Louise Perry: The Case Against the Sexual Revolution

Trigger warning: This episode contains discussion around sex and sexuality, sexual assault, rape and consent.

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Louise Perry is a journalist and author based in London. She is a columnist for UnHerd and the director of The Other Half, a new non-partisan feminist think tank, and the host of Maiden Mother Matriarch, a podcast about sexual politics. Last year, Louise released her first book ‘A Case Against The Sexual Revolution’ and in this episode we break down the arguments and ideas of each chapter. The conversation does cover some pretty controversial topics so it’s worth remembering that, as with all the other Deep Dive episodes, we recommend you take what you hear with a pinch of salt, listen to what works for other people and take away the points that resonate with you most.

00:00 Intro
01:30 The response to your book
02:52 Liberal, radical and sex positive feminism
10:07 Your chapter titles
11:45 Ch1 – ‘Sex must be taken seriously’
12:50 Sexual disenchantment
28:15 Louise’s findings on sex work
34:27 Ch2 – ‘Men and women are different’
38:10 Why does on average matter?
42:09 Luxury beliefs
47:10 Psychological differences
52:11 Sociosexuality
01:01:55 Sexual disgust threshold (the ick)
01:08:30 Sexual modes and cheating
01:13:29 Dating apps
01:22:13 Hookup culture
01:29:43 Rape, sexual assault and consent
01:45:00 Prevention vs prosecution
01:50:06 Reactions to your final chapter
02:09:14 Your list of 4 questions


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Problem I think is when having sex like A man is seen as a default setting Because it doesn't suit the interests of Most women if we're saying that Something that suits the interests of Let's say five percent of women should Be the norm that inevitably is going to Mean that 95 percent are nudged by Shame By social pressure now this episode is a Little bit different from our usual Programming because this is an interview Between me and Louise Perry who's the Author of the book the case against the Sexual Revolution the book in general is Intended as a critique of liberal Feminism and sometimes criticized by Conservatives and Christians for not Being conservative and Christian enough Now before we roll the interview it's Worth sharing a bit of a trigger warning Around this in that we do discuss topics Around sex and sexuality in a pretty Graphic way and we also talk about Issues including sexual assault and rape And consent and so hopefully that's fair Warning if you'd rather not listen to This episode I work for a campaign group Called we can't consent to this what we Do is we document cases where UK women Have been killed and their Killers have Claimed in court that they consented to The violence which led to their deaths So like the sex game gone wrong I think That the focus on consent as the sole

Framework for determining whether or not Sexual behavior is good or bad this is Completely inadequate there's so much Gray area between good sex and Consensual sex at the moment according To the YouTube analytics 81 of you who Are watching this on YouTube have not Yet hit the Subscribe button and so if You're for example in the now 81 of People who are watching this on YouTube But who are not subscribed to the Channel I would love it if you could do So and would be awesome to get that Number down to 50 and it would be cool To get like 50 50 sub non-sub ratio just Just for fun all right Louise thank you So much for coming on the show thank you For having me hello this is a very Interesting book the case against sexual Revolution a new Guide to Sex in the 21st century how has it been doing I Guess the the media and publicity tour Of the book because it's I guess a Particularly sometimes controversial Topic yeah it's been better than I Thought you know You while I was writing it Virtual Um that was kind of the idea but I would Say the response has been 90 to 95 Positive okay which was much higher than I thought what's the five to ten percent Like like what what what sort of what's Interesting is that it comes from every

Possible angle which I think I mean I think suggests I'm at least Being original even if I'm not right so I mean so the book in general is a is is Intended as a critique of liberal Feminism so obviously liberal feminists You know reiterate their point fine that Was that's to be expected I'm sometimes Criticized by Um conservatives and Christians for not Being conservative and Christian enough Okay because I have a chapter in there That makes the case for marriage but Then I also have a whole bunch of other Chapters that they don't like as much I have been criticized by Um radical feminists and some other Feminists for being too keen on Evolutionary psychology so completely Different groups or have a problem with The book which I think is probably a Good sign yeah so Um up until I read this I did not really Realize that like uh liberal feminists And like radical feminists and sex Positive and negative feminine was was Like a thing yeah um what do these kind Of terms mean what's extra confusing is Everyone calls themselves different Things feminism is like an infamously Factional movement Um I write about liberal feminism in the Books the term I chose to use even Though people wouldn't fully be more

