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Stiffed: The Betrayal of the American Man

3.83  ·  Rating Details ·  780 Ratings  ·  78 Reviews
One of the most talked-about books of last year, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Backlash now explores the collapse of traditional masculinity that has left men feeling betrayed. With Backlash in 1991, Susan Faludi broke new ground when she put her finger directly on the problem bedeviling women, and the light of recognition dawned on millions of her readers: what's m ...more
Hardcover, 672 pages
Published September 22nd 1999 by William Morrow (first published 1999)
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Mar 17, 2017 Christy rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Faludi almost outdid Backlash: The Undeclared War Against American Women here documenting the way brutal sex-role stereotypes caught up to the XY chromosomes of the species. The "betrayal" is that men thought they'd become....civilized, educated, fine manners, damn - even equal household duties!, but the culture wanted Macho Men. The military demanded it, and the way US society pitted individuals against each other rewarded the tough guy.

I did a workshop on gender stereotypes in an elementary sc
Jun 05, 2010 Mick rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Just freaking amazing. Has done more to inform and support my idea of being a man than any other single source. Amazing stories of normal men, and a pretty brutal deconstruction of how the expectation of men's behavior has changed in the last 40 years. Basically, manhood went from being centered around a functional role to a glamorous one; we went from gaining our self-respect and sense of meaning by working and being involved with something to looking good and sounding good. Pretty amazing stuf ...more
Elana Sztokman
May 14, 2012 Elana Sztokman rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Susan Faludi is brilliant. She is without a doubt one of the most skilled, insightful and nuanced investigative journalists of our time. I would say that her work often crosses over between journalism and anthropology. She has an incredible knack for getting to the heart of the story, for getting people to open up to her and share what's really going on in their lives and cultures. She is the most thorough writer I have ever read -- I mean, she puts guys like Malcolm Gladwell to shame -- and tac ...more
Neil Griffin
Feb 08, 2017 Neil Griffin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Why did so many white men vote for Donald Trump? Why did they hate Clinton with such a passion? What are all these guys so mad about?

You could do worse than reading this book from the 1990s to see a remarkably consistent thesis driven home by character studies of struggling men. It shows how baby boomers were brought up in a consumerist paradise and told that they would have what their fathers did: a life full of adventure conquering enemies, a well-paying job, and a family to protect, as long a
Stephen Cocconi
Jul 29, 2015 Stephen Cocconi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
For men and women alike. Faludi asks a powerful question:"Why haven't men stood up to a cultural stereotype and the culture it supports which is systematically destroying them economically, and by default, emasculating them in the most heinous of manipulations: encouraging them to blame themselves? Her investigation is thorough, actually compassionate and supportive of healthy masculinity, she painstakingly details and profiles the many ways that modern American corporatism has stripped men of t ...more
Dr. Marcia Chatelain
This is a beautifully written book about masculinity in America. I credit this book with sparking my interest in gender studies and American Studies. Faludi is able to weave seemingly disparate narratives into a compelling story of how industrialization, economic insecurity and little change in gender expectations have hurt both men and women.

مع أني لم ابتدأ بقراءة الكتاب، فقد قرأت مقاطع قصيرة منه في ورقة.

Hurt So Good: Fight Club, Masculine Violence, and the Crisis of Capitalism - Lynn M. Ta

وكلا المصدرين يتحدثان عن تحول معنى الرجولة في المجتمع الأمريكي(التغيير يحصل في كثير من الدول الغربية المتمدنة أيضا)، حيث تركت الساحة لاعادة تعريف وتشكيل الأدوار الجندرية التقليدية في حقبة ما بعد النسوية.

نحن العرب الذين نعيش في المجتمعات الذكورية لا تزال أذهاننا حية بالصور التقليدية لما لما تعنيه الرجولة،
Julie Mickens
Faludi makes her case via storytelling -- anecdotes woven through with history. It's well written and flows; it's not boring sociology or impersonal statistics. I read this way back in 2000 (I think), yet three of the chapter vignettes have stuck with me vividly 15+ years later:

1 - So-Cal lower-middle-class suburbia -- Lakewood, I think -- gone all wrong and rapey
2 - the pathetic yet poignant jerking around of Cleveland Browns fans and the whole Ravens drama
3 - dismay and depression caused by p
Mar 22, 2015 Loki rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Cindy Breeding
Jul 13, 2012 Cindy Breeding rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Once upon a time...


After World War II, American soldiers returned home with a legacy and a dream to pass on to their sons.

Space exploration. Academia. Scientific research. Art.

The American sons built on that legacy. They were a great generation because the DID something. They BUILT something.

