Feminists Like Men More Than Non-Feminists Do

Feminism promotes the notion that Women and men are of equal worth and dignity.

Feminism: women and men are of equal worth and dignity.

Feminists hate men?

Some people think so.

But a University of Houston study found that feminists like men more than non-feminists do.

That was true regardless of gender. Feminist men and women felt less hostility toward men than non-feminists of either sex did.

Maybe it’s not so surprising.

After all, feminists also support people of color, the poor and the LGBTQ community. Illustrating a general pro-humanity outlook.

And antifeminists tend to be hostile toward a lot of folks: women, people of color, LGBTQ, the poor, people of different religions, people who aren’t Americans… Illustrating a general anti-humanity view.

So what is feminism?

Feminist Ryan Gosling

Feminist Ryan Gosling

Feminists promote this belief:

Women and men are of equal worth and dignity, and should have equal opportunity.

So why do some say that feminists hate men?

Confusing a dislike of patriarchy for a dislike of men.

Some think that “patriarchy” and “men” are the same thing.

They are not.

Patriarchy supports greater privilege and opportunity for men.

But most men disagree with that notion. When asked if they believed that:

Men and women should be social, political, and economic equals. 82% agreed. And men were as likely to agree as women.

Ashley Judd: This is what a feminist looks like.

Ashley Judd: This is what a feminist looks like.

Plus, 16% of men even call themselves feminists.

Antifeminists try to scare people away

Meanwhile, people who fear losing privilege, or who simply fear a change in the status quo, try to scare everyone away by calling feminists “Men-hating lesbians who want to dominate men.”

So clearly, they are homophobic, too. Sure, plenty of lesbians are feminist! But we come in a variety of sexual orientations.

The next time you hear that feminists hate men

Just remember that we actually like them more than antifeminists do.

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About BroadBlogs

I have a Ph.D. from UCLA in sociology (emphasis: gender, social psych). I currently teach sociology and women's studies at Foothill College in Los Altos Hills, CA. I have also lectured at San Jose State. And I have blogged for Feminispire, Ms. Magazine, The Good Men Project and Daily Kos. Also been picked up by The Alternet.

Posted on May 22, 2015, in feminism, men, psychology, sexism, women and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 41 Comments.

  1. This is really well said. I think people who refuse to believe that feminism supports better quality of life for people of all genders don’t see the ways in which the patriarchy hurts men. In order to maintain their privileged status, men are expected to continuously prove their masculinity through sometimes violent or reckless behaviors and not to have any feminine traits. The patriarchy dehumanizes men by forcing them to suppress their emotions and rendering them reluctant to seek help in times of need. Men are also punished for body language, manners of dress and speech, careers, interests, and hobbies that are associated with women. Since the patriarchy limits and restricts people of all genders, II believe that feminism is good for everyone, including men.

    • The irony is that sometimes antifeminists write in about how horrible feminism is — and then I point out how patriarchy is the real cause of the problem they are complaining about.

      And then they stop writing in 😦

  2. I’m just showing how some feminists can feel everything is sexist and like men feel they have to walk on egg shells or can’t say something without it being sexist. I think men and women are equal as worth, but naturally I think men and women can have different skill sets, none better than the other but different. Generally speaking, women are known to be better multi taskers, overall men are better atheltes as far as the speed, strength, quickness sports, which basketball, running, baseball, football sports like that are. You see woman do amazing things that requie nimble and balance or long distances runs as women have better endurance. So my point, a feminist like her could take a guy saying men generally are better athletes as sexist, when it’s just a stating a fact and no intent of making it like women are less but just noticing different abilities in the general sense between men and women.

    I’ve noticed usually it’s a guy thing to have his arms around a woman’s shoulder, its seems more a masculine thing, plus guys are usually tallent and bigger so it makes sense. I think women usually have their arms around his lower back..waist if he has his arms around her shoulder. And like this isn’t necessarily an intimate thing either. Just can be affection too. I remember ladies, who I have no attraction to and older, but I like them alot and they are nice and I joke around and like a friendship thing. I’d something just for a minute put my arm around their shoulder in a friendly embrace. When that happens and everything little thing, it makes some feminists seems like they have a huge chip on their shoulder, which is never good. EVen if life has seemed unfair or tough, I’ve learned, because I’ve had frustrations that you don’t want to go through life with a chip on your shoulder. Because it will make you a very bitter, unkind, and a person that will repel people. It’s good to be a nice, positive friendly person, despite the odds, because it not only helps you get through things, but you give a good vibe and energy that attracts people and allows you to have relationships with good people and friends. People pick up on the energy from others and having a bad vibe, negative energy from having chip on your should is not good.