Likely to describe themselves as Intersectional feminists I mean liberal Feminism is basically the feminism of Like Cosmo Emma Watson okay it's what You'll you'll most commonly come across In the guardian okay it's it's like it's Like the mainstream position nowadays The main idea about liberal feminism is Basically that giving women freedom and Giving women choice is the most Important thing And that the what was wrong about the Past the pre-feminine stage was that Women didn't have their choices Constrained And post 1960s we've seen this sort of Explosion of freedom and that's a great Thing Which I disagree with radical feminism Is a it's faded away a little bit it was More prominent in the 70s and 80s and That is Um As the name suggest more radical version Of feminism which says that Um Women are an oppressed class like it's Like it's like a Marxist framework where Women and men are different classes and Men necessarily oppress Women I used to be much more sympathetic to Radical feminism I've moved away from it Somewhat

Um but yeah these are these are factions Who are at each other's throats okay a Lot I'm happy for a long time a sex Positive and sex negative like what is How does that time so sex positive Liberal feminist I think are pretty much Always sex positive and what does sex Positive mean so the the kind of Steel Man of sex positivism is is it's the Idea that there's nothing Inherently shameful about sex that a lot Of particularly Christian ideas about Sex are very oppressive and they they You know they make people miserable Um and that actually take having a kind Of generally positive regard towards sex And saying that look as long as you can Sense as long as people are all Adults or whatever then what's the Problem yeah I think the problem with The sex positive view is it Shades very Very easily from that General we should Be generally positive towards it sounds Lovely the problem is that it Shades Very easily into actually being into These things actually becoming almost Compulsory So that we we go from saying women Should be allowed to have one night Stands there's nothing wrong necessarily With having one night stands fine I Think that anyone who's brought up in a Vaguely liberal environment is going to Agree with that but then I think that

The the point that we've come to now is That actually not having one night Sounds is weird Going through a period of your life Having one night stands as a route Towards a monogamous relationship which Is what most women say they want what Most men actually also say they want Eventually Is almost like running the gauntlet and I think that what sex positive feminism Does in practice even if not in theory Is it provides Provides cover for a culture that is Actually very coercive Because we are all networked individuals We all make choices in context but Influenced by other people and I think Particularly when it comes to sex Because sex necessarily is something you Do with other people so you're going to Be influenced by everyone else and I Think to say that to focus only on the Individual yeah and to think only about Our own choices in isolation And the idea that we should you know Regard all those choices positively I think massively neglects the ways in Which our choices are constrained in Practice what do you mean by the ways in Which our choices are constrained in Practice So one example would be if you Pre the pill right the standard route

For young women particularly if you come From Kind of respectable background let's say Is not to have sex poor marriage that's The default you know and it means if you You talk to women who grew up in that Era they'll say you know yes of course There were instances where that didn't Happen teenagers being as they are But equally it was it was the assumed Thing and if you you know when I was Late with a boy or whatever he knew that That was he knew that was a hard limit You didn't have to negotiate on it Whereas now I'd say that that has Flipped and now the assumption is that You're put out Not necessarily on a first day although Increasingly you know straight away And and the default therefore becomes a Yes Okay and that's the site at which you Have to negotiate and often you know It's very difficult because you're doing That within the context of you don't Want to refrigerator you don't want to Be approved you don't want to lose Social status And so I think to say that you have a Choice yeah you do of course we'll have Choices we'll have free will But if you're in a culture that says That putting out on a first day is Normal

