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Angry White Men: American Masculinity at the End of an Era

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  1,049 ratings  ·  138 reviews
"[W]e can't come off as a bunch of angry white men.”
Robert Bennett, chairman of the Ohio Republican Party

One of the enduring legacies of the 2012 Presidential campaign was the demise of the white American male voter as a dominant force in the political landscape. On election night, after Obama was announced the winner, a distressed Bill O’Reilly lamented that he didn’t liv
Hardcover, 336 pages
Published November 5th 2013 by Nation Books (first published 2013)
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Start your review of Angry White Men: American Masculinity at the End of an Era
White men are angry. Some of them are angry at the government, some at minorities, some at their ex-wives or feminists or even just women in general. Some are angry at all of the above.

This won’t be news to feminist bloggers and activists dealing with ad hominem attacks or victim-blaming postering campaigns from men’s rights activists (MRAs). It won’t shock the people who read or saw the news story yesterday about Jim Andre, the Alberta School Trustee who is refusing to resign after tweeting and
Jul 31, 2013 rated it liked it
It's an important book, but at times I did feel like I was being pressured to empathize instead of simply understand. "Aggrieved entitlement" does not justify the harm that is done, and while I'm sure that's not what Kimmel was trying to say, I sometimes felt like I was being told, "Hey don't hold it against them, they're inevitable."

Kimmel seems to think very highly of his readers, because he often doesn't explain why a certain point of view is problematic (e.g., men saying "ladies night" is s
Jan 25, 2014 rated it it was ok
this was not as good as it should have been. it read like a sloppy rush job. many editorial oversights ("depravation" instead of "deprivation" more than once), many inconsistencies on behalf of the author--why point out the difference between correlation and causation when you want to argue spurious correlations, but leave the topic undiscussed when you like the implication? why the seemingly haphazard use of footnotes? so many questionable statements, too. just one example (p. 238): "perhaps as ...more
May 舞
Aug 07, 2020 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
A comprehensive and detailed analysis of the mindset, arguments, and attitudes of the racist, sexist, homophobic, and anti-semetic alt-right, including the so-called men's rights activists. In my opinion Michael Kimmel was more than fair to these groups, explaining the sources of the anguish and how it is misdirected at the wrong targets through active manipulation. I would sympathize with them myself, if not for their hateful speech and violent conduct. In any case, it is incredibly useful to u ...more
Nov 28, 2013 rated it liked it
Shelves: politics
This book starts strong and ends weak. In a nutshell, Kimmel's thesis is that some of the more extreme right-wing politics comprised of white men stem from their sense of entitlement. They feel not just downtrodden, but ripped off. The direction of the anger is at minorities, feminists, sometimes Jews, nd gays. Kimmel points out that this rage is misdirected at these groups when it should properly be aimed at the economic system that has caused skyrocketing inequality since the late 70s.

That's t
Aug 21, 2017 rated it did not like it
This was certainly a challenging read, in that I couldn't stand all of the contradictory logic, the racism, the sexism, the hateful scapegoating, and the overall absurdity of angry white men presented in this book. I could only read a little at a time before I hit my threshold for BS. There are so many different kinds of angry white men, and it was nauseating to read about them. Honestly. The author has compassion (too much, if you ask me) for the very few angry white men who have something appr ...more
Nov 20, 2019 rated it really liked it
I cannot believe this book was written before the election! It is a really good review of all the strains of anger and resentment that led to Trump being the redeemer of Angry White Men. It's a really good book and it made me really angry. ...more
Feb 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
Shelves: gender-studies
I thought I already knew everything there is to know about masculine entitlement, but I was clearly wrong. Kimmel delves into the minds of men who feel like they are the new oppressed minority and provides a lot of insight about why they think and feel that way. Coming from a feminist perspective, I hadn't really gotten a good look at this anywhere else because feminist scholarship (reasonably) does not focus much on the feelings of entitled white men.

While Kimmel discusses race at various point
When I started reading this I sort of knew what was coming (because I don't live on mars) but I really wanted to see what a bona fide professor of sociology has to say about the phenomenon that is Angry White Men.

