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have you guys read 'The Power'?

14 Jun 2017 02:18 - 08 Nov 2017 04:13 #54748 by Helstar
Replied by Helstar on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?
I think you're falling into the same error. She didn't want to explain what women would do if they had the upper hand over men (it's not the point of the book).

By her own words (obviously she explains the concept better): "Nothing happens to a man in this book that is not happening right now to a woman somewhere in the world. If my novel is a dystopia then we are living in a dystopia right now. [cut...] Men are more horrified by this book than women. Which is as it should be, and is part of the point I think. Men look at me like a monster for writing these things and I have to point out that I wasn't the one who invented the ideas of rape, of sexual slavery, of imprisoning the physically weaker gender, of genital mutilation to stop the physically weaker gender from enjoying sex, of selective abortions of one gender. I didn't invent any of those things, I just picked them up and turned them over like an hourglass, to see how they looked upside down. And the answer is: it just feels different when the gun is pointed between your eyes than it does to watch it being pointed at someone else. It just does feel more real and more horrifying when you're the one at risk."
Last edit: 08 Nov 2017 04:13 by Helstar.

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14 Jun 2017 02:51 - 14 Jun 2017 02:51 #54750 by lowerbase
Replied by lowerbase on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?
Shadar wrote: I don't believe any of us have gone where this book goes.

Many power porn and role reversal stories has gone where this book went. Puppetman's LBDII from nearly 20 years ago is exactly 'The Power' with muscles instead. Even the level of fascination with this upside down world is the same.

The Power, of course, looks deeper, but still, at its bones, is exactly what most the FMG/NWO genre do. For many of us this book is very familiar.

The only big difference is the last third of the book. The absolute corruption gets so ugly that most fantasies stop long before The Power goes.
Last edit: 14 Jun 2017 02:51 by lowerbase.

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14 Jun 2017 03:49 #54752 by AuGoose
Replied by AuGoose on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?
Honestly, I don't expect many people who are interested in the sociology of the scenario to find the idea appealing OR CONVINCING that "if sexual power dynamics were reversed, women would be 10,000 times more likely than men to act like serial killers". To say "this is all happening to women right now" and then to discard the frequency of such events as having any importance in such a comparison is seriously sophomoric.

Entertaining? Sure. Insightful? Really not.
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14 Jun 2017 04:01 #54754 by shadar
Replied by shadar on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?
Way back in the 80's, I read and contributed stories to the FemDom genre. That was back in the pre-Internet BBS days.

What drove me away were role reversals where powerful women acted like (or worse) than the worst of men.

I don't think it works that way, or at least it wasn't my thing, and that's what drove me to do my own thing, which became the Aurora Universe.

Shadar

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14 Jun 2017 05:25 - 14 Jun 2017 05:27 #54757 by Pepper
Replied by Pepper on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?

Helstar wrote: I think you're falling into the same error. She didn't want to explain what women would do if they had the upper hand over men (it's not the point of the book).

By her own words (obviously she explains the concept better): "Nothing happens to a man in this book that is not happening right now to a woman somewhere in the world. If my novel is a dystopia then we are living in a dystopia right now. [cut...] Men are more horrified by this book than women. Which is as it should be, and is part of the point I think. Men look at me like a monster for writing these things and I have to point out that I wasn't the one who invented the ideas of rape, of sexual slavery, of imprisoning the physically weaker gender, of genital mutilation to stop the physically weaker gender from enjoying sex, of selective abortions of one gender. I didn't invent any of those things, I just picked them up and turned them over like an hourglass, to see how they looked upside down. And the answer is: it just feels different when the gun is pointed between your eyes than it does to watch it being pointed at someone else. It just does feel more real and more horrifying when you're the one at risk."

Yes, all those things happen, but there's also a lot of effort, both social and direct, put into stopping them. I've not read "The Power". When a woman in that world kills or rapes a man is she investigated and prosecuted? If she's accused, is the victim's name withheld from the news reports, and her reputation is trashed? I have tremendous sympathy for anyone who gets raped, and I'd hope it never happens to anyone (even while I know it will). But without those sorts of attitudes, it's not really a role reversal.
Last edit: 14 Jun 2017 05:27 by Pepper.

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14 Jun 2017 06:46 #54759 by Jabbrwock
Replied by Jabbrwock on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?

shadar wrote: Way back in the 80's, I read and contributed stories to the FemDom genre. That was back in the pre-Internet BBS days.

What drove me away were role reversals where powerful women acted like (or worse) than the worst of men.

I don't think it works that way, or at least it wasn't my thing, and that's what drove me to do my own thing, which became the Aurora Universe.

Shadar

There are plenty of sociology studies on behavioral differences between men and women. Women are less likely to resort to force, a trend produced by millions of years of primate evolution producing women who are less able to effectively resort to force, and behaviors among women that are long term neurological adaptations to that reduced ability. It's unlikely that a sudden change in power would instantly, or even quickly, reverse that trend.

