MGTOW Building Wealth and Power For Single Men
Reviewed By: Avraham Azrieli
Avraham Azrieli's most recent novel is "Deborah Rising" (HarperColllins 2016), the story of the first woman to lead a nation in history.

MGTOW Building Wealth and Power For Single Men by Tim Patten transcends genres in combining a social study (of men’s declining place in a world preoccupied by spearheading women), motivational advice (male empowerment, masculinity, and creativity, especially for single men), and how to guidance (for securing financial strength and personal happiness).

While this book may not be the male opposite for Betty Friedan’s The Feminine Mystique, it is no less confrontational, insightful, and fearless. Perhaps Mary Wollstonecraft’s A Vindication of the Rights of Woman would be a closer comparison, all things being equal (which they clearly aren’t). But in terms of its ambitious scope and take-no-prisoners attitude, this book could unsafely and provocatively be compared to Gloria Steinem’s Moving Beyond Words: Age, Rage, Sex, Power, Money, Muscles: Breaking the Boundaries of Gender.

The book begins by asking the first question that comes to mind—What is MGTOW?—and answering it in a way that’s worth quoting here in full as it sets the tone for the whole book: “Men Going Their Own Way (MGTOW) is a fast growing, worldwide phenomenon based on a philosophy which can be used by a man for gaining control over his own personal freedom and future. It has been referred to as the modern men’s liberation movement, delivering men as a gender from subjugation. MGTOW is a lifestyle that frees men from patriarchal traditions regarding expectations for dating, living entanglements and marriage. It liberates men from a life of tiresome labor, waste of personal resources and costly emotional exhaustion often devoted to toxic mates, girlfriends or wives. … MGTOW is sometimes referred to as “Taking the Red Pill.” Just as in The Matrix, the Red Pill enables those who swallow it to see the surprising reality behind conventional living together and the false ideology of marriage.” The book aims to help men survive in today’s “Gynocentric society … which exalts women’s physical, financial and emotional needs over all others.” More specifically, MGTOW advocates for man to shun entanglements, marriage and co-habitation, live life on his own terms, reject the role of provider or protector, avoid the costs of raising children, and defy society’s ‘shaming techniques and slogans.’

Author Tim Patten (Roller Babes: 1950s Women of Roller Derby (2015) and other books) wisely avoids the pitfalls of appearing hostile or hateful, which characterizes many books focused on women liberation and feminism. To the contrary: this book aspires to deliver a message that’s unabashedly controversial, or maybe even scandalous for some, but not hateful to women (even if it is plenty critical of them), not anti amorous or sexual relationships (as long as they don’t rise to entanglements), and not anti-social, fatalistic, or whinny.

In addition, unlike many of the books on the ‘opposite side,’ this book is filled with humor that even some women might find funny. (“After centuries of enslavement, we are angry as hell! We will not take it anymore! A tsunami of male sovereignty is sweeping across the planet…”) Women will also appreciate the book’s condemning of society’s forced gender roles and stereotyping, which the author calls “gender policing.”

The book’s theme is nicely set up with a discussion of the history of human history and gender roles in antiquity, and how these roles evolved into what they are today. It acknowledges the necessities born of nature’s call of procreation, yet decries some of the negative consequences and setbacks that have become the modern male’s fate. It discusses the various manifestations of masculinity and aspects of its decline. It outlines ways for men to grow, heal and strengthen mentally, physically, and financially, supplementing the discussions with useful ‘tools’ for practical implementation. (Example: “MGTOW character tool number three: Nurture your dreams and live them the best way you can. Walt Disney said, “If you can dream it, you can do it.” Remember, your dreams are an inner power.”) And, in a chapter titled, “The Girl Who Cried Rape,” the author utilizes fiction-writing tools to effectively dramatize the very complex issue of sexual consent and credibility against the preconceived notions of male aggression and female victimhood. The latter part of the book provides extensive discussion and comprehensive advice on all aspects of financial prudence and success. In fact, those chapters would be incredibly helpful to any reader, whether or not he (or she) agrees with the MGTOW credo. And, last but not least, the book concludes with a chapter titled “Nickolas Gets Lucky” that again uses the author’s excellent fiction-writing skills to dramatize a smitten young man’s budding relationship, its sexual and emotional arc, and the lessons to be learned.

In summary, “MGTOW Building Wealth and Power For Single Men” by Tim Patten is a concise yet thorough book that daringly delves into the current state of men in modern society and offers a controversial yet well reasoned path to survive and thrive as a single man. The author successfully incorporates his personal experiences, vast knowledge, and gift for clear explanation of complex issues, delivering highly readable and easily accessible guidance. This is an intriguing book that charts new grounds, provides a wealth of ideas and tools, and would undoubtedly stimulate a lively discussion among both men and women. Highly recommended!