Fast forward to the late 20th Century. Men face a new world defined by mergers, acquisitions, stock market bravado that moved money and credit from shell to shell. And they started losing their jobs.
Jan 24, 2008 Todd rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Jill, Karen, Summer
Recommended to Todd by: Juliet
This is an incredible book. I strongly advise reading it. Faludi, an award winner journalist and feminist, takes a compassionate and honest look into the condition of the American male.

This is a great book for any feminist or minority activist who is inclined to lay the entire burden of the countries problems on the so-called Angry White Male.

The book takes the long view on the problem and traces the roots of the problem back to the second World War and suggests that men are as shaped by socie
Jan 04, 2008 Trevor rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was nearly as good as Backlash. She interviews a wide range of men in America - from Stallone to a group of men who dress as dogs to go to football matches. There is a description of a men's group that put me off the idea of going to a men's group for life. If there was ever a book to show that the feminist revolution is about the liberation of men too - this is it.
Laura Schmidt-Dockter
I have had this book on my "to read" shelf, literally, for at least 5 years. For me, now was the perfect time to finally crack the binding. The anger in America is not coming from any particular, single arena. This book gives a glimpse of at least one portion of the population; "the American man". One can never have too much empathy. That is what I have gained from this book.
Jan 19, 2012 Ben rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Men over the age of 45
Recommended to Ben by: Brad Hicks
For those who think all feminism is just an excuse for "man-hating", this book should be required reading. It is written by a prominent feminist author and focuses on the male experience in America without the demonizing that some men seem to believe is at the core of feminism. In fact the book could be accused of taking too charitable a view of men - what society expects from them, and how other changes in society have made those expectations difficult to achieve - in light of the domestic abus ...more
Oct 27, 2014 Navarra rated it it was amazing
Accusation and public debate scrimmages have begun in Canada surrounding a famous male media personality fired as a result of allegations of sexual wrongdoing. Unfortunately, this may intersect negatively with my literary world in that the accused is the host of a radio/internet show book club that I follow every year around this time. In truth, I only ever saw the host as a minor component of the show and a rather nebulous one, but I was glad for what I assumed (by the host's name) and hoped wa ...more
Susan, a self-avowed feminist, spent 6 years researching in her words ' why men so vociferously resist women's struggles toward a fuller life. She spent an incredible amount of time and energy on her research, and it shows in the depth of detail in her writing. Sadly, I am left with a sense that her 600 page book should have been a 60 page essay.

The book slogs its way way through several overly detailed a examples of men and the life events afflicting them. While they are helpful to the books pu
T. Hodges
Mar 21, 2015 T. Hodges rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book in my early twenties and it was a valuable addition to my perspective on the world. At the time, I had been reading a great deal about masculinity, mostly finding works by male authors that were hysterically irrelevant. It was at first counter-intuitive, I picked up a book by a female and a feminist, not knowing what I'd find, but at the time, open to trying anything. This book was where the insights I was looking for had been hidden.

Sometimes, I think that no male writer may ha
Jul 04, 2008 Patrick rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I guess some people felt Faludi let men off the hook with this one (though not Bill O'Reilly, who came tantalizingly close to having a coronary event while "interviewing" the author), but to me, this represents an important attempt to understand the sociological underpinnings of some of the f-d up ways in which my gender behaves. Then again, I would say that, wouldn't I? Moohahaha!

Anyway, Faludi writes well, scored some great interviews, and offers important insights that still seem relevant alm
Oliver Bateman
Jun 13, 2016 Oliver Bateman rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
this book's a whopper, tons of reported material, 600 ponderous but potent pages. it's far less popular than backlash (which is referenced in a paul barman rap, wudjabelieveit? "gonna backlash that booty like susan faludi" is the line), but her points about consumerist, ornamental masculinity and the soul-destroying nature of late capitalism are well made. of course, simply privileging men by constructing this huge narrative for them was problematic at the time (and surely today as well), as was ...more
Aug 05, 2011 Σς rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Very well-written, very entertaining, however insulting it is intellectually.

The book is one long Bulverism, which goes something like this:

1. Men don't seem to buy feminism.
2. Feminism is obviously correct.
3. Something must be wrong with these men.

Having explained what is wrong with these men -- ta da! -- the premises are then validated.

No. Completely bass-ackwards.