What is depressing about the Angry White Men is that they just seem incapable of understanding any other point of view. (and of course, I do have another point of view, because I'm not one of them). The good news is that sociologists (and others) like Kimmel are trying to understand, an
May 19, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
The book is too long and too poorly edited, and Kimmel is too impressed with himself. Definitely not as woke as he wants to be about gender and sexuality. Like your boomer dad trying to tell you how progressive his neighborhood association meetings are.
Bob Duke
Mar 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A worrying analysis of raging white males in the age of Trump. The world has changed depriving these men of their concept of masculinity. The seek to return to an idealized past. Trump will fail them as the world has changed and I expect them to be more violent. The people who need to read this are those white males in America who feel cheated of their birthright. However these are the people who will be the least likely to read this book. They live in the old American economy which voted for Tr ...more
Rob Melich
Jun 06, 2017 rated it it was ok
Interesting, but not very useful in understanding how to we make things better in our country. I get that there are a lot of men who don't respect women, don't like their lives, feel totally victimized, and in turn do dangerous and hurtful things to friends, family, community, and themselves.
The one point Kimmel made about entitlement deserves more study. Where does it come from? "Hillbilly Elegy" suggests it was the New Deal but that's a cop out and implies way too much connection. I would arg
Jun 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
I wish all the American angry white men (and the women that love/enable them) would read this book and learn something. They won't though, and the rest of us will continue to suffer for it. ...more
Matthew Lloyd
Three years after its original publication, Angry White Men seems at first glance to be half more relevant than ever, half completely outdated. The promised End of an Era of the subtitle seems not to have come to pass; arguably, we are in an era of Angry White Male ascendancy. But perhaps not. Perhaps this moment is the last, white-hot burst of anger before the futility of that anger dawns on those who express it; or before those against whom it is mistakenly directed become powerful enough to r ...more
Dec 30, 2013 rated it really liked it
This is an important book. As Kimmel writes, the phenomenon of angry white men is so visible and widespread "that were it happening with any other group (say, black men or Asian women), it would be discussed incessantly." Kimmel covers topics such as school rampage shootings, men's and fathers' rights groups, men who commit violence against women, workplace violence, and white supremacist groups. He draws out the sense of aggrieved entitlement that each of these men feel. The world is changing a ...more
Dec 22, 2016 rated it really liked it
A look at a group of people who are trying to hold onto "their America" - where white men were supreme and did not have to share. Written in 2013, it is relevant in 2016. Ignored for so long, they believed that Donald Trump listened to them. ...more
Julia Marie
Nov 22, 2017 rated it it was ok
Really qualitative, anecdotal, unacademic, doesn’t tell us anything we don’t know, doesn’t propose solutions and doesn’t describe the economic reality of these men although it constantly refers to it
I want to read this book because of this blog post: The Sifted Bookshelf: Angry White Men . ...more
Oct 01, 2019 rated it liked it
DNF at p. 168. There's a lot of good stuff in here, but for me it's the wrong book at the wrong time. Had I read it when it was first published in 2013, I probably would have found it eye-opening, or at the very least thought-provoking. The through-line Kimmel traces from school shooters to MRAs to domestic abusers and more is certainly important, and he (rightfully) keeps coming back to the idea that, while many of these men have legitimate things to be angry about, they are, critically, direct ...more
Bea Zoer
Jul 21, 2018 rated it really liked it
Although I almost never read anything other than novels, this book is well written and kept me interested to the last page. Very interesting analysis of what makes white males so angry in the USA. It helps me in my analysis of possible reasons why some churches still do not like women to take on leadership-positions and education tasks, while often they enpicture females and males in 'typical' roles. ...more
Mar 08, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ebooks, reviewed
"Angry White Men" authored by Michael Kimmel PhD is a well researched, solid, yet sometimes shocking look at the new minority of white men. These angry men feel entitled, a loss of power and male privilege, are quick to blame minorities, feminists, corporatists for their grievances. This book is recommended for anyone interested in understanding these men, and the root cause of their rage, which can spill out into personal and community life. Kimmel has authored many notable books, publications, ...more
Bonnie McDaniel
This book was a bit of a non-fictional break, given all the young adult fiction I've been reading lately. Sometimes it's hard to get into these kinds of books, with their dense and nuanced subjects, but that wasn't the case with this one. It's written in an easy-to-read, accessible manner, for all it's covering some deep and complicated topics.

The gist of this book is that American culture is changing from a patriarchal one to an egalitarian one, and white men in particular are having a hard ti
Sep 18, 2016 rated it did not like it
Shelves: book-club
Who is really angry here? It’s the author. I just can’t get through this book. I’m quitting on page 112. I did jump ahead a few pages and to the epilogue to see if there were any changes in style, temperament, any answers or suggestions in how to move forward other than blaming everyone and everything but yourself on where you are in life, there is none.