Teenagers in particular care a lot about Being normal and that is the site which Our choices are constrained So so it sounds like Yeah so I mean and please correct me if This is not a fair summary of um of your Position but it sounds like you're Saying that in an absolutely dream world Of course We would have uh we would have we Wouldn't be using the uh the weapon of Shame against uh women or men or anyone To constrain their behavior and people Will do what they want in a consensual Fashion and everything is all fine and Dandy because actually people are as you Know uh Ayla was saying in the debate You had with her checking in with Themselves in isolation and saying how Do I personally feel about this there Are some women who will enjoy having sex With multiple partners some women who Won't and everything all goes because Society is non-judgmental it sounds like You're saying in the real world those Kind of that that kind of dream world Doesn't really exist not only that but I Think the war on shame is a complete Dead end okay I think I mean not just in Relation to sex and relationship Everything of course we shame is Basically the term we use to describe Any means of social control that isn't Actually implemented through laws and

Police and whatever right yeah Um we are shamed for being dishonest We're ashamed for you know there are all Sorts of things that we're ashamed about We don't necessarily use that term Because it is very loaded but I don't Know the shame that people feel about Being raised there's a new a newer form Of Shame and a good form of Shame you Should feel ashamed of being racist you Know so I think that the idea of doing Away with shame entirely is not only Impossible but also I think bad The the question though is what we Should be attaching shame to and I agree With Ayla when she says that we should Um You know women should be allowed to to If if women really sincerely like Behaving as men have historically Behaved you know having sex like a man Is the phrase I use in the book fine I Completely agree the problem I think is When having sex like a man is seen as an Ideal and as seen as a as a default Setting because it doesn't suit the Interests of most women if we're saying That something that suits the interests Of let's say five percent of women Should be the norm that inevitably is Going to mean that 95 are nudged by Shame by social pressure One of the early chaps so it was it was Kind of funny when when I first got

Introduced to your book um because I Have this other podcast that I do with My brother uh and we just sort of treat It as a bit of a chit chat and he came Across your book a few months ago this Was just before I DMD on Twitter and we Just sort of read their chapter titles Sex must be taken seriously chapter two Men and women are different chapter Three some desires are bad chapter four Loveless sex is not empowering consent Is not enough violence is not love People are not products and marriage is Good and then the conclusion listen to Your mother it was just like kind of Funny because immediately we knew that Wow this is it's it's really clever in That some people are going to think it's Like oh my God this is you're this is Like hate crime and some people are Going to think this is totally Reasonable wisely why do you need to Write a book about it yeah um how did Yeah how did how did the naming of the Chapters come about it actually went a Couple of months before the book was Published in the UK it's not out yet in America it will be in a few weeks Um the contents page the publisher just Uploaded the contents page and the cover To the side no other no other details And it provoked a minor Twitter storm Well quite a major drift still I'm Actually lasting several days because of

Exactly this because some people looked At those chapter titles and thought this Woman is a fascist right and then other People said hang on what am I missing Here and that exact kind of Clash of Opinion yeah was uh explosive it's it's Interesting just kind of reading through These because having having read the Book now I could I can sort of trace the Logic of your argument through just the Chapter headings which is kind of nice So I wonder if we can start with sex Must be taken seriously I guess when I First read that chapter it reminded me Of a thing that I was Thinking and saying in conversations at University when like all of my friends All my female friends would have Identified as intersectional feminists Um this was sort of 2014 2015 era and There was a lot of stuff going on that Oh Feminism or sort of white feminism is Bad because it doesn't take into account Like uh race and class and uh the trans Debate hadn't quite caught on back in 2014 but now I'm sure intersectional Feminists would include the trans stuff As part of the thing but putting all That aside Um the way I was thinking about Sort of sex from a I guess ethical moral Philosophical standpoint was the phrase Having sex should be just as you know

Just the same as playing squash with Someone you wouldn't bat an eyelid if You're playing squash at someone as long As both parties are consenting and it's Mutual then hey anything goes why are we All making a big fuss about the sex Thing religion is a little bit backwards Because like come on guys sex is just Like playing squash Um and your first chapter sex must be Taken seriously you talk about this idea Of sexual disenchantment and I wonder Like what's what's going on there so I've borrowed the secretary's Enchantment phrase from um an American Writer called Aaron savarium who Borrowed it from Max Weber Who described the process of Disenchantment during the Enlightenment Whereby people used to believe that Nature was filled with you know Spirit Agency and then posts Scientific Revolution we we come to believe that Actually it's all just kind of Scientific forces and there's no there's No there's no specialness there's no Sacredness it's just kind of like blunt Physical forces kind of clashing Together and sex resistant Shaman is Sort of the same thing it comes out in The 1960s and it's the idea that sexy Used to have a sec a sacred status I Mean in all religious Traditions pretty Much sex has some sort of special