And what a convenient explanation -- capitalism! A completely misunderstood version of it (the liberal version of it), but capital
Oct 18, 2008 Jessica rated it did not like it
Perhaps one star is a bit harsh on this book, but the author was unfairly biased and couldn't put aside her dark glasses to see things from a different perspective. I read this book for a senior level journalism class in college, and I remember a heated debate where I refuted her misplaced claims by quoting Scripture. I think I was the only student who actually knew any of the Bible, so it was received with a lot of dumbfounded looks. In the same breath as "women, submit to your husbands" the Bi ...more
Feb 08, 2011 Elizabeth rated it liked it
This was a disappointment because I loved Backlash. I read half the book (it's huge)and gave up when I realized that most of the samples of men Ms. Faludi interviewed were not common men at all. Ms. Faludi made some great points and then wrote essays on some men with too much detail about their lives that didn't resonate with what the book implied it was going to be about. It would have been nice to read about how this "Betrayal" affected the common man also, not only the fringes of society that ...more
May 02, 2013 John rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Well written and researched, 'Stiffed' helps to explain why and how "conventional" (i.e. pre-WWII) masculinity has all but come to be extinct. The factors are many: new technologies, the rise in feminism, hyper-consumerism, world economies, mechanization, the high number of women in the workforce, changing gender roles. For Faludi, the American man has been abandoned by many of the organizations and groups that, prior to WWII, greatly helped to bestow and shape the definition and title of "manly ...more
Jul 18, 2013 Simone rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2013-read

I don't know what to say, but this book is awesome. My professor handed it to me and told me to read it, and it's a dense 600 something pages, but it's just a wonderfully researched, searing indictment of the culture, the crisis of masculinity and the search for what it means to be a man. I don't truck with all those white men calling themselves the oppressed minority, like even a little, but this book offered a compelling counter-story to that narrative. The blame is not on women, but something
May 14, 2011 Tad rated it really liked it
I thought this was a very good book. However, I think in a lot of cases, she was way too thorough and in-depth. There were sections of this book that I felt could have been pared down substantially and the book could have easily been half this length and her central premise would have still worked. I did enjoy the section on Promise Keepers and (surprisingly) porn stars. Those were the two that I felt best got to the heart of the issue here. I could identify with some of the points she made but ...more
Jun 27, 2008 Ezra rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
i don't read a lot of sociology books. i'll pick one up on a topic that i like to think about, and usually end up feeling suffocated by the author's opinions. i think i prefer to think in an opinion-vacuum, which is very difficult to do. 'stiffed' is a great book because it doesn't rely on conclusions too much; mostly it is a series of really fascinating and telling case studies in modern american masculinity. many of them are genuinely heartbreaking, the more so because the people are so normal ...more
Oct 30, 2007 Gphatty rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It's been quite some time since I've read this book. Having loved/debated Backlash in college, I remember being really excited for Faludi's take on how men have been changed by feminism. And the stories I remember most clearly are about men who have been shunted by modern society through various means -- downsizing; outdated work skills; union busting; etc. -- and not having any new ways of validating their lives as men. Instead, they often opt for vilifying another social group -- immigrants; g ...more
Jul 06, 2008 Kathy rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Intellectual/academic types interested in gender issues
Recommended to Kathy by: Goodness, I've forgotten how I came across this one
Loooong book taking an in-depth look at what it means to be male in America. Susan explores the huge Promise Keepers movement, the decline of industry, why men identify so strongly and are so loyal to sports organization and the impact on men when these organizations sell-out and move to other cities. She looks at gender relations and examines the shifts in roles and division of responsibilities and adresses domestic violence. She does all of this objectively and with and understanding of the un ...more
Jul 02, 2007 James rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
The reason this book strikes me as important is because Faludi addresses how views of gender have changed since WWII, especially as mass media and celebrity have become more influential. She compares the modern American man to the fifties housewife. While the latter was expected to strive for "ultrafemininity," a modern man's "gym-bred display of his ultra-masculininity" is just as "ornamental." To buy her argument, you also have to buy the concept of performative gender, which I do, but your mi ...more
Aug 25, 2007 Suzanne rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Faludi is an excellent writer. I've heard her journalism criticized, but can't comment on it myself -- I felt this was well-researched. Faludi tracks American masculinity into the most unlikely places (porn filming sets, Promise Keepers rallies) and comes away with a startling conclusion: All over America, men are feeling bereft and rejected, denied the economic success they were promised, confused by women's increasing demands for power, and lashing out for more power in the face of what they p ...more
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Susan C. Faludi (born April 18, 1959) is an American humanist, journalist and author. She won a Pulitzer Prize for Explanatory Journalism in 1991, for a report on the leveraged buyout of Safeway Stores, Inc., a report that the Pulitzer Prize committee commended for depicting the "human costs of high finance".

Faludi was born to a Jewish family in Queens, New York in 1959 and grew up in Yorktown Hei
More about Susan Faludi...

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