Boys are being set up to fail: Decline in men at universities bad for both sexes

Boys are being set up to fail: Decline in men at universities bad for both sexes. An edited extract from 12 Rules for Life: An Antidote to Chaos by Dr Jordan Peterson, Allen Lane, out now, $35.

Boys are suffering, in the modern world. They are more disobedient — negatively — or more independent — positively — than girls, and they suffer for this, throughout their pre-university educational career.

They are less agreeable (agreeableness being a personality trait associated with compassion, empathy and avoidance of conflict) and less susceptible to anxiety and depression, at least after both sexes hit puberty. Boys’ interests tilt towards things; girls’ interests tilt towards people.

A classic PC versus reality issue.

These differences, strongly influenced by biological factors, are most pronounced in the Scandinavian societies where gender equality has been pushed hardest: this is the opposite of what would be expected by those who insist, ever more loudly, that gender is a social construct. It isn’t. This isn’t a debate. The data is in.

Boys “cannot” win in games with girls:

Girls will … play boys’ games, but boys are much more reluctant to play girls’ games. This is in part because it is admirable for a girl to win when competing with a boy. It is also OK for her to lose to a boy.

For a boy to beat a girl, however, it is often not OK — and just as often, it is even less OK for him to lose. Imagine that a boy and a girl, aged nine, get into a fight. Just for engaging, the boy is highly suspect. If he wins, he’s pathetic. If he loses — well, his life might as well be over. Beat up by a girl.

Girls can win by winning in their own hierarchy — by being good at what girls value, as girls. They can add to this victory by winning in the boys’ hierarchy. Boys, however, can win only by winning in the male hierarchy. They will lose status, among girls and boys, by being good at what girls value. It costs them in reputation among the boys, and in attractiveness among the girls.

Girls aren’t attracted to boys who are their friends, even though they might like them, whatever that means. They are attracted to boys who win status contests with other boys. If you’re male, however, you just can’t hammer a female as hard as you would a male. Boys can’t (won’t) play truly competitive games with girls. It isn’t clear how they can win. As the game turns into a girls’ game, therefore, the boys leave.

Universities are a girl’s game, except in STEM subjects (and the activists are trying at that too, so far rebuffed by biological differences).

Are the universities — particularly the humanities — about to become a girls’ game? Is this what we want? …

Almost 80 per cent of students majoring in the fields of healthcare, public administration, psychology and education, which comprise one-quarter of all degrees, are female. The disparity is still rapidly increasing. At this rate, there will be very few men in most university disciplines in 15 years. …

Hypergamy: why girls lose the bigger game in today’s world.

The women at female-dominated institutes of higher education are finding it increasingly difficult to arrange a dating relationship of even moderate duration. In consequence, they must settle, if inclined, for a hook-up or sequential hook-ups. …

Is working 80 hours a week at a high-end law firm truly worth the sacrifices required for that kind of success? And if it is worth it, why is it worth it? A minority of people (mostly men, who score low in the trait of agreeableness, again) are hyper-competitive, and want to win at any cost. A minority will find the work intrinsically fascinating. But most aren’t, and most won’t, and money doesn’t seem to improve people’s lives, once they have enough to avoid the bill collectors. …

If you are earning $C650 an hour in Toronto as a top lawyer, and your client in Japan phones you at 4am on a Sunday, you ­answer. Now. You answer now even if you have just gone back to sleep after feeding the baby. You answer because some hyper-ambitious legal associate in New York would be happy to ­answer if you don’t — and that’s why the market defines the work.

The increasingly short supply of university-educated men poses a problem of increasing severity for women who want to marry, as well as date. First, women have a strong proclivity to marry across or up the economic dominance ­hierarchy. They prefer a partner of equal or greater status. This holds true cross-culturally. …

Because of this, and because of the decline in high-paying manufacturing jobs for men (one of six men of employable age is currently without work in the US), marriage is now something increasingly reserved for the rich. I can’t help finding that amusing in a blackly ironic manner.

The oppressive patriarchal institution of marriage has now become a luxury. Why would the rich tyrannise themselves? Why do women want an employed partner, and preferably one of higher status? In no small part it’s because women become more vulnerable when they have children. They need someone competent to support mother and child when that becomes necessary. It’s a perfectly rational compensatory act, ­although it may also have a biological basis. …

Ha ha  ha, so out of date. Nowadays, marriage is about “equality.”

Universities increasingly hate men:

The strong turn towards political correctness in universities has exacerbated the problem. The voices shouting against oppression have become louder, it seems, in precise proportion to how equal — even now increasingly skewed against men — the schools have become.

There are whole disciplines in universities forthrightly hostile ­towards men. These are the areas of study dominated by the postmodern/neo-Marxist claim that Western culture, in particular, is an oppressive structure created by white men to dominate and exclude women (and other select groups); successful only because of that domination and exclusion.

hat-tip Stephen Neil