When a French Man Explains Masculinity to Women…

Why do I write about Vincent Cespedes? Because he’s a French Philosopher, has published a book called ” Man, explained to women” and when I tweeted about him, here’s what I immediately got from my American friend Julie Daley:

So, what did he say?

On the French radio, France Inter, Vincent Espedes was interviewed in November by Ali Ribeihi to speak about his book “L’Homme expliqué aux femmes” (“Man, explained to women”). I’m going to translate here the most thought provoking ideas and also show how it’s linked to women and power in business and society.

  • The Balls Philosophy. Under this provocative tittle, hides a revolutionary concept. For Vincent Cespedes, virility is not about being “hard”, tough, having big muscles, abs and being ruthless. He calls this kind of virility “The Shock Wave” (l’onde de choc)- Schwartzie. No matter how tough and hard one wants to be, inside, there will always be a place which will be our existential vulnerability and which reminds us of “the trembling of life” (beautiful…). Vincent Cespedes goes one step further, saying that woman is a ball (couille) on her own (!!!), whereas man has only got two small samples…:-)
  • The absurdity of blaming women’s liberation for men’s crisis. There’s now a stream, from Canada, which aims at proving that the loss of a certain sensual appetite and capacity for courting comes from the women’s liberation. This is absurd, obviously. Man doesn’t become less manly, he becomes more human. There is a crisis of masculinity, a shift towards a new representation of man.
  • The real masculine power is the power to radiate WITH not to impose upon (just like in Dan Pink radiators versus sinks…If you want to know more about it, read on the Pink Blog “There are 2 kinds of people in the world. Which are you?” ). The desperate pursuit of power and the resulting helplessness it produces is linked to the impotence of men. What Vincent Cespedes calls impotence, “im-puissance” in French, it’s not sexual impotence, it’s the lack of the ability to let go and surrender to others. According to him, power is the best alibi to hide this impotence, to fill the absence of real letting go.

The ultimate  masculine power is Happiness. No one is more manly than a happy man. Happiness to link with others, to connect. This power is not searched after, it’s given to us, as a present. It’s  the ability to surrender, to let go and to be in the now.

Conclusion, Mesdames, Messieurs?

Vincent Cespédès advocates the Charm Wave instead of the Shock Wave.

You will find everything you’ve always wanted to know about the “beau ténébreux” (handsome dark stranger) in this new book:

Why are Men accused to be egoistic and cowards?

How to conciliate tenderness and virility ?

Responsability and passion ?

How to be a good lover, a good father, a Prince charming and also a House-wife ? 🙂

From Sigmund Freud to George Clooney, including dating and courting rituals, reinventing couples and fatherhood, Vincent Cespedes explores with a disarming frankness and plenty of humour, the new unknown continent of the 21rst century, Man.

I compare this with John Hagel latest blog post in The Big Shift: Challenge and Opportunity for Women. Another male’s perspective, this time American, and business oriented.

Will the next Big Shift surf on The Charm Wave? The Power to weave trusted connections and surrender to the present?

“The future of business belongs to the feminine archetype.  The future belongs to those of us, female or male, who can adopt and embrace the feminine archetype.

PS: If you want to know how to embrace the feminine archetype, I strongly suggest you visit this awesome blog written by a 21rst century Goddess:

Unabashedly Female by Julie Daley, Awakener of Women to their Raw and Wild Creativity.

One of my favorite post is Divine Robes of Feminine Flesh and also Life is Erotic

When will someone write Divine Silk of Masculine Flesh?

6 thoughts

  1. Hi Marion – great points again. I agree in our culture both men and women make huge demands on each other, ( not necessarily consciously) , to create unrealistic levels of expectation. The answer lies in balance! But never easy to achieve!

    1. Very true Dorothy.
      What we most demand in others, or what we most critic, is often what we’re desperately lacking. Couple could last longer and overcome divorces if only we didn’t chose a partner to make up for our shortcomings. I’m drifting there, but your comment made me realize that the biggest demand we make is on ourselves.
      First step before changing gender representations in our culture would be to learn to reflect and accept our femininity/masculinity, fully, powerfully.

  2. Vincent Cespedes’ quote on the ultimate masculine power of Happiness and that no one is more manly than a happy man…applies also to women. Women who are are happy are very feminine (womanly) and powerful and will add a strong connecting link to masculine power. We need to stop blaming each other and finding excuses for each other. We should not be adversaries for power, but should work in tandem with our masculine and feminine strengths, being able to accomplish great things, adding balance to our personal and professional lives.

    1. Lovely to see you here, too, Leona.
      Again very true and , as Dorothy says, never easy to achieve!
      We absolutely need to work in Tandem, find our dancing (or biking!) partner and learn to ride and swing in the same direction, in order to make great things happen!
      Thank you for joining us in this joyful and intense conversation!

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