The Professor in the Cage: Why Men Fight and Why We Like to Watch

The Professor in the Cage Why Men Fight and Why We Like to Watch NA

  • Title: The Professor in the Cage: Why Men Fight and Why We Like to Watch
  • Author: Jonathan Gottschall
  • ISBN: 9781594205637
  • Page: 467
  • Format: Hardcover
  • NA

    One thought on “The Professor in the Cage: Why Men Fight and Why We Like to Watch”

    1. This book was a dried poodle turd. It could've been good, but the guy drones on and on about masculinity and science. I just wanted to hear about your training, bro. If I wanted to read a science book, I wouldn't read one written by an adjunct English comp teacher. I'd read one written by a scientist. See how that works?

    2. The Professor, Jonathan Gottschall, asks why men like to fight, and in this book he is talking about fighting for sport, or for fun, not war or other life and death battles. While I don't quite get why men like to box or cage fight, I do get that competition is fun and that it's an extreme form of competition. Not that mysterious. But I am perplexed at the enjoyment seemingly civilized people seem to get from watching others batter each other to a bloody pulp. Although we are in a relatively pea [...]

    3. Animals fight; humans fight, too. Women fight; men fight, too. But men are more likely to fight physically and frequently. Some might say men are just asinine in so doing and men ought to be civilized. Jonathan Gotschall, an English professor, argues that men are the way they are owing to many reasons. Better yet, he places himself in the middle of fights to find out why men fight even if death might result. Gottschall had been a wimp, not being able to stand up for himself all his life. He deci [...]

    4. I can't even. This book is full of pseudoscience and gender stereotypes. Gottschall takes actual science and facts, relies only on nature arguments, discards nurture arguments, then he takes these facts and submerges them in a mixture of good ol' boys and wanna be a real fighter so bads. For example in one scene his daughter goes inside with his wife and tells him he can't come in and bake cookies (presumably because he is a man). He then waxes on about how men are always on the outside of the f [...]

    5. The premise is strong, unfortunately this book soon devolves into a Jordan Peterson-esque smorgasbord of soft science and half-baked philosophy. I think this idea would've worked better as a long personal essay, because as a full-length book it demands a rigorous approach to the many topics the author glides through. Or perhaps a series of essays as there are many disparate concepts in this book that are barely held together with a shallow thesis of reductive biopolitics Yes, people enjoy violen [...]

    6. This is, despite the author's claims, a book about a midlife crisis. But, rather than the tedious routine midlife crisis of divorce, red sports car, and much younger girlfriend, Gottschall (an associate professor in English at a small liberal arts college) decides to take up MMA cage fighting. He's in his late 30's, and claims that deep down he thought it might be a good way to get fired, so that he can move on to something else.You might conclude from this that Gottschall is kind of a jock, who [...]

    7. “The Professor In The Cage: Why Men Fight And Why We Like To Watch” by Jonathan Gottschall is a fascinating look at fighting and violence through the eyes of a college professor who not only researching fighting and violence, but joined a MMA gym to train and actually enter the arena to fight. It is well written, eye opening, and an enjoyable read for anyone interested in why men fight and why so many enjoy watching.Gottschall chronicles his own journey, including his apprehensions and fears [...]

    8. Bills itself as analysis of make violence but instead is an apology for the same, a repetitive scree about how gender is actually innate (with no evidence btw) and no interrogation of the homophobia he learned during childhood games of smear the queer. There is no scholarship here, just sad, thin memoir. Penguin press and Washington & Jefferson College, his employer, should be ashamed.

    9. Check out my free summaries at camsreadsElevator Pitch: The Professor in the Cage takes a fascinating look at the historical connection between the civilized violence we express today and it’s origins. If you thought that we are any different from ancient societies you are wrong, we just package it and make it prettier.Read Time: 5 minutesLets begin with this Jonathan Gottschall is hands down one of my favorite storytellers to read. He makes nonfiction and self development feel like a great no [...]

    10. Well researched and very enthralling. Insightful and entertaing. Gottschall spends a lot of time explaining what most conservative, blue collar males already know. so its interesting to see the journey of change he goes through by the end of his book. I really enjoyed the dismantling of martial arts and the subsequent anecdote that follows. All in all, the book, although monotonous at times, was enjoyable and not disagreeable. Give it a read if youre in the mood for male gender study.

    11. As an ageing middle aged man who'd rather be home reading and who has never been in a fistfight, I felt an immediate kinship with this author. One of the more interesting questions he raises is how much of being a "man" is putting yourself at risk for physical confrontation? If you have never been properly kicked, stomped, or punched in the face, are you missing a vital part of something? This in part what lead the author, a 39 year old literature professor, to start training in mixed martial ar [...]

    12. I bought this book for largely the same reason that the author wrote it: to over-intellectualize the primal side of humanity, and spend some time in its realm.Not only does Gottschall step up and fully immerse himself in mixed martial arts, he also uses his skills as a professor and writer to provide the background for what he calls "the monkey dance", to try to impose some kind of order onto the dark chaos of violence and conflict. The results are stimulating, viscerally and cognitively.This bo [...]

    13. This book is not a fight manual or narration of a fighter's journey. It is an exploration and discussion of why men like to fight, compete, and why we invest so much time, money and energy in competitive pursuits such as combat sports. It discusses the differences between men and woman, how sport is the modern version of ritualised combat/duelling, and how society and culture have changed over time with regards to ritualised combat.I enjoyed the book a lot. It may not have convinced me on every [...]

    14. I started this book hoping to read about the author's experience trying MMA and learning about fighting. Unfortunately, this is only covered briefly in the first and last couple of pages. The book focuses on the history of fighting and why men like it. I was rather disappointed by this, as the basic explanation given is that men have always enjoyed fighting, and women not so much. Still a decent read for MMA fans, but keep expectations low.

