Two years ago, a friend of mine had generously lent me his copy of Females by Andrea Long Chu, a short book described by Vogue US as ‘juicily transgressive‘. It’s about a man telling what it’s like to be a woman.
I had written this point-by-point reaction to Andrea Long Chu’s work on the 25th of December 2020, because Christmas is the best time of the year to deal with men who say they are women. I thought I would never publish it, as it is not a clear read, only share it with the friend but after reading the great Genevieve Gluck’s piece on ‘Sissy Porn at Princeton University’ I felt like I just had to publish it.
A competition to align the maximum amount of words one after the other.
Desecrating Valerie Solanas’s existence once again
p.4 ‘impossibly serious, seriously impossible’: compensating lack of content with distracting mirror effects.
p. 5 ‘Solanas … often homeless, doing sex work’: Men sexually abusing women without a shelter are not offering them work, they are raping women in a vulnerable position.
p.6 Solanas writes ‘It doesn’t follow that because the male, like the disease, has always existed among us that he should continue to exist’ clearly the words of a genius.
No Mr Long Chu, saying that males are incomplete females does not mean that they are females to begin with. Quite the opposite, it means that men never reached that stage of development and never will as their behaviour and lack of empathy clearly show. But yes, men do want to be women and you sir are the proof of that. So is the myth of male gods who create life when we know only women can give birth.
p. 7 Valerie Solanas accuses men of the very things they have accused us of because she has understood the concept of projection. Valerie Solanas does not ‘gender swap’ the sexes (you’ve got to decide by the way, is it gender or sex?) when she shows that whatever men accuse us of is only a reflection of who they are. (In a way she has integrated Woolf’s distorting mirror).
You can’t have ‘misogyny against men’. The term is misandry if you want. Otherwise it’s like saying xenophobia against autochthones.
No, Solanas does not hate women more than men, with the ‘Daddy’s Girl’ she is pinpointing what men are capable of reducing us to. She does have a grudge against men pretending to be women like you though, Mr Long Chu.
p. 8 ‘the mission of SCUM … is not to simply kill men and smash the government but ultimately to defeminize the human race altogether’
‘If you’re confused good. So was Valerie, I think’. A man deforms a woman’s words and calls her confused.
Valerie Solanas was never ever a ‘sex worker’. No woman is a ‘sex worker’. You can’t be something that makes no sense.
Valerie had the most tremendous sense of humour.
p. 9 Man thinks that a ‘feminist’ label is necessary to consider any literary piece as such and Valerie not having done that, he is not sure about the legacy of her marvellous work.
p. 10 ‘For the record, I’m not sure if what you’re reading is a feminist text, either. I’m not sure if I want it to be.’ Let me reassure you it is not, sir.
p. 11 Man can’t stand women so instead of acknowledging our existence he prefers defining womanhood as a universal condition. In our day and age, it would have been too obvious to reduce women to men as it was previously done (ie. Men for humans).
‘I’ll define as female any psychic operation in which the self is sacrificed to make room for the desires of another’. Man provides own definition of female which is as misogynist as it gets. Being female is being suppressed. Femaleness is nothing once again.
‘femaleness is always bad for you’
p. 12 a picture of this page must be taken. No words.
Defining sex is being reactionary.
Actually, no there are words. Man uses fancy complicated ones to hide his own vacuity. Man is not original. Man repeats much of the history of literature and philosophy.
Please read below if you can:
‘Femaleness is not an anatomical or genetic characteristic of an organism, but rather a universal existential condition, the one and only structure of human consciousness. To be is to be female: the two are identical.
It follows, then, that while all women are females, not all females are women. In fact, the empirical existence, past and present, of genders other than man and woman means that the majority of females are not women. This is ironic but not a contradiction. Everyone is female, but how one copes with being female – the specific defence mechanisms that one consciously or unconsciously develops as a reaction formation against’ one’s femaleness, within the terms of what is historically and socioculturally available – this is what we ordinarily call gender.’
p. 13 Man calls himself a woman. Man is delusional.
Politics as realisation of being female but not wanting to be.
Essentialising oppression. Man observes females are abused (all females, human and non) so says abuse defines females. He locks the possibility of an escape, no liberation on the horizon.
p. 14 Man confuses woman’s refusal of oppression based on sex with refusal of the female sex itself, just because he himself refused his own male sex.
‘To be for women, imagined as full human beings, is always to be against females. In this sense, feminism opposes misogyny precisely inasmuch it also expresses it.
Or maybe I’m just projecting.’
p. 15 Man boasts about fancy university life.
p. 16 Man masturbates too much. Must be difficult with that inverted penis now.
(‘For weeks my hands were covered in DIY paste making me look like a compulsive masturbator, which I was.’)
P. 18 Man talks about himself.
p. 20 Man dares comparing himself to Valerie Solanas.
p. 21 ‘Valerie can sound like a dominatrix in SCUM’. Man reads an essential piece in feminist theory and can only think about his own fantasies about domination and power.
‘While I was finishing this book, a friend alerted me to the existence of a pornographic video in which a female teacher uses a quotation from the SCUM Manifesto to seduce two female students, turning them into lesbians. This made instant, perfect sense. It’s what Valerie did to me.’
Man thinks he is a lesbian.
p.22 Man uses fellow man (Freud) as argument of authority. God/Freud says so, it must be true.
p. 25 Man recognises womb envy (or ‘pussy envy’) but never applies to his own case.
p. 27 Man wants breasts.
p. 28 Gigi Gorgeous is a misogynistic man living the misogynistic fantasy of a ‘female’ body.
p. 29 Man calls another man gorgeous for adopting stereotypes about women made by men.