That said, power corrupts, and if women gained the personal power to seize political and economic power from men, it would be the most aggressive and ruthless women who ended up holding that power. And while women are less likely than men to resort to force, that says nothing about the probability that any specific woman will do so. And the women who would wind up in charge, given that the entire scenario is predicated on overthrowing all established social conventions limiting behavior of those who possess personal power by raw force, would be the ones most likely to resort to force.

My personal problem with all the stories where women gaining reasonable levels of physical superiority over men (ie, not kryptonian levels) is that firearms made that level of physical superiority more or less irrelevant long ago. Since men *ARE* statistically more likely to resort to force than women, the result of women being able to overpower men by the same degree as men currently overpower women or anything close would just be a massive spike in firearm ownership among men so that they could resort to force effectively when needed. Physical power is not why men dominate the halls of political and economic power, and I seriously doubt that anything except the gender trends toward different interests and paths of pursuing same changing would really alter that dynamic.

Now if women turn into Power Girl or Wonder Woman or whatever, all bets are off. But the power level has to be one that makes modern technology mostly irrelevant to have a serious chance to shake up society.

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14 Jun 2017 06:58 - 14 Jun 2017 07:11 #54760 by lowerbase
Replied by lowerbase on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?
Just one thing, guys, the book is smarter than that. Not all girls are evil, and not all are good either. Anyway men feel threatened, and they respond in kind, creating violence on both ends.

Like I said before, the book is meta. There is two places in the world she crafted:

one world which is "our time", and is changing, where all this violence happens, the 'shift of power' between genders happens here

another world (or time) which is set 5000 years into the future where the lack of equality between genders is becoming an ongoing issue, and men are starting to be seen as equals by women (but not so equal yet, I'd say it would be our gender inequality from the 40's).

And that's the thing, it is not just a reversal in society, it is a reversal into all our history, as ---spoilers--- humanity starts again, with women on top. And it evolves in these 5000 years from this lawless violence until civilization starts to shape again and women stop brutalizing men because they just can. Just like now.
Last edit: 14 Jun 2017 07:11 by lowerbase.
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14 Jun 2017 23:28 #54795 by ace191
Replied by ace191 on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?
In developed countries, women are maybe 70 to 80% equal to men and this number seems to be slowly creeping up. In much of the world, they are much lower and in some places, almost slaves. Women's brains are bathed in estrogen. Men's testosterone. A power transfer would not change that. But what would happen if men suddenly got 1/2 a standard deviation dumber and women got 1/2 a standard deviation smarter? Within a generation or two, the balance of money and power would change dramatically in developed countries, but what would it do in places where brawn was much more important than brains? I am guessing not much. But what would happen if men became 8 inches shorter and women became 8 inches taller?

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14 Jun 2017 23:57 #54798 by AuGoose
Replied by AuGoose on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?
What would happen would be (many) men would still be inclined to mate freely and as widely as possible and women would still be stuck with pregnancy. Not everything in our gender dynamics is about strength or the threat of violence. We'd still have the exact same "best chance for propagating your genes" strategies and we'd still see men, not women, be society's surplus and thus the ones sent off to war. And having been their nation's warriors, you get a certain degree of expectation of respect and influence for being the ones who fight and die for the cultural ideals.

Honestly I don't see the police responding to increased danger with anything other than an increased level of militancy. "Treat as armed and dangerous" is the job. Having everyone know that women are lethally dangerous is just going to make their zero tolerance behavior all the more justifiable. "I smelled ozone, I blew her brains out." Everyone nods and next shift starts. Ultimately, this kind of shift mostly means men stop being nice. Look at our history - we've all but exterminated every single species on this planet that makes us feel threatened. The primal male reaction to being threatened is NOT to be cowed. It's to kill it.

The most important power in the usual ubergirl suite for establishing their freedom from restrain has never been strength. Or flight. It's invulnerability. Women in The Power don't have that gift to the best of my knowledge, so the running amok I've been told occurs seems... wishful thinking... on the author's part, from someone who is a little unclear on the rest of the sociology at work outside of strength disparity and the threat of violence.

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15 Jun 2017 00:34 #54799 by Woodclaw
Replied by Woodclaw on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?

AuGoose wrote: What would happen would be (many) men would still be inclined to mate freely and as widely as possible and women would still be stuck with pregnancy. Not everything in our gender dynamics is about strength or the threat of violence. We'd still have the exact same "best chance for propagating your genes" strategies and we'd still see men, not women, be society's surplus and thus the ones sent off to war. And having been their nation's warriors, you get a certain degree of expectation of respect and influence for being the ones who fight and die for the cultural ideals.


I'm not sure if this social dynamics applies any longer in many first world countries. Personally I have the utmost respect for soldiers, but many people see them as a nuisance or a relic.

AuGoose wrote: Honestly I don't see the police responding to increased danger with anything other than an increased level of militancy. "Treat as armed and dangerous" is the job. Having everyone know that women are lethally dangerous is just going to make their zero tolerance behavior all the more justifiable. "I smelled ozone, I blew her brains out." Everyone nods and next shift starts. Ultimately, this kind of shift mostly means men stop being nice. Look at our history - we've all but exterminated every single species on this planet that makes us feel threatened. The primal male reaction to being threatened is NOT to be cowed. It's to kill it.

