Category Archives: book/film reviews

New Book: The Illustrated Empathy Gap

Another damned thick, square book! Always, scribble, scribble, scribble! Eh! Mr. Gibbon?” (Duke of Gloucester to Edward Gibbon on the publication of the second volume of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire).

Not that I compare myself to the esteemed historian, but the allusion to a second “damned thick, square book” is apposite – as indeed is the allusion to the decline of a civilisation.

In other words, I’ve just published another book, now available in paperback from Amazon and other book retailers. I apologise for the price but a book just over 700 pages is costly to print, and then there’s the retailer’s mark-up. I’ve pared the “profit” down to only just avoid a loss. UK and USA Amazon links as follows, though it will be available elsewhere and from other retailers.

The book is now available….

UK: The Illustrated Empathy Gap: Challenging public incredulity on the prejudice against men and boys: Collins: 9781838021641: Books. Unfortunately they seem to be inflating the price, which should be £27. So you could try…

Waterstones (UK): The Illustrated Empathy Gap by Collins | Waterstones though the delivery time seems excessive.

USA: The Illustrated Empathy Gap: Challenging public incredulity on the prejudice against men and boys: Collins: 9781838021641: Books

At present it is only available as a paperback. I plan to produce an ebook version but that will take a while to convert.

I reproduce the Preface below…

This book does not duplicate the material in my earlier book, The Empathy Gap, though the broad topics are, of course, the same – specifically gender issues from a male perspective. However, this book is based on blog articles, the originals of which can still be found on my blog The Illustrated Empathy Gap ( Indeed, with few exceptions, the chapter titles are the same as the titles of the corresponding blog articles. But the book has not been compiled simply as cut-and-paste from the blog. All the chapters have been edited, in some cases only slightly and in some cases quite radically.

I had an embarrassment of riches from which to choose. My guiding principle was to avoid duplication with The Empathy Gap whilst choosing material which complemented it and illustrated the phenomenon to which the title refers. Consequently, all the material herein relates to gender and from the perspective of male disadvantage.

Like The Empathy Gap, this book is heavy with references, which (in the ebook) will be hyperlinked in almost all cases. All the references have been reviewed as links do tend to go dead over time. In such cases I have either found the same reference at another URL or found another, equivalent, reference. Unlike the previous book the references appear at the end of the chapter to which they refer, which is easier for the reader.

The original articles date from 2014 to 2023. It was not my intention to carry out a wholesale updating, e.g., by using updated datasets where available (and this is often the case for ONS data, for example). Rather, the original articles are, in part, a testament to the time they were written and I wished this to be maintained. Where this objective is not compromised by also including more recent data I have sometimes done so. In particular, there are some aspects of the original articles that it would be misleading to leave unchanged. For example, in the case of legislation that was planned or in development at the time of the original article it would be very misleading to a reader now to retain the original text if said legislation has now been formally published (e.g., an Act that has received Royal Assent). Consequently, updating may be more extensive in such cases, possibly with the new legislation being quoted. A similar remark applies in the case of changes of government and changes of personnel in the ministries of state, for example. Phrases such as “then Home Secretary” are often deployed for clarity.

The overall purpose of this book is the same as that of The Empathy Gap, namely to illustrate the reality of the gender empathy gap and the closely related gamma bias or gynocentrism. The disadvantages or inequalities suffered by men and boys are substantial and to be found across all aspects of life: education, accidents, health and longevity, domestic abuse, suicide, criminal justice, as victims of crime and, most especially, as parents, including in respect of the impact of family breakdown.

To some this may seem quixotic. Indeed, to some people merely having the temerity to mention male disadvantage may invoke fury. “Inequality” is so often linked with women and girls, or with minorities, that it has become an unchallenged axiom that we need not be concerned about males qua males. Yet the evidence, as presented in The Empathy Gap, presents a radically opposite perspective. The observation that senior positions are still occupied more by men than women – politicians, professors, consultants, high court judges – is not apposite. Nor, I should add, are men so dominant at even these levels as they once were and probably will not remain dominant for much longer. But, in any case, it is not these men who bring down the average male longevity or populate the prisons or swell the ranks of the under-educated. The intersection of men-plus-deprivation is a more virulent combination even than women-plus-deprivation, as the data presented in The Empathy Gap demonstrates. 

The primary purpose of this book is to complement the case presented in The Empathy Gap by presenting a host of specific issues which illustrate the reality, and sometimes the origin, of the gender empathy gap and the resulting male disadvantages.

One issue I perhaps failed to make sufficiently clear in the previous book I now emphasise: none of my writings or talks are intended to make a play for men in the victimhood Olympics. I abhor with every fibre of my being the spurious leveraging of victimhood to gain social advantage. Seeking victimhood is a profoundly false and deeply unethical behaviour which has played a large part in the destruction of our society. In any case, you would need to have failed to appreciate the foundational thesis of my books, namely the empathy gap itself, to think that claims of victimhood could be advantageous for men. The empathy gap precludes the very possibility. That is rather the point. Victimhood works only where there is an antecedent condition of empathy to exploit and plunder.

What, then, is the purpose of highlighting the male disadvantages? The purpose is to bring this reality into collision with the approved narrative, and thereby to attempt to convince the reader that the empathy gap is real. What would follow from that revelatory experience is that the approved narrative, including feminism, is actually just an epiphenomenon of the empathy gap. Rather than being empirically based, the approved/feminist narrative is a psychosocial product of the empathy gap (or gamma bias or gynocentrism, if you prefer).

