‘ahems and ahahs’

Literature, & Etc.

Steve Harvey:

with one comment

Take my advice and don’t buy Steve Harvey’s new relationship/self-help book: “Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man”. You’re asking me, why should I condemn a man and his book when I’ve not taken the time to read it. Let me share some of his so called advice, and these are quotations and clips from interviews on Oprah and selections from his book. (Warning: May cause nausea.)

“I think lists are great. You’ve got to have them. You’ve got to know what you’re looking for. Without standards, you settle for stuff.”

“You’ve got to wait on this guy to come along. He’s coming. He’s out there. He’s already created. God has already made him,”

“He has a job. He’s wearing the clothes you like. He’s walking around. You’re not waiting on him to be born. He exists today. All you’ve got to do is stay patient.”

“You don’t know the DNA of a good man,”

“We profess, we provide and we protect,” he says. “A man has got to see where he fits into the providing and protecting role. If you’ve got everything, you can do everything, you’ve got your own car … you’ve got a guard dog and a handgun. The guy is thinking, ‘Where do I fit in here?’

“You’ve got to make a space for him to fit in so he can come in and do what men do.”

“You can’t let your independence and your ability to take care of yourself be the dominant factor of who you are,” he says. “You know how many times I hear women say: ‘I don’t need a man. I’ve got this. Why don’t a man just come to me?’ Just like you’re saying it, you’re projecting it. If you’re projecting it, where does a man fit in there? Just relax.” [!!!!]

“Ladies, you’re not going to get closure from a man,” he says. “We don’t do closure. And you know why? Because we don’t even know you’re having an issue. We’re stupid.”

“We’re not courteous. Listen, it’s not in our DNA as great communicators anyway,” he says. “See women keep waiting on closure. Bring it on. If you want closure, close. Move on with your life.”

Sex, or “the cookie” as Steve calls it in his book: It’s critical,” he says. “It’s one of the three things that a man has to have. A man has to have love, support and the cookie. [If] anyone of those three things is missing in the relationship, he’s going to go get it somewhere else.”

“A man having sex outside of his relationship is very different from [a woman],” he says. “Once we shower and wash off, we cool.

“Please know that about a man. If he’s going to cheat, it has nothing to do with his emotional attachment to you or his feelings for you.”

So yeah….that’s Steve Harvey and his philosophy for relationships. It’s nice to see that arguments that were being made in the 1950’s about the roles of women and men are still being used today. Essentialist arguments that root these socially constructed patriarchal ideologies in DNA.

I placed some exclamatory marks in the one selection that I think deserves the most attention.

“You can’t let your independence and your ability to take care of yourself be the dominant factor of who you are,” he says. “You know how many times I hear women say: ‘I don’t need a man. I’ve got this. Why don’t a man just come to me?’ Just like you’re saying it, you’re projecting it. If you’re projecting it, where does a man fit in there? Just relax.”

So if you’re a woman and you’re independent and strong and motivated, Steve’s advice to you is to not let these attributes define you as a woman. Good to know.

His “3 p’s” garbage is also quite disturbing. I also enjoy that as a man I am also being defined and constricted into a very particular role. I am unable to process emotions and think or communicate with a woman, because as Harvey says: “it’s not in our DNA as great communicators anyway,” and I’m also only good at grunting and lifting things and protecting women from large beasts that live in the wild.

It’s not just the hate speech that Mr. Steve Harvey preaches that upsets me, it is the way that he attempts to naturalize roles for men and women and the notion that all men are like this. Mr. Steve Harvey makes all of us look bad and sets things back, back into the 50’s and beyond.

I don’t think that I’m over-reacting or reading too much into this type of ideological hate-talk.

Please share your own thoughts and I urge you to go to oprah.com [ something I thought I’d never say on this blog ] and watch the clips. You’ll also notice how silent Oprah is, which I guess is in keeping with Steve’s advice. It is amazing that one of the most independent and strong females on television brings on a guest that gives advice of how wrong and hurtful this way of living is for relationships.

The clips are from about a week ago. Mr. Harvey has been making the rounds on television and radio promoting his new book. Aside from talking about the ills of strong women and the dangers of this for a relationship he’s recently given his advice on religion, specifically those who do not have faith, atheists:

It seems that for Mr. Steve Harvey the world is a horrible place, full of strong minded women, men who communicate well with women, and atheists who shake the foundations of religion, such a horrid world we live in, thinking and acting, what the fuck were we thinking.

Written by thebeliever07

June 20, 2009 at 8:31 am

One Response

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  1. Relationships as exchanges? Perhaps. But suggesting that all relationships between men and women are an exchange of sex (for the man) for protection (for the woman) is somewhat reductive. And while I’d describe Gaurav as infinitely supportive, I’m not sure he’s really protecting me from anything (shame!), and before we were dating I think I was fairly self-sustaining (double shame!), though not nearly to the same degree as Oprah, the woman who gave him the space to pontificate so (and I’d like to see the man who can provide for and protect Oprah, who probably hires bodyguards with her monies).

    Note Harvey doesn’t even discuss relationships between men and men, or women and women. Should we assume that the woman who “projects” that she doesn’t need a man, or the man who doesn’t feel the need to provide/protect/profess (or who, gasp! occasionally isn’t in pursuit of sex) must make up the queer population (or is in some other way failing as a man or woman)? This kind of essentialist normalising is pretty offensive to men, to women, to homo- and heterosexuals.

    Also, you didn’t include the quote about relationships failing because women don’t dress up and wear make up after they pick up the kids from school, make dinner, &c. A point that’s not only blatently misogynist, but again, not so subtly implying the “normal” nuclear family lifestyle.


    June 22, 2009 at 9:02 am

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