[fyeg_gen-l] Some Green Men published a Manifesto for the New Man

Michel Mosser michel.mosser at gmail.com
Thu Apr 29 01:39:52 CEST 2010

Hey Franza !

Thanks for the info and, as far as I'm concerned, I'd say "about time" ;)


2010/4/29 Franza Drechsel <franza.drechsel at gruene-jugend.de>

> Hello everywhere,
> within the Greens and the YG this manifesto is discussed quite
> controversially.
> Maybe you find it interesting - this is an article in English, so you might
> understand it better. ;) The actual Manifesto is only available in German, I
> think (I am sorry!).
> Read more:
> http://www.spiegel.de/international/germany/0,1518,689136,00.html
> Green Party Unveils a 'New Man' Manifesto
> By Florian Gathmann <Florian_Gathmann at spiegel.de>
> *A new manifesto from the German Green Party aims to banish macho men for
> good. It has stirred debate among men, even if a number of female Green
> politicians remain unconvinced.*
> The German Green Party has made a name for itself at the cutting edge of
> women's rights. It was the first party to have a 50 percent quota for women
> in list-based elections -- and they always put a woman at the top of the
> list. At Green Party conferences men and women give speeches in strict
> alternation. No other German party takes the equality issue so seriously,
> and this weekend the Greens, once again, are holding a two-day National
> Women's Conference in the city of Bonn.
> <http://adserv.quality-channel.de/RealMedia/ads/click_nx.ads/www.spiegel.de/international/artikel/1761920941@Sub1,Sub2,Top1,Top2,TopRight,Left,Right,Right1,Right2,Right3,Right4,Right5,Middle,Middle1,Middle2,Middle3,Bottom,Bottom1,Bottom2,Bottom3,Position1,Position2,x01,x02,x03,x04,x05,x06,x07,x08,x09,x10,x11,x12,x20,x21,x22,x23,x70,VMiddle2,VMiddle,VRight,Spezial%21Middle2>
> Even if some male party members think the Greens tend to exaggerate a bit
> on this issue, they do not dare say so publicly. Instead a new group of
> young party members has come up with an even stronger gender message, this
> time shining the spotlight on men: "We no longer need to be macho!" is the
> title of their manifesto which deals with "equality and male feminism."
> The signatories include several Green politicians from the European
> parliament, the German Bundestag as well as local Green leaders. "We no
> longer want to be macho," it declares, "we want to be people. You are not
> born a man, you are turned into one."
> The men's manifesto makes two main points. First, men need to break out of
> their traditional gender roles. "We need a new awareness of a new
> masculinity," write its co-authors Sven Lehmann and Jan Philipp Albrecht.
> Second, they argue that their fellow men need to realize that real equality
> will not happen without their participation.
> *'Boys' Days'*
> "We want to live differently!" writes Lehmann, a senior member of the North
> Rhine-Westphalia branch of the party, and the European parliamentarian
> Albrecht. They appeal for a slower pace of life, less focus on profit and
> more health consciousness. They want to start holding "Boys' Days and
> gender-sensitive career-guidance sessions."
> "Interest in mechanical engineering is not something we are born with,"
> they say.
> Perhaps unsurprisingly, the manifesto, which has recently been posted
> online, has sparked all sorts of angry responses. Co-author Albrecht says he
> was expecting the flood of insults like "bloody homos." But less expected
> were comments like: "What's this subject got to do with you?"
> For Albrecht that was exactly the point, because "women are ahead in this
> issue -- now men have to take the lead," he says. Or, as co-author Lehmann
> puts it: "Where are men in the equal rights debate?"
> The manifesto is signed by politicians from both the left and the center of
> the party, both heterosexuals and homosexuals. Even the party's co-chief Cem
> Özdemir has welcomed the initiative. "Gender justice has been a key concern
> for the Green Party since it was founded," he says. "Therefore, it is also
> an issue for men." The problems described by the smooth-talking Özdemir
> match the tenor of the feminist debate: "We are witnessing a public
> discussion by men about men, even though some men feel a bit uncomfortable
> about the deconstruction of the male role."
> The Green co-leader himself has experience toying with stereotypes.
> Following the birth of his second child he took a few weeks off from party
> leadership, making a name for himself as the nappy-changing politician of
> the moment. But even that is not enough for the anti-macho manifesto
> writers: Are men really becoming "new fathers"? they ask. "Or it is actually
> a 'mirage' which merely allows fathers a prolonged break from their jobs?"
> This could be read as a critique of the nappy-changing party leader, one
> signatory admitted, but went on to stress that a party leader is not in a
> position to take a prolonged stint off work, like many other fathers.
> *Green Women Want More*
> <http://adserv.quality-channel.de/RealMedia/ads/click_nx.ads/www.spiegel.de/international/artikel/1761920941@Sub1,Sub2,Top1,Top2,TopRight,Left,Right,Right1,Right2,Right3,Right4,Right5,Middle,Middle1,Middle2,Middle3,Bottom,Bottom1,Bottom2,Bottom3,Position1,Position2,x01,x02,x03,x04,x05,x06,x07,x08,x09,x10,x11,x12,x20,x21,x22,x23,x70,VMiddle2,VMiddle,VRight,Spezial%21Middle3>
> So what do female members of the Green Party make of this? Astrid
> Rothe-Beinlich, the Green spokesperson for women's issues, welcomes the new
> manifesto. "The Greens have always been a progressive party," she says,
> adding it was high time "that men also take responsibility for the issue of
> equality." But their party colleagues should not simply applaud the
> manifesto, she says. The question now, in her words, is, "How can it be
> implemented?"
> Franza Drechsel, Green Youth spokesperson for gender and political affairs,
> also praised the new manifesto in principle. "It is good that men
> participate in the debate," she says, adding "this is far from enough ...
> the authors remain stuck in the rut of talking about two sexes." Above all,
> the debate is not just about men, she argues: "In the long term we can only
> be in this together."
> But Green Party women are not exactly cooperative either, because this
> weekend they are keeping to themselves. The speakers at the National Women's
> Congress in Bonn are exclusively female. So the question remains: When will
> the Green anti-macho men hold their first national meeting?
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Michel Mosser

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