Valizadeh, aka “Roosh V.” is one of the more visible “Pick Up Artist” (PUA) figures, and one of the most overtly sexist. He’s written a series of books on how to sleep with women in various countries such as Brazil, (“Poor favela chicks are very easy, but quality is a serious problem”) but advises his readers to avoid Denmark as Nordic social democracy has made Danish women too independent. He cites Arthur Schopenhauer to argue that women are less rational than men and so should be controlled by them. He insists “no” usually doesn’t mean no, and anyway women should understand that men just can’t stop themselves (so much for all that rational decision making…).
Christmas (we have it on the best authorities) is a time to be jolly. Sure, like being told by your parents that “you shall not only go to your cousins, but enjoy it”, the whole thing can become paradoxically onerous, as Slavoj Žižek used to say. (Why are you telling us we should be happy when we really should, by ourselves, actually be happy …)
Last semester, halfway through a meeting of my ‘Meaning of Life’ seminar, I found myself lying on a window seat along the eastern wall of the classroom. I was scheduled for spinal surgery in a few months, and sitting and standing were tough. I needed a break.