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Lily Rothman's A Cultural History Of Mansplaining

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Have you ever been the “victim” of mansplaining? If you think hard enough, you’ll probably recall at least one instance in your life when someone explained something to you that you knew more about than them. Whether it had to do with your health, age, academics, sports, work, or social issues that specifically applied to you, someone attempted to explain a topic that you likely already understood better than them. And if you’re a female, you can probably dredge up a few bemusing memories of men doing this to you. The relatively new term for this action is “mansplaining,” which means, per Lily Rothman’s “A Cultural History of Mansplaining,” “explaining without regard to the fact the explainee knows more than the explainer” (Rothman 54). Although the article lends to the voice of the ebbing feminist movement, Rothman’s writing has a number of shortcomings. She fails to adequately explain the history of mansplaining and presents a limited outlook on what mansplaining might really mean and its societal impact. First, Rothman deserves acknowledgement for her work. If anyone ever has mansplained to you, the situation likely felt and sounded somewhat ridiculous to you, right? Imagine that multiple individuals had been doing that to you your whole life, specifically because of your sex. Hell, asinine does this sound? Rothman certainly recognizes this and repeatedly appeals to her readers’ sense of logic and emotion to persuade us that mansplaining as an idea and in practice is
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