenage years into manhood. She finds patriarchy plays a role in most socio-sexual ills, as boys and men seek alienating sex as a substitute for the love that often seems, because of demands on families that destroy them or keep them from forming, unavailable to men: "Sex, then, becomes for most men a way of self-solacing. It is not about connecting to someone else but rather releasing their own pain." The men who can lead us out of patriarchal chains are "men of color from poor countries, men who live in exile, men who have been victimized by imperialist male violence"-the Dalai Lama for example. While she calls Will Smith films such as Men in Black and Independence Day tools of the patriarchy, hooks saves her big guns for J.K. Rowling's Harry Potter books, scornfully exposing them as foisted on us by "rich white American men" and no more than updated version of the British schoolboy books that fueled the fantasies of Victoria's empire. A better book to buy for children, she suggests, might be her own recent Be Bop Buzz. Hooks is always readable, but her takes on mass media here have a retro ring to them.
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  CollegeReading | Sep 5, 2008 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0743456084, Paperback)

Everyone needs to love and be loved -- even men. But to know love, men must be able to look at the ways that patriarchal culture keeps them from knowing themselves, from being in touch with their feelings, from loving. In The Will to Change, bell hooks gets to the heart of the matter and shows men how to express the emotions that are a fundamental part of who they are -- whatever their age, marital status, ethnicity, or sexual orientation.

With trademark candor and fierce intelligence, hooks addresses the most common concerns of men, such as fear of intimacy and loss of their patriarchal place in society, in new and challenging ways. She believes men can find the way to spiritual unity by getting back in touch with the emotionally open part of themselves -- and lay claim to the rich and rewarding inner lives that have historically been the exclusive province of women. A brave and astonishing work, The Will to Change is designed to help men reclaim the best part of themselves.

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:32:32 -0400)

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