The dynamic in the class I’m taking in Spain is identical to what I saw in the Ukraine of my youth. The women are speaking, arguing, and feeling completely comfortable to express themselves. Even when
they we don’t have much to say, we go on and on, admiring the sound of hearing ourselves speak. In short, we act like American male scholars.
The men in our class giggle uncomfortably and say nothing beyond, “oh, I don’t know. I never thought about it. Hee hee.” In short, they act like American female scholars.
Everybody in the class is Spanish except for me and a female scholar from Poland. Obviously, the female scholar from Poland never shuts up. And clearly thinks I speak too much.
I know very well what makes men (and I mean collectively, not individually) lose their capacity to speak. Once stable employment and familial responsibilities go out of reach, this is what happens to them. Spain is suffering enormously from precarity and the subsequent collapse of the family. And here’s the result.