Are We Talking About Men So We Can Ignore Race

One of the most persistent narratives of the Great Recession has been the so-called "end of men" -- that is, the ebbing of men's historical dominance over the world of work. Many have noted that this dominance hasn't actually ebbed very far, but the narrative continues -- last week, a report featured in The New York Times blamed the problem on single moms. But the "end of men" story line ignores the fact that the recession has produced much bigger disparities between black and white Americans than between men and women.
This story line may be popular not because it's accurate, but because it plays into media biases. It lets us focus on a group that's been historically powerful -- men, especially white men -- at the expense of people who had less economic power before the recession and suffered even more seriously during it.