Man is jealous of another man for fitting so perfectly the image of the ‘fuckable’ woman.
p. 30 ‘Gender transition, no matter the direction is always a process of becoming a canvas for someone else’s fantasy.’ Yes.
‘She laughs at what is funny, she cries at what is sad, and she is miraculously free of serious opinions.’ Transsexualism perpetuating stereotypes about women at its best.
p. 32 ‘Raymond is obviously a bigot’. Man openly expresses his view of women who dare speaking up against male violence.
Valerie would definitely side with Janice Raymond’s argument but man tries to pretend she would not just because he is attracted to her wonderful brain and so he tries to fit her into his idea of her. His justification for her not being a ‘TERF’ is: she had ‘trans’ friends. Having female friends never stopped men from being misogynists.
p. 33 Man pretends Valerie did not understand transsexualism.
‘At times, Valerie spoke admiringly of Candy [Andy Warhol’s muse who liked to parade as a simulacrum of a woman], describing her as a “perfect victim of male suppression” (…); at others paranoia on the rise, Valerie was known to accuse Candy of making fun of women for gay men’s entertainment’.
When Valerie rightly accuses drag queens of being the sexual equivalent of the black face (as Sheila Jeffreys explains) she is paranoid.
p. 34 Man fit Valerie Solanas’s words into his viewpoint.
This man makes no sense, is it worth continuing the comments?
p. 36 Man reveals great knowledge of feminist literature only for the purposes of deforming and criticising it.
p. 37 ‘to be female is to be an object’. No, it is to be made an object. It does not mean we are so from inception.
p. 38 Man does not know that MacKinnon believes that men like him can be women.
‘Your gender identity would simply exist, in mute abstraction, and no one, least of all yourself, would care.’
Nobody cares. But you make us care because you want us to.
You were published thanks to it.
p. 43 Valerie Solanas writes ‘RUSSELL. You don’t know what a female is, you desexed monstrosity’. Once again Valerie is right.
p. 45 Man still does not make sense and does not appear to try to do so.
‘Sex was produced, in other words, precisely at the juncture where gender was denied. In this sense, a female has always been less than a person.’
Woman who reads this is really trying hard to make some sense out of this. As Mr Long Chu outlined in his previous chapter, it is often said that if women do not understand men, the fault is ours.
p. 47 ‘Does he even know what he’s saying?’
May I return the question to Mr Long Chu?
p. 48 Man thinks that having marks on his jaws from biting his arm too strong in college is ‘essentialist’.
p. 51 Man talks of his addiction to pornography.
Man finally speaks a lot of sense: ‘a sad, pretentious boy, furious about rape, hopelessly addicted to pornography’
‘Being a man was my punishment for being a man. Anything else was greed.’
Including the desire to be a woman.
p. 55 Man thinks that Valerie Solanas would have approved of hormone replacement therapy. The same Valerie Solanas that starts her manifesto writing about the incompleteness of male chromosomes.
p. 58 Man still deforms woman’s words.
p. 61 Mr Long Chu quotes Chuck Palahniuk explaining that the alt-right will fade away like other extremes such as SCUM. Representatives of male culture are confident that Valerie Solanas’s legacy will not last. The boys are wrong (Andrea Dworkin).
p. 63 Interesting report about the fact that even some far-right male extremists have understood the damage pornography is doing to them.
Man claims pornography is expression of femaleness.
p. 65 Man is unsurprisingly banal. Man claims women who fight the distribution of filmed raped show ‘quasi-religious moralism’. Man will probably invoke some moral values when he denounces women who call him man instead of woman just because they go against his sacrosanct male will of imposing his worldview on women.
p. 70 Man exposes his addiction to ‘sissy porn’ which incites men to adopt the codes of femininity to achieve sexual satisfaction. Man applies what Janice Raymond had merely described in The Transsexual Empire. Once again women don’t need much to prove our points: men are boringly predictable and repetitive. What we say they do, they do. Then they blame us for saying it.
p. 72. Man calls another man ‘loathsome’ for staying grounded in reality, saying that men are not women.
p. 73 Man once again fails to understand important feminist writer (this time Sheila Jeffreys).
p. 74 Man hopes we are finally buying into his delusion that everyone is female. Man thinks that through repetition he will achieve compliance. (Maybe he’s right).
‘To be female is, in every case, to become what someone else wants. At bottom, everyone is a sissy.’
Man is hailed for writing this. Nothing has changed. Aint’ nothing changed (Loyle Carner).
p. 75 Man talks about the ‘intellectual property’ of rape on tape.
p. 76 Man reiterates male equation of degradation with femaleness.
Man thinks anus is ‘universal vagina’. (I giggled).
‘At the center of sissy porn lies the asshole, a kind of universal vagina through which femaleness can always be accessed.’
p. 77 ‘Getting fucked makes you female because fucked is what a female is.’
Man puts breasts under a list of ‘fetish objects’ (italics my own).
p. 78 Man associates feminine possessive adjective ‘her’ with the male organ ‘penis’.
p. 79 ‘femaleness to its barest essentials—an open mouth, an expectant asshole, blank, blank eyes.’
‘Sissy porn did make me trans.’
p. 84 ‘the same contingent of feminists who seek to unmask trans women as male pretenders may almost always be relied upon to cast sex workers as the feminized victims of sex traffickers–there is too much female among each group and not enough woman. If sex workers were really women, they would rescue themselves from the sexual objectification that makes them women; if trans women were women, they would have the good sense not to be.’
I think I will stop here.
p. 88 Man talks about buying female organs.
‘I also had recently purchased a new vagina.’
No I did not stop. I cannot stop till they keep going. Please don’t tell me to stop (Madonna).
p. 94 Man admits his interest in a female writer is inevitably tied with his desire to sexually access her.