Significance as some ritual associated With it in Christian tradition uh sex Has to take place within marriage which Is a Sacrament and then that all falls Away And now the idea is exactly as you say That sex shouldn't it can have special Meaning if people want to give it Special meaning power to them but in the Bare Bones it really is just like Playing squash with someone shaking Someone's hand making coffee whatever Kind of neutral social interaction you Want to describe I think there are two Problems with the sexual disenchantment Idea the first is that it's nonsense no One actually behaves as if that were True right like people don't care if Their Partners go and play squash with Someone else people care deeply if their Partners have sex with someone else and Even when they're trying really hard not To feel that way it's a very common Occurrence in the polyamorous Community Or you know any like poly Platform you want to go to online you'll Find people who are desperately Struggling with jealousy so this is even When it's not just a case of breaking The contract of the marriage exactly It's an easy defense yeah exactly it's Not that your partner is being deceitful Or anything like that it's just that you Have this deep visceral response to your

Partner having sex with someone else in A way that of course you would not have To any of these other kind of neutrals So in my relationship contract if I if I If I happen to have a clause saying that You know we're only going to play squash With one another and then my girlfriend Plays squash with someone else the fact That yes it's a Breaking of the con I Wouldn't feel as bad about clearly a Stipulation yeah you know yeah it Clearly has a different kind of Emotional resonance doesn't it yeah yeah People don't behave as if sexually Disenchantment was true similarly if Your boss asks you to do something That's not in your job description right If you're asked to I don't know make Them coffee is the example I give in the Book or you're asked to do overtime or You're asked to do you know something That's not like strictly listed within Your your duties fine that's normal like We I think we've all had experiences Like that if your boss asks you to give Him a [ __ ] that's completely Different everyone knows that's Completely different and the feminists Who who are loudest and insisting that Sex can be just like playing squash are The first to say that of course your Boss shouldn't be asking you to give him A [ __ ] right because we know that Actually this isn't like a neutral there

Is something there is something special We know we might not want to use West Sacred but there is something special About sex which means that people just Have a wholly different emotional Response to it so on that front um you Know if we compare like a boss asking You to work overtime versus boss asking You to give him a [ __ ] clearly those Things are very very very different yeah What would the Steel Man uh feminist say In this situation if they weren't trying To use sacredness and specialness of sex As a reason as to why this feels Different so they might say that um There's a kind of imbalance between men And women Um which means that there's a power Dynamic at play Which makes that request more kind of Charged okay than it would be Um then some other interaction would be I guess in I I guess they might compare It to something like the imbalance Between someone who's rich and someone's Poor and the sort of inherent tension Based on that power differential Differential Um You can't really apply that to two men If a male boss asks his male Junior Employees give him a [ __ ] that's also Really bad yeah okay so what would I Think that was a part on that basis

I think the problem is just that it's Very difficult to rationalize it's it's Not something you can kind of easily Line up in a logical argument but the Fact is people feel differently about Sex and they do about other things and As far as we can tell people have always Felt that way And that's just a that's just like a Component of human life that we have to Reckon with and I think the problem We're trying to explain it away and say Oh with this you know whatever people Have these deep riskeral feelings but They are somehow wrong too is that I Think that down the line that's really Bad for women and I think it's bad for Everyone but I think it's particularly Bad for women because Um If you don't think that sex has a Special status it's very hard to explain Why rape would have a special status Why would it have a special status aside From theft you know or some other kind Of neutral Yeah I mean you might say that it's it's More like violating a bodily autonomy Than something like theft is But I guess if you wouldn't compare it To I don't know getting stabbed or Something like it it just And so are when you when you first said The [ __ ] thing on Chris Williamson's

