Matt Lewis

Women on top: Is ‘the rise of women’ leading to kinky sex?

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Matt K. Lewis
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      Matt K. Lewis

      Matt K. Lewis is a senior contributor to The Daily Caller, and a contributing editor for The Week. He is a respected commentator on politics and cultural issues, and has been cited by major publications such as The Washington Post and The New York Times. Matt is from Myersville, MD and currently resides in Alexandria, VA. Follow Matt K. Lewis on Twitter <a>@mattklewis</a>.

As you probably know, The Atlantic’s Hanna Rosin is out with a new book, called “The End of Men: And the Rise of Women.”

Rosin and I recently chatted about the book, and we discussed all the usual topics (including how a “war on women” can be plausible when they are clearly winning the future).

But toward the end of our conversation, talk turned to sex. And this is where things got interesting (after all, it’s reasonable to think that a changing economy and changing gender roles might eventually manifest itself in the bedroom.)

As Rosin told me,

I interviewed a lot of couples in which the woman was making more money than the man — so breadwinner wives…and I vividly remember one couple in which the man was out of work and he, you know, confessed to me after two or three interviews, that the way he would reestablish his manhood was through sex, basically — that he would have more aggressive, violent sex … not hurtful — this was his wife, not his girlfriend — than he had before, because he felt that was where he needed to work out some of his lost dominance — that he used to get that out of his system in the office.

He used to feel entitled to certain things at home because he was the breadwinner. And the truth was, he wasn’t. And this wasn’t like a traditionally macho guy. This was a guy who actually worked in a creative field. I imagine he’s not the only one. (Emphasis mine.)

This, of course, is anecdotal. But my guess is Rosin might be on to something. What is more, would it be absurd to believe that phenomenon might also be working in reverse — that newly-empowered women might also yearn for an escape from their new found responsibility — even if it’s just a temporary release?

This got me thinking about another possibility. Could it be that two recent and successful literary trends — the amazingly popular S&M-themed “50 Shades” series — and the plethora of new books on the rise of women (see my recent interview with “Manning Up” author Kay Hymowitz) — are the product of a similar development?

Could synergy be at work here? Just as History’s “American Pickers” arguably helps create more of A&E’s “Hoarders” (there is a fine line between a “collector” and a hoarder!), isn’t it possible the same phenomenon that Rosin and Hymowitz are chronicling might also be feeding sales of the “50 Shades of Grey” series?

It’s hard to prove, but it seems plausible.

Either way, I, for one, welcome our female overlords.

Listen to my full conversation with Hanna Rosin. Or download the podcast on iTunes.