Kimmel’s repetitive writing style is annoying and frustrating to read through.
His bio says he is a Sociology Professor yet his writing reminds
Jan 10, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A well-researched look at what the author calls the middle- and lower-class white men's "aggrieved entitlement" movement. Basically, these men believe they are entitled to a standard of living as good as their fathers and grandfathers, but because of automation and global capitalism, they believe they're not getting it (and they're not). Instead of blaming capitalism and neoliberalism, however, the men look for closer targets and ones that seem most obvious to them: feminist women, metrosexuals, ...more
May 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Wow. Before I read the book, I read some reviews (especially the critical ones, as I always do) and they just proved to me how misinformed people can be. Contrary to many readers' opinions, this book IS based in fact, studies, and empirical knowledge. The author talks repeatedly about his interviews and research informing his conclusions but that seems to bother some people. The main point the author brings up: that there is so much anger from a combination of a disappearing white privilege, a c ...more
Ryan Mishap
Jul 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
A diligent survey of of the various classes of men expressing their "aggrieved entitlement" to use the perfect phrase Kimmel employs. Cogently strips away the balderdash and blather of anti-feminist men, racists, right-wingers, and men who hate women. More than this, though, he attempts to understand where this anger arises and offers ideas for men to get over it (as it were) and embrace progress towards a more equal and equitable society.

One criticism I had for this was the references to pop c
Aug 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Angry White Men is a prescient non-fiction exposé of society's masculine anger, describing the aggrieved entitlement experienced by white, middle-class men in America. The book aptly defines the attitudes and beliefs of Donald Trump's base more than three years prior to his election.

Kimmel uses the term "aggrieved entitlement" to explain the anger felt by white men in America towards women, minorities, and immigrants during a period of increasing economic disenfranchisement of the US working cla
Ali Juhdi
Oct 05, 2018 rated it really liked it
Good book but I feel the "white" in the title is mostly inaccurate since the description is basically for the universal toxic masculinity which transcends race and nationality. ...more
Jun 20, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2018-books
There were two reoccurring themes in this book. I'll do my best to repeat the author's language:

1. White men are right to be angry, but they're mailing their anger to the wrong address.
2. White men's feelings are real, but they're not true.

This book was written before Donald Trump was elected President. Which... is important. Because if I had read this book before the election I probably would have been a lot more scared about the outcome of the vote. Kimmel has since gone back and written a ne
Danika Libertine
Mar 29, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: gender-studies
A dear friend recommended this book to me. I first purchased the book in eBook format but ended up listening to it in audible so I could listen to it while doing other things due to a pretty tight schedule lately.

I thought I was pretty aware of this kind of white male entitlement but some of the information in this book put a different perspective on what I thought I knew and introduced some other types and groups I was not aware of. I found a lot of it quite frightening. I live in the suburbs
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Goodreads Librari...: Combine authors and edition 3 8 Nov 04, 2020 01:05PM  

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Michael Scott Kimmel is an American sociologist, specializing in gender studies. He is among the leading researchers and writers on men and masculinity in the world today. The author or editor of more than twenty volumes, his books include The Politics of Manhood, and The History of Men (2005).

His documentary history, "Against the Tide: Pro-Feminist Men in the United States, 1776-1990" (Beacon, 19

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  If you listen to NPR regularly, you’ve likely heard the voice of Shankar Vedantam, the longtime science correspondent and host of the radio...
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“Take a little thought experiment. Imagine all the rampage school shooters in Littleton, Colorado; Pearl, Mississippi; Paducah, Kentucky; Springfield, Oregon; and Jonesboro, Arkansas; now imagine they were black girls from poor families who lived instead in Chicago, New Haven, Newark, Philadelphia, or Providence. Can you picture the national debate, the headlines, the hand-wringing? There is no doubt we’d be having a national debate about inner-city poor black girls. The entire focus would be on race, class, and gender. The media would doubtless invent a new term for their behavior, as with wilding two decades ago. We’d hear about the culture of poverty, about how living in the city breeds crime and violence. We’d hear some pundits proclaim some putative natural tendency among blacks toward violence. Someone would likely even blame feminism for causing girls to become violent in a vain imitation of boys.

Yet the obvious fact that virtually all the rampage school shooters were middle-class white boys barely broke a ripple in the torrent of public discussion. This uniformity cut across all other differences among the shooters: some came from intact families, others from single-parent homes; some boys had acted violently in the past, and others were quiet and unassuming; some boys also expressed rage at their parents (two killed their parents the same morning), and others seemed to live in happy families.”
“In our families, we are finding that abandoning that sense of masculine entitlement actually enables us to live happier lives.” 4 likes
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