Podcast so he's a friend of mine um I was I found myself Trying to run circles around my own Brain to figure out like there's got to Be a reason why this thing is bad other Than saying oh because sex is just Special like because that feels like A is such an obvious answer but also Feels like the answer that I I'm almost Loathed to concede that point that like There must be like power dynamics oh but I think because it runs very counter to Um the liberal Paradigm which is all About Um rationalizing human behavior But it's it's often been observed that Um radical feminists so that's Feministic come out of the second wave And tend to have this kind of marxist Analysis of the relationships between Men and women reach many of the same Conclusions as Catholics and some other Religious groups who the Catholics in Particular Catholics they oppose Um prostitution porn sorry to see you Know whatever you want to pick like they Are they are often in agreement although Not entirely with radical feminism and I've often had Um Uh academics and other Um analysts think asking why that would Be like what possible why would radical Feminists have anything in common with

Catholics And it's often used against radical Feminists as well as kind of a Suggestion that they're somehow like Secretly completely conservative I think The reason that they reach the same Conclusion actually Is not because they are unusual it's Because the liberal Secular alternative is unusual In that they they recognize the Specialness of sex They agree that for whatever reason People have this very very strong Instinct of you sex is special in the Same way that we have a very strong Instinct to like love our children or Any other manner of slightly strange Irrational response right Um it's just a given this is just how People feel and I think if you start With that prior then you are going to End up particularly if you're really Concerned about the well-being of women And of children you're going to end up Opposing things like porn and I think The reason that People people's attempts to deny the Specialness of sex where they end up Being much more permissive It comes from that prior but I think I Think the prior is a problem and I think Also that people are really inconsistent On it people will say simultaneously

That whatever sex is like playing squash But then they won't behave as if that's The case yeah yeah one of the other Interesting examples that you talk about In the book is this this situation and Uh I hadn't come across this before so You just really sort of threw me for one When when you posted in the book this Idea of Um Essentially sexual favors in return for Rent yeah yeah what's like what's the What's the what's the story here Um yeah it had some media attention During the pandemic because it became Landlords started doing it more Um it's basically the problem when when Uh landlords were advertised often Surreptitiously Um that they'll offer free or reduced Rent in exchange for sexual favors from Young attractive tenants right and I have I don't think I've ever come Across anyone who thinks that's fine Yeah aside from the like handful of Landlords who might propose it Themselves like all political party in The UK uh unanimously it's just like so Obviously a terrible thing right yes but Then I and and I think it's very Striking that say the liberal Democrats Are really opposed to The sex for rent and there's been Various calls to have like bespoke

Offenses Criminalizing Um criminalizing the advertising of it But they want to decriminalize the sex Industry Annie and Jeremy corbyn similarly was Opposed to sex for rent but also has Said on the record that he thinks that Decriminalizing sex work would be the More civilized option that was the Expression he used I'm like Laz this is the same thing You're just exchanging one form of Economic good for another if you if you Want to say that a Um a tenant is far too vulnerable to be Exchanging Sex in exchange for housing or if you Want to say that there is just something Grubby and exploitative and sexist and Whatever about even proposing this As an arrangement How can you possibly say that it's fine As long as it's cash It just doesn't make sense to me cash Can be exchanged for rent so it's like Literally just removing it intermediary Exactly but clearly something about it Feels really really bad I think it's Because it highlights what's going on I Think it's because Um I think that we've been sold a bit of a Fantasy about what the sex industry

Looks like Um A lot of people don't have any contact With the sex industry they probably Never knowingly spoken to they will have Spoken to sex buyers in their lives Because there are enough of them around But probably they wouldn't know about it And they probably won't have Have spoken to Um people in prostitution so a lot of What we think about what with a lot of What we think about sex industry comes From fiction Um things like Diary Of A Call Girl Would be a very typical portrayal of the Sex industry and a very unrepresentative One it's not to say that there aren't Examples of high class call girls who Have unusual experiences in the industry But it's absolutely not the norm Um I think part of the reason I Um I take a different view from the Standard view the sex industries because Of actually speaking to women who've Been in it at the at the Grim end right Not up there not at the the high end at The at the worst end where actually most Of the women are to be found right Um So I think that's part of the reason why People tend to have a slightly more Permissive rhetorical stance on it

