Warning: This is not the best light of some men, some of the time, and no it does not come across that I have time or space for men’s perspectives in this post. Those who know me know where I really stand.
Mansplaining – the act of complaining about how the world does not understand the perspective and difficulties of being a man in “a woman’s world.”
There is a lot of mansplaining in Mali. Initiatives that are aimed at women – entrepreneurship programs, internships, job oppiortunities etc. are often met with strong resentment from males in the country. It’s as if the understanding that just in being male they have been given better access to education, have had more job opportunities, and probably received more job advancements than their female counterparts.
For example, In honour of International women’s day my company gave out treats to all of our female employees. And as I walked into a training room that was filled with 27 men, and 2 women – the complaints started. “But where is ours?” Don’t we get anything for women’s day?” . Now, I am all for male and female equality and I understand that a 3 dimensional conversation around gender equality needs to include everyone no matter their genitalia. However, one day a year could we not recognize the fact that 27 out of 29 people in a group of new recruits are male not because we don’t hire women but because it is hard to find women who meet the criteria of having post high school education. Don’t you see (men!) that inherently just based on your gender you have already been given the advantage?! So no. I will not give you a treat for your privilegde. I will continue to create spaces for women in the work place and I will continue to reject that premise that women are any more complicated than men.
I will not hear your mansplaining. I have no time for that. You are just getting in the way of creating a better, just world for everyone. Ain’t no one got time for that.