The most important power in the usual ubergirl suite for establishing their freedom from restrain has never been strength. Or flight. It's invulnerability. Women in The Power don't have that gift to the best of my knowledge, so the running amok I've been told occurs seems... wishful thinking... on the author's part, from someone who is a little unclear on the rest of the sociology at work outside of strength disparity and the threat of violence.


On this count I have to agree, the flight or fight instinct is really hard to counter. If we look at the history arms races aren't a thing of the 20th century, but they go back to all of human history. Just for the sake of example, during the 100 years war creating an armor capable of withstanding the constant barrage of the English longbowmen was a priority for the French army. The appearence of superhumans would, most likely, start a new kind of arms race to either kill them of hire them.

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15 Jun 2017 03:31 - 15 Jun 2017 06:53 #54805 by lowerbase
Replied by lowerbase on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?
Women would behave as badly as men. There is a lot of evidence just by looking at women at power positions, from an article about Gengis Khan's daughter:

"Khan's daughter was heartbroken at the news of her husband's death, and requested that every last person in Nishapur be killed. Khan's troops, led by his youngest son, Tolui undertook the gruesome task. Women, children, infants, and even dogs and cats were all murdered. Worried that some of the inhabitants were wounded but still alive, Khan's daughter allegedly asked that each Nishapuran be beheaded, their skulls piled in pyramids. Ten days later, the pyramids were complete."

We are all humans and share the same feelings. Women are not different. Hormones don't change the brain structure.

I don't know AuGoose, I think that every power imbalance brings a new social dynamic.

Think of it, all the female population, any of them can beat any man. It could be Tyson in his prime and an anorexic 15yo on the other side of the room, with these powers she beats him easily, at a safe distance, if not kills him, or at least traumatize him and leaves scars for life with a single 'flex' of her power. How can it not affect the mindset of any girl? She doesn't need to act her powers to order Tyson around, he only needs to know she has the power to do so, just his fear of what she can do is enough for a new social dynamic.

It changes a lot of things that us men take for granted, like walking alone in a street. Backpacking alone in the wilderness. Like entering a frat party alone and drunk. They think twice, thrice, before going anywhere unknown and alone. Women losing these fears is the first thing that happens to them once they get the power. They don't feel defenseless anymore.

Ask women, most will tell you about at least one bad experience where they felt threatened by a man, or by a situation where they felt helpless among them, trapped, or worse. Why so many women carry peppers spray or tasers ? Why so many women avoid any eye contact with strangers at the train station? Why women want relationships with men stronger than themselves to feel protected?

Some women, yes, they never experienced this and are different, but they are still a minority.

This book makes us men understand this feeling of lingering vulnerability that permeates women. I live in Brazil. When I was a kid, rapes with killing happened every other month in my city, to the point one governor said 'rape, but don't kill'. I could be a dumb kid, as a boy never feel threatened, I didn't relate to that. I could walk alone my city at night. No girl would do that. No women would do that at that time.

You'd say that the developed world is above this and it is resolved. We don't know what will happen the next day. What if society collapses in a economic crash and law becomes hard to implement? The lingering vulnerability of women is still there, even if subconsciously.

Globally, we are not still anywhere above this inequality. There are places where female genital mutilation is still 'normal'... I mean, it is the most savage thing you can do to a girl, cutting all her sexual organs until she doesn't feel any pleasure, which is the point of it. It has been 'normal' in several african countries since ever the ancient Egypt.

Once the book flips the switch, and we men are the ones suffering all these things, it changes our perspective. And that's why this book is important.

It goes besides of our interests.

Sorry to be political here, but I think people are judging badly this book for the wrong reasons...
Last edit: 15 Jun 2017 06:53 by lowerbase.
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20 Dec 2017 16:10 #57780 by Helstar
Replied by Helstar on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?

lowerbase wrote: the book sales has been nil til now

After the release of the book in USA, Emma Watson picking it last month as "suggested read" and the presence of it in the various "best 2017 books lists", things look very different now www.washingtonpost.com/entertainment/boo...0fd7f097e_story.html

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20 Dec 2017 23:41 #57786 by lowerbase
Replied by lowerbase on topic have you guys read 'The Power'?
It is a huge success.

I must say, the timing for the wide release of this book couldn't be more poignant and perfect. The Weinstein scandal brought up to surface this strange relationship between power positions and sexual predators to the public awareness, which are mostly men, and the book hits the subject like a spearhead on the head.

My favorite quote of the book is its essence: "What is a man? Whatever a woman isn’t. What is a woman? Whatever a man is not. Tap on it and it’s hollow."

That's really great that this is where the debate is going, and if it becomes a pop phenomenon, might help to end this gender cold war that has been bubbling for a long time.

I wonder if Emma Watson would play Margot in the film/series adaptation...

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