    15. This book captivated my attention in the “Preface” when Jonathan Gottschall confessed that he was working as a “lowly adjunct making $16,000 per year teaching composition to freshmen who couldn’t care less” in his late thirties (3). When I saw the blurbs and cover in the catalog, I had assumed that this will be a straight-forward history and sociological study of the phenomenon of humans fighting. When I started reading the “Preface,” I could immediately tell that it was written in [...]

    16. A fascinating look at the darkness within so many men and how it's kept at bay. Gottschall's observations on the fascination men have with violence and their relationship with it (shame, love, disgust) are worth a read. It falls short of five stars because I feel at times it can drag on. In addition, it feels like there's something missing that I can't quite place. It's good, but it doesn't quite reach great.

    17. I'm someone that has what most people would consider totally insane views regarding sustainability and environmentalism so glorifying and supporting athletes who consume 6,000-8,000 calories per day and a couple hundred grams of protein (enough for several people), who rely on routine surgeries and expensive physical therapies to stay functional, and who make millions of dollars that they spend on sports cars and mansions and shit all because they have the ambition to be the best at something th [...]

    18. I would say this part memoir, part a social understanding of male violence, and part him making fun of his colleagues because he was an English Adjunct Professor. It was interesting read because it covered some interesting aspects of how violence is transmitted socially but I thought Demonic Males was a better read for that.

    19. Read this for my book group and had a great discussion. I have three sons who like to fight and to watch fighting, which I don't understand. Gottschall gives some ideas and possible explanations that I found very interesting. My daughter listened to the audible book and LOVED the narrator.

    20. Interesting for understanding the men who have the same opinions as the author about fighting an violence, men vs women, but that’s about it. A bit too simplistic and too much pseudo-science for me.

    21. All sports bear the unnecessary weight of superstition, but mixed martial arts (MMA) moreso than any other. Partly this is owed to ‘the warfare analogue‘, native to every competitive exercise, being much less figurative—the loser of a fight experiencing, in as many cases as not, an end or preface to an end more approximate (and in closer proximity) to that of one’s life. Mostly, however, it is because martial arts are surpassingly the hard kernel of real-world, bona fide superstitions: s [...]

    22. Awesome read! Engaging from beginning to end, a raw and honest book for those looking to understand the roots of human violence and the appeal of martial arts. Got me even more into my Bjj training.

    23. In December 2015, The Art of Manliness , one of my favourite websites for members of the opposite sex, published an article The 15 Best Books Read by the AoM Team in 2015. I went through the list and spotted The Professor in the Cage: Why Men Fight and Why We Like to Watch by Jonathan Gottschall. A short description by the AOM team reads:Jonathan Gottschall was an associate professor of English whose career had stalled in mid-life. Then one day he looked out his office window, saw an MMA gym acr [...]

    24. Sociology written in a light way and mixed with real-life experiences and humor. Written by a professor who (finally!) doesn't take himself too seriously. He completes his research by comparing with women, which (reflecting on my years in school) was very educational. Interesting Quotes"It made me really get - in a way that just watching fights can't - that the main object of fighting sports is to temporarily shut down the other guy's brain. Head punches hurt what they are designed to hurt: not [...]

    25. I tried really hard to get into this book. I just couldn't. There was just nothing really to it. I ordered the book after Gottschall's appearance on Joe Rogan's podcast. While listening to him speak about his book, I felt the idea of his project was so smart and original. I thought it had so much potential. I, too, contemplate joining a mixed martial arts gym. I thought this could help me move closer to that. I hoped for an candid journey of a civilized white suburban male diving into this forei [...]

    26. After reading Nell Bernstein's well researched but dry, "Burning Down the House," I was worried that Jonathan Gottschall's personal experiment on men and violence would read the same.How wrong I was! I hope that Bernstein's next effort takes some pointers from Gottschall's style (or others like him) on how to write non-fiction that really draws you in.Feeling defeated by his weight and lack of general "manliness," Gottschall decides he's going to learn to be a cage fighter. Since he's also an ac [...]

    27. “In short, I set out to write a book about the darkness in men, but I ended up with a book about how men keep the darkness in check.”I have a problem with violence.The problem is that I like it.I like watching it. MMA is the only sport I watch any more and I rate action movies on their fight scenes. I like reading about it. Martial arts manuals and websites that break down fights are some of my favourite reading material. And I love training in how to be better at violence. Grappling and try [...]

    28. Following ' rubric, I "really liked" this book.I was drawn in by the title and the blurb on the back, which suggested an academic training to fight in his first MMA match. Happily, the book ended up being something I am even more interested in reading, the history of fighting and the psychological motivations of ritual violence.Luckily for Gottschall, one of his early chapters is about the history of dueling, and he covers a couple famous duels that any recent musical fans will have heard of rep [...]

    29. Pretty great book. I am not sure what some people where thinking when they picked this up but luckily I listen to the Joe Rogan Podcast and had a clear idea from the show he did with Jonathan what the book would be about and damn was it exciting. I can't say this was an amazing book but it had heart and got me pumped to fight people. ha in a sporting fashion not just in the streets randomly. the book had for me a good amount of science and history to back up the auto biographical side of Jonath [...]

    30. As essential reading Oates' "On Boxing" is to that sport, Gottschall's "Professor in the Cage" is to MMA.Thoughtful, honest, and surprising, Gottschall (like Oates) also knows how to turn a phrase, and regularly captures the sense and truth of MMA fighting.Part MMA training "road trip" novel (he recounts his journey, as an English professor, to train for and take up his first cage fight), part reflection on MMA as a sport and what draws men (in particular) as both practitioners and fans to it, t [...]

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