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in: A Man's Life, Podcast

March 11, 2020 Last updated: March 26, 2020

Podcast #592: Being a Man in the Lousy Modern World

Emerson famously said “society everywhere is in conspiracy against the manhood of every one of its members.” 

My guest today says things have gotten a lot worse since Emerson uttered those words over a century and a half ago. His name is Robert Twigger. We last had him on the show to discuss his book Micromastery. Today we discuss a book he wrote 20 years ago called Being a Man in the Lousy Modern World. We begin our conversation discussing how the modern world infantilizes men so they’re easier to control, and whether Robert thinks things have changed since he initially published the book. We then dig into the four factors Robert says need to be in place for a man to feel like a man, and why experiencing these qualities has become harder to do in the present age. We then discuss what Robert did to counter the currents of modern malaise like hiking the Pyrenees mountains and learning a martial art, and whether doing those things actually made him feel manlier. We end our conversation with what men can do to start fighting back against the conspiracy against their manhood.

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Show Highlights

  • The impetus for this book when Robert wrote it 20 years ago 
  • What is it about the modern world that makes manliness feel obsolete?
  • How the modern world keeps us perpetually children 
  • The 4 factors to be in place for a man to really be a man 
  • Watered down modern rituals 
  • Is courage truly rare? How do we test ourselves?
  • What is it about handiness that makes you feel manly?
  • Violence and manliness 
  • Passivity vs. action 
  • Society’s disservice to boys and men 
  • How to find courage, rites of passage, and adventure in our world 
  • Do these self-made rites of passage make a difference in your psyche? 
  • What Robert’s kids thought about the book 
  • What can men do today to start feeling more masculine? 

Resources/People/Articles Mentioned in Podcast

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