I also wish to emphasise that I have not personally suffered any of the male disadvantages about which I have written so much. I am one of the lucky ones. To my mind this strengthens my position as any detractors wishing to discredit my perspective by claiming that I am a hurt man with a chip on my shoulder simply have no grounds for doing so.

A Guide to the Contents

The articles are not presented in chronological order. Rather the book is structured in 13 sections according to topic. By this means, articles originally published many years apart are brought together in a (hopefully) coherent whole. 

It seems appropriate to start the book, and the section on justice, with a review of the law of coverture. This is a subject much beloved of feminists as, in their interpretation, coverture provided the quintessential manifestation of oppressive patriarchy in the legal arena. As usual, however, the full truth is not that.

The Corston Report (chapter two) was the first time I realised just how fraudulent were feminist claims of a desire for equality. It also served as a vehicle for my first crushing realisation that many women, perhaps most women, and not merely self-identified feminists, agreed wholeheartedly with its sexist insistence that women be treated far more leniently than men. And most men agreed. In short, I learnt the reality of gynocentrism.

The remaining chapters in this opening section on “broken justice” are snapshots of the concerted drive to destroy relations between the sexes via the use of lawfare, aided by well-placed feminist activists and professionals. All the resulting changes to legislation and associated practices have been on a one-way ratchet in the direction of fatherlessness and declining birth rate.

The second section on sexual assault starts with my 2018 review of false allegations in the UK. This review serves to demonstrate how trivial are many women’s motivations for making allegations which would utterly destroy a man, and, in many cases, this is serial behaviour by the accusing women. The associated miscarriages of justice often result from disclosure failures. This generic failure of the criminal justice process was subject to severe censure by the Justice Select Committee in 2018, whose report stated clearly the attitudes and procedures which the police must adopt – alas, to no avail. The intentions of the Crown Prosecution Service to continue to not just allow but actively to promote a biased approach to sexual offence cases is made explicit in Operation Soteria (chapter 17).

It does not matter how many times I emphasise that a focus in my writings on harms to men does not mean I am denying that bad things – including serious sexual offences and domestic abuse – also happen to women. It does not matter how often I make this statement, there are those who will not – apparently cannot – see books such as this as other than such a denial. This results from the moral infantilism which is now rampant in our culture and which, with some irony, is only able to see issues in binary, black or white, terms.

The third section addresses illustrative cases of the perennially distorted picture of domestic abuse to which the public is subjected, culminating in the culture-wide damage this is doing to our children.

Section four illustrates how boys are treated more harshly than girls, and in non-Western cultures whose designation as “patriarchal” deflects attention from this reality. The focus is again on boys in section five on education in the UK which contrasts the diminishing educational attainment of boys with professional and political attitudes to it. Our culture is one in which an education professional can dismiss any need to address this issue with an insouciant “girls are just cleverer” (chapter 30).

Section six gives some illustrations of the falsity of the feminist conception of “equality”. Much of this is older material which I now almost feel no longer needs saying – but unfortunately it does. If you want to wind me up, just mention the WASPIs. Entitlement? Off the scale. Chapter 34 is one of my few forays into the abortion issue, and the hardening of my previously rather liberal opinion.

There is no situation which feminists will fail to use to aggrandise women and castigate men, as section seven demonstrates in the context of the covid period. I also include here, with a considerable level of quantitative detail, the impact on primary healthcare of the majority of General Practitioners now being women. This is followed in section eight with a miscellany of the types of feminist propaganda in which our culture is marinaded.

Section nine is more scientific in tone, with much on the evolutionary origins of our gendered outlook, culminating in a deconstruction of the egregiously misleading Implicit Association Test. Section 10 looks at some of the results of half a century of feminism in respect of the wedge driven between the sexes – as implemented mainly by the vilification of men. In respect of “reactionary feminism” (chapter 52) I really don’t care what adjectival rider is prepended to “feminism”, it remains too poisonous a term to be applied to oneself for anyone who has acknowledged what destruction feminism has wrought.

Section 11 sees me enjoying myself, talking about books and their authors. I wonder what Henry James (chapter 60) would have made of The Power (chapter 61). Section 12 concedes that the culture “war” (i.e., slaughter) was lost, though that should not discourage dissidents from continuing to pour scorn on the brave new culture and all its works.

The final section broadens the subject matter to more general politics and introduces my concept of moral usurpation, which I offer as the psychological basis of the collectivist new culture. These closing two chapters are an introduction to my earlier book, The Destructivists, and also add something to it, especially as regards ESG (Environmental, Social and Governance, the corporate index). The last chapter has been extended from the original blog post in respect of ESG, specifically to illustrate how the pressures on financial institutions to conform are enacted coercively from the top down, that is, from the UN down through national legislatures.

My final point is the most important. Despite the reception that work such as this will receive in most quarters now, its purpose is not to advance the cause of the male identity group. That would be deepening the already serious divide in our society. Its purpose is to discredit the identity group perspective entirely by showing how its weaponisation has wrought destruction upon us by creation of fatal division. If there is to be any hope that the growing authoritarianism alluded to in the last two chapters may be avoided, then healing of these divisions is the only means by which this could be achieved. But this cannot come about before the truth of the issues discussed herein is acknowledged. Finally, I emphasise again that my focus on issues affecting men and boys is to redress the imbalance that these are generally neglected, not to pretend that women and girls do not have their own issues.