  3. Do they? Some do, but this is why I think some are skeptical of “feminists” as women who are combative and offended by everything and sees everything as sexist or easily so, when something isn’t or shouldn’t be. Here’s an example that I saw on yahoo from feminist Helen Mirren.


    “It annoys me when I see men with an arm slung round their girlfriend’s shoulders. It’s like ownership. ”

    Give me a damn break. She’s had flack for this it seems and for good reason. It’s one thing to make a comment about double standard of women being sluts and not men and such, but when a feminist nit picks or finds something where it feels like anything a man does is to demean a woman, then it becomes obxious. This isn’t to say there aren’t men who do that to show control and ownership of his girl, but what a generalized statement, she just put that across the board when many or probably most guys like me, do that because of affection. Human beings are complex and can do many things or the same things for different reasons. Sure if a girl doesn’t like a man having his arm around her shoulder, then yeah that’s not good. But most guys or for me, that only comes when with a gf and shes likes you and obviously shows she likes your affection and is fine with you having your arm around her shoulder.

    I’m an affectionate person, which I think is a good thing. I mean men are often deemed as less emotional, loving, etc. I don’t do it much, and I will hold hands at times if she wants, but when feeling particularly affectionate, Iike to have my arm arm around the gf I’m with. I mean I like to hug, but you can’t walk and hug, the arm around the shoulder is closer than holding hands, as you body is closer to hers and you can walk while doing that unlike a hug. And for me and other men, we’re bigger and taller generally and we love that petitness of women, and I don’t know there’s just something about your arm around her smaller frame, it’s just affection and many girls like it too. Just like guys like the “smallness” of women, which embraces like that does. Women seem to like feeling small and the big strong embrace from their man and being in that embrace of his bigger body. Example, many women like when their boyfriend hugs them from behind. You know what I’m talking about

    • Well, 1) it’s on average 2) you must make a distinction between man and a particular behavior and 3) I don’t think most feminists would be bothered by this. After all women may swing their arms around their lovers’ shoulders, too.

  4. Miranda Hayes

    I have known many men, my father included, who are feminists and who believe in many of the same things I do. I think its really sad when guys or even other girls try to say that feminists hate and are against men because they do not! We love equality beyond both sexes and that is why I loved reading this article, because I can relate in many ways. I really respected and loved reading in this article about how there is a difference between men and patriarchy and how you we should not go after men as a whole. Many men actually have really gentle and sensitive souls and they just put on a show because society makes them feel like they need to. Feminists are not against men at all and its all about equality between everybody!

  5. I wonder if it is fear instead of hate. I am a female feminist who certainly does not hate men, but I admit that I am more wary around men than I am around women. After all what is more threatening than a group of drunk men? My feeling of being under threat is supported by the reality of the society that I live within – men are valued more than women. Anyhow, I just can’t seem to wrap my head around antifeminists or as I’ve heard them called recently ‘meninists’. From my understanding they have a heavy online component, not surprising as people seem more willing to be hateful when hiding behind a screen. So it seems that they are more in the lines of a hate group than anything else because all I see them doing is attacking women, the LGBTQ community etc. instead of actually trying to support men that are in need of help. To me part of being a feminist means that I try to critically engage with the constructs that control us, patriarchy being one of them. This would mean that I acknowledge the damage that patriarchy enacts on all genders. I believe that working towards dismantling patriarchy aids men. Really it seems that meninists hate feminists (obviously not understanding what it means to be a feminist) just as much as they hate men who do not conform to strict gender ideals. Anti-feminists are simply destructive, while feminists are trying to be constructive.

  6. I do agree that women and men should be equal. But Society is changing everything in a blink of an eye. When a person hears someone say, “Feminist hate men” they will spread those same words to their friends/family and everyone will start to say those same words “Feminist hate men.” People who make comments like this don’t know what a feminist person believes in. Being feminist doesn’t mean they hate men, a feminist believes that they should be treated equally as men. Same pay, jobs, education etc.

