[Manne] is like a pathologist wielding a scalpel, methodically dissecting various specimens of muddled argument to reveal the diseased tissue inside ... There are plenty of privileged men in the book, but Manne is aware of her own privileged position, too ... One of the qualities that makes Manne’s writing bracing and even thrilling to read is her refusal to ingratiate herself by softening the edges of her resolve ... doesn’t feel as surprising or as tightly coiled as that book. In Down Girl, she offered a brilliantly original understanding of misogyny, a term that can sound too extreme to use, by showing the routine and banal forms that its hostility often took. The concepts of entitlement and privilege aren’t nearly as rare or mysterious; swaths of this new book are clarifying but also familiar ... Still, the subject of Entitled is trickier in many ways than the subject of Down Girl. Feelings of entitlement may be essential to misogyny — but Manne argues that they’re essential to defeating misogyny, too.
... presents a paradigm that maps neatly onto life in lockdown ... Once again, Manne’s work is speaking to a moment that she could not have foreseen ... Manne first posited this slanted system of goods and services in Down Girl, and her arguments in Entitled, her first book for a general audience, may at times feel overly familiar to readers already acquainted with her work. In some cases, the new book remedies the other’s omissions, especially by considering transmisogyny and misogynoir, the interlocking systems of oppression that affect trans and Black women, respectively. Manne illustrates her ideas with recent headlines and cultural touchstones, travelling smoothly from the Brett Kavanaugh hearings to the sentencing of Brock Turner, from the movie Gaslight to the short story Cat Person. Manne examines these stories in order to reveal what male entitlement costs women and non-binary people, and how we might begin to resist its demands, even as the invisible matrix of male power shapes every imaginable interaction ... Manne’s concept of entitlement is versatile and useful; like the theory of gravity, it has equal power in explaining phenomena both big and small ... Manne’s argument explains our predicament but offers little help in imagining a way out of it. Frustratingly, her consideration of caregiving is largely confined to professional women, whom she encourages to expect more of their shiftless co-parents. That suggestion feels far from adequate in a country that has abdicated the responsibility to care for its people. In a world in which women’s labor was not taken for granted, not only would husbands split the 'second shift' with their wives but everyone would have access to decent health care, child care, and care for the elderly—and the workers who provide it would cease to be among the nation’s most underpaid. Those larger changes would require the creation of a political coalition that could bring together women with widely varying levels of what Manne calls 'valid' entitlement. It would be interesting to see Manne make room in her analysis for the ways that women who already possess some power and privilege might begin to use it on others’ behalf.
Quite frequently, I was pleasantly surprised to find that Manne unequivocally names women’s misogyny, even if she only quotes privileged white women being misogynists. And she often notes the existence and validity of queer, working-class, and non-binary people. But it sometimes seems as though, through this rote inclusion, she can safely leave these complications, along with the male victims of misogyny (in its guise as antiblackness or queerphobia), out of the actual abstractions in her analysis ... . One would be forgiven for wondering if Wages Against Housework, Black feminism, queer feminism, and social reproduction theory ever actually happened. Manne’s world, in order to be as wonderfully clear as it is, is eerily shorn, not only of intrafeminist conflict, but of references to actual feminist efforts and campaigns ... To be sure, Manne is doing analytic and moral philosophy, not feminist theorizing ... But the absence of historicity in Entitled robs it of momentum, and of the imaginative resources required to know, in your gut, that another world is possible ... What is most conspicuously missing, ironically enough, is a pledge to teach her daughter about white women’s foundational role in perpetuating patriarchy, and a corresponding resolution to teach her not to enact, well, misogyny ... It is fair to say, I think, that this particular author evinces no real critique of the bakery, or pie-markets. In the end—even leaving aside the anti-utopianism—my personal dissatisfaction with Entitled probably stems from the fact that Manne, by her own admission, is 'not a marcher.'
... a hard-hitting and outrage-inspiring interrogation of the links between male entitlement, both individual and systemic, and misogyny ... Manne concludes with an avowal that girls and women are justifiably entitled to be valued, cared for, and believed, and gives readers a powerful framework for understanding and confronting challenges in their own lives. This incisive feminist treatise is a must-read.
... a book that preaches too heavily to the progressive choir ... Manne draws on decades of studies showing that Americans judge women more harshly than similarly or less competent men, which may interest Gen-Z readers more than their elders, most of whom will be familiar with much of the research. A larger problem is the air of special pleading ... the author’s polemical case also takes a shortsighted view of sexual double standards, genuflecting before recent feminist scholarship and academic orthodoxies while ignoring landmarks like Simone de Beauvoir’s The Second Sex and Shulamith Firestone’s The Dialectic of Sex. It’s striking that this book—appearing just before the Aug. 26 centennial of women’s suffrage—says so little about the contributions of earlier generations of feminists or philosophers. Hopefully in her next book Manne will extend her range and build on the potential she showed in Down Girl ... A well-meaning but myopic view of sexual double standards in the U.S. and how they hurt women.