“Entitled to everything, responsible for nothing:” Gendered Discourses of Antifeminism, Biological Determinism, and Violence in Two Communities of Reddit’s Manosphere
The manosphere, described as a “loose confederacy” of groups joined together by antifeminist ideologies (Ging 2019), flourishes online, especially in online spaces that allow for ideologically aligned, but geographically dispersed, individuals to come together in community. This research examines two communities from the website reddit.com, /r/MensRights and /r/TheRedPill. These communities make up small parts of the larger manosphere, but are each important models for the intersections of sex/gender systems, masculinities, and ideological variants of male supremacy that take place under its umbrella. Incorporating data from a digital ethnographic project, this article explores, compares, and contrasts three gendered discursive practices manifest in /r/MensRights and /r/TheRedPill. Examining user posts and community generated content, I situate these two groups’ claims to antifeminism, fundamental differences between men and women, and the leveraging of violence (broadly understood), as overlapping ways of claiming particular masculinities both unified within the manosphere and divergent between groups. Despite their classification as communities of the manosphere, the ways these two groups express their ideological standpoints and situate themselves as ideological-oriented communities, set them apart from one another. This critique extends our knowledge about how the masculinities of the manosphere, and their socio-political implications, are significant and growing problems as we seek to fashion a more just society.
Keywords: manosphere, men’s rights, red pill, masculinity, digital ethnography, reddit.