Public transit in Madrid is putting up notices against “manspreading” at the urging of feminist organisations. I wonder what their position on womanspreading is because I do it a lot. 

For language lovers, I’m providing the newly coined Spanish expression for manspreading: ““despatarre masculino”.


10 thoughts on “Manspreading”

  1. I tend to sit comfortably (ok, sloppily) only when no one is sitting next to/opposite me. 😛 I hate it when someone invades my space with their legs, it’s quite rude. Hell, it isn’t that hard to keep your knees at shoulder width.
    Teaching some “public transport etiquette” isn’t a bad idea, though I don’t think it has to be gendered.


  2. These “feminists” would probably say that you are an extremely courageous feminist challenging patriarchy by asserting a woman’s right to her space in the public sphere, a place too often dominated by men’s bodies (because people are now called “bodies” all the time).


  3. I’m a fairly mousy creature as far as my body language goes, but in this case, I’ll take annoying other bus-goers over crushing my balls with my own legs.

    I guess it’s a bit of an awkward thing to talk about, but except for fringe cases, I doubt it’s really a display of power thing as much as it is just wanting to avoid all the weird stuff that happens when your external bits get sweaty. Otherwise we’d see men splayed out with all their limbs far out like some sort of human kite, instead of just the legs.


    1. I also notice a lot of tall, long-legged guys doing it as a means of preventing their knees from occupying most of the (usually very narrow) aisle. But it really doesn’t appear like taking a lot of space in public transport is gendered behaviour, although the female version of this relies more often on strategic bag deployment than sitting with one’s legs spread.


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