I Hate Men is a risible, solipsistic cri de coeur that only a naive young woman could have written. While it does the cause of feminism no good, its publication does at least demonstrate that, unlike vast swathes of the world where women have very few rights, in European democracies like France and the UK, freedom of speech does still exist. Including the incitement to hatred of men.
What is baffling is that Harmange writes like someone who has just been released from some boarding school whose chief aim is to teach girls how to catch and keep a man. It’s OK to be single, she thunders. It’s good to have female friends! There is, she says, “a load of awesome women” out there! We don’t have to think that men’s opinions are “more valuable than ours”! Yes, we know, Pauline. Even those of us who were born more than 30 years before you had grasped some of these possibilities. What we also know is that there is still plenty of scope for serious discussions about the sexism that runs through society. Books like Caroline Criado Perez’s Invisible Women, which marshals evidence to make an argument. Books that don’t just trot out the same old stereotypes and lace them with a dose of manufactured hate.