  7. The points from this article are interesting, and I believe that they are true. I never think that being a feminist and hating man is the same thing. The reason is that feminists target on prompt women’s rights in many different aspects. Moreover, just as you mentioned, most feminists not only concern about women’s rights but also care about other issues that could have influences on women like homosexual problems or the poor people in our society. As a result, from my perspective, it’s hard for me to find a reason that feminists should hate the men. With the feminist’s development, people start to cope with feminists issues well, which could be explained that many men have turned to be feminists. Therefore, in my opinion, feminists just care more about women’s rights and development, which does not mean that it’s a conflict with men so that feminists have to hate men. There is no reason that feminists need to hate men.

  8. Christopher vaquerano

    You have a few pearls of wisdom here and I want to focus on the notion that feminism promotes equality for both genders. Currently society favors the male gender drastically and subliminaly. Both male and female people experience effects from this way of thinking and in most cases these effects can be perceived as mostly negative. I feel like if everyone became a little more conscious of their actions and the activities they partake in, then people wouldn’t have to bother with the label of feminist but unfortunately the female gender has been forced into a defensive corner. If it is true that every action has a reaction then it is also true that if we look at the issue of gender ranking we can see why feminists had to create and become feminists. I believe women can hate men but I do not believe that a woman has to be a feminist to hate men or that if she does hate men she must in turn be a feminist. Society has given women many reasons to hate men and men has unwittingly fallen for many of the traps set out by lobbiests and sales people but the tactic of destabilizing the notion of feminism was not enacted by feminists but by those seeking to destroy the movement. Again, if a feminist gates men and voices her opinion about them she is reflecting her own perception of how she enter prates the world bit what she is not doing is reflect the true meaning of what feminism is

  9. Feminist or not , you cannot deny that in the Western world especially , a large percentage of women utterly hate & detest men , yes there are dickhead men that do harm women & I can’t stand them ,they give us ALL a bad name. I’m married , but if I was single I would NEVER date in this day & age, & remain single forever , women seem to radiate coldness & hostility…but in fairness I mostly blame ” media” propaganda that portrays men as retarded , sex crazed , rapist beasts of the field.

    • Well, you and I have had a very different experience. I don’t know any women who hate and detest men. Something I found interesting when I first started teaching women’s studies was that the women students were very protective of the men. They were very concerned to make sure they felt comfortable in a feminist classroom. And I really appreciated that about them.

  10. Taylor Nyulassy

    With all the misunderstanding about feminism and the women’s movement, I think this is a very important point to bring up. Many people believe that feminism is about putting women on a higher pedestal than men or that feminists are just a bunch of man-haters. Both of these myths are very untrue, as you have identified in the passage. I think both of these misconceptions are easily proved wrong just by looking at the very principals of feminism. Feminism says “Women and men are of equal worth and dignity, and should have equal opportunity.” EQUAL is the keyword here. There is nothing in feminism that has anything to do with discrimination, exclusion or hate towards another group. It is simply about equality, which is innately inclusionary. So, feminists do not feel the need to hate men, simply because there is no room for it. If feminism is going to get anywhere, it is not going to be by making men the enemy. Being an inclusionary feminist that accepts all people of gender, ethnicity and culture is probably the most powerful feminist their can be.

  11. I really, really loved reading this post. It’s direct, eloquent, and in my opinion, a gem. My first reaction was, “how can people actually believe the absurd critiques of feminism?” but as I read through the first few comments that were left, it was more clear. What people don’t understand, they fear. Fear generates threat which then leads to assumptions that hinder people from reaching conclusions of logic and reason. It makes sense that part of the origin of the “man-hating” belief stems from errors early feminists had made. Other errors have been made throughout the development of feminism. For example, women of color were left out of the movement’s narrative. The key here is that these unproductive notions were adjusted to shift feminism into what it actually is, a defender of equality, justice, and understanding. I absolutely agree that feminist beliefs illustrate a pro-humanity outlook. Simply, feminism represents what is moral and what is just.

    I think it is reasonable to draw conclusions about the intellect, morality, motives, and internal conflicts of those who express clear convictions in opposition of social justice and equality. Below is evidence for my claim.


    In brief, a Michigan pastor who preached a great deal of hate-speech, including one fallacious argument, in which he concluded that transgendered people are sickos that prey upon children, was unveiled to be a frequent user of Grinder.

    This article insightful, amusing, and worth reading.


  12. Totally agree. Since becoming a feminist I’ve come to really appreciate men as individuals rather than my idea of what men should be like. Feminism has nothing to do with hating men.

  13. Well, I have never heard about feminism back home, I don’t even know the Arabic term for it. However, we do have women’s rights and support groups that are involved in politics as well, and the reason why I know that, is because the media mimic them in our TV shows and show them to literally hate men, stereotypical as mentioned. I also do agree that sometimes the most judgmental are the extreme religious who have no sympathy what so ever. I guess what feminists are calling for is a simple common sense 🙂

  14. I have encountered many friends who have asked me why I support feminism and that it’s selfish because it only benefits women. A few have even said that there is no point because in my country things are pretty equal for men and women. I have to explain to them that feminism actually helps everyone as it breaks down the stereotypes placed on men by society as well. I am not surprised that feminists are less hateful towards men because feminism promotes the idea that men and women are capable of the same things, including domestic violence or rape. However, many people have the misconception that feminists hate men because of the few who call themselves feminists that have warped what feminism is truly about to suit their own needs. I feel that these people give feminism a bad name and as a result many people turn away when they hear the word feminist. Antifeminists as well try to spread negativity about feminism and many people who do not know much about it might end up believing it. These people are the ones giving feminism a bad name, making it seem selfish and man-hating when the basic idea is for women to be treated like an equal human being as men.

    • I think the biggest problem is anti-feminists who paint us differently from how we are.

      And there are people promoting all sorts of causes, including civil rights. Why is it only declared selfish when women promote equal rights… And not selfish when anti-feminists promote male privilege?

      Thanks for your thoughts. 😄

  15. Very interesting…. At first sight it could sound paradoxical… But as you have stated and multiple studies have proved Feminists, in fact, may like men…
    The principle “Women and men are of equal worth and dignity, and should have equal opportunity” is a sort of general, broad scoped, humanistic motto… Hence, assuming that men and women are human beings … And Human rights might be above women rights …the last ones are included in the first ones
    Once again, the way we see things has to be with a prejudice… Or should I say “pride and prejudice”… And by that I mean that at times, even women relate feminists to lesbians… Weird, I know!…Another legacy of the patriarchal paradigm, I guess…
    Great post, dear Georgia… Best wishes to you! Aquileana ⭐

  16. Thanks for that, Georgia. So many misconceptions in society. Seems many (most?) misconceptions are the product of shallow men (especially social conservatives) when it comes to strong women–and age. I just came across this article by Rebecca Shaw that is right down your alley.


    I love this comment from the author: Isn’t it time we saw more female love interests with lines around their eyes from all the extra years of laughing?

    • That’s great!

      I noticed that my students – Both male and female – Have gotten more feminist over the years. As you grow up with more of it it seems less scary.

  17. Only 82% of people agreed that women and men should be economic, social and political equals?

  18. Well, there are feminists out there who seems to support that notion.

    • I don’t know whether this is true. I didn’t keep the link you left because feminists believe in the equality of women and men and this person doesn’t believe that. sounds like some man who’s masquerading as a feminist to make people dislike them.

      • No they are women alright. They are called radical feminists. You can Google it. They are giving feminists a.bad name

      • Anyone can call themselves a feminist, whether they are or not. But a feminist – including radical feminists – believe that men and women are of equal worth and dignity and should have equal opportunities. Whoever owns this blog doesn’t believe that.

      • Have you heard of famous feminists like Andrea Dworkin and T-Grace Atkinson say about men?
        There is your answer why some people believe that feminists hate men.

      • I have heard of them. They are early feminists. Some early feminists were man-hating. But that was totally counterproductive. All it did was alienate both men and women from the movement. I’ve written about this before. Some quotes:

        A few early feminists made the error of feeling powerful over the real thing when they spewed man-hating rhetoric. In the moment they likely felt pretty tough. But the strategy did not create real muscle and feminists at large gave it up. For the effect was to repel potential female and male allies, alike.

        From “BEING Powerful? Or just FEELING Powerful?”

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