This chart perfectly breaks down what it means to mansplain
Ahhhh, mansplaining. The not-so-subtle exchange between a man and a woman when the man feels the need to explain something to a woman that she: a) didn’t ask for b) already knows or c) knows way more than he does. Writer and designer Kim Goodwin took to Twitter to share a chart she made titled “Am I Mansplaining?” It would be great if this was distributed to every office, home, and social situation.
Here’s how this chart works. Basically, we start with the first question which is: “Did she ask you to explain it?” If the answer is yes, then please feel free to explain away. It’s not mansplaining and it’s just one person breaking down something for someone else. If she didn’t ask you to explain it, then we enter the treacherous, icky waters of mansplaining central.
The results are further broken down into three categories: probably mansplaining, definitely mansplaining, and just stop talking now. Men enter that final zone when they find themselves explaining something to someone who is a well-known expert on the topic.
I have had more than one male colleague sincerely ask whether a certain behavior is mansplaining. Since apparently this is hard to figure out, I made one of them a chart. pic.twitter.com/7DZ1RTrB3R
— Kim Goodwin (@kimgoodwin) July 19, 2018
A lot of men quickly got defensive, snarky, and angry about this chart. They filled Goodwin’s timeline with complaints that there’s no such thing as mansplaining. They said that they have been “womansplained” in the past and that this is not a “gendered issue.” LOLOL forever.
Why make this a gendered issue? What you are basically defining here is condescending behaviour that can happen in any human interaction, regardless of gender. I take offence at the sexist implication that this is a male oriented behaviour. #shesexist #notallmen #genderequity— Derek Nankivell (@Derek_Nankivell) July 20, 2018
Don’t worry, Goodwin took this dude to church.
It’s gendered because the behavior is predominantly gendered. You might also notice I don’t say “all men” anywhere...the chart just asks if you ARE mansplaining. And by the way, men are by definition not targets of sexism.— Kim Goodwin (@kimgoodwin) July 20, 2018
More importantly, though, women weighed in and said that the chart is both solid gold and completely accurate. Some shared their own experiences with mansplaining.
Drivers regularly slow down to tell me that I shouldn’t be in the middle of the lane. It is always a male. They don’t like it when I explain my rights or safety reasons…
— Joy Cameron (@JoyBringingHope) July 21, 2018
Ha, this reminds me of the time a (male, natch) colleague tried to mansplain the gender gap in education to me. I KNOW I ACTUALLY CO-CHAIR THE NATIONAL WORKING GROUP AND AM FREQUENTLY CONSULTED ON THE ISSUE. https://t.co/CWlWOEdE0C
— Rebecca Ingram (@beccajingram) July 20, 2018
I can’t even count the number of times someone has been in the middle of “explaining“something to me and I have to interrupt to correct them because they don’t even fully know what they’re talking about 🙄 https://t.co/BFHYua9fsz
— The Velvet Dress (@daniellegold_) July 20, 2018
Many, many others said that they wanted to print out multiple copies of this and hand it out at work. And laminate it. And put it on business cards.
Can i get this in a pdf to send to my coworkers? https://t.co/rBIXMPG5ag
— Little B (@biancahoran) July 21, 2018
can someone tell me where I can get this in laminated pocket card form? https://t.co/B1VGjgOw1Q
— Amy Kapczynski (@akapczynski) July 20, 2018
Can I get this on a shirt, mug, poster, or sticker pls? Maybe just tattoo it to my forehead? https://t.co/U9YEP54KaS
— Morgan Ome (@morganhikaru) July 21, 2018
Also, special shout-out to the men who acknowledged that mansplaining exists, discussed their own slip-ups, and noted that they’re making an effort to change. You are shining stars in a very gross, murky comment section.
Lots of us (men) are brought up to be overly confident and forthright, we often get rewarded for it in various ways and this is a part of male privilege. This can also lead to douchbagary such as mansplaining. So charts like this are essential for us to unlearn those behaviours https://t.co/FKVFKQ2OyZ
— Christopher Matthews 🧟♂️ (@DrCRMatthews) July 20, 2018
This chart is everything! And it’s kind of meta since it’s explaining mansplaining without mansplaining. https://t.co/PpANucYqfk
— Vince Warren (@VinceWarren) July 20, 2018
So, the next time you find yourself nodding silently as a man explains something you already know maybe you should whip out this handy-dandy chart and fork it over. Hopefully, they’ll take the “just stop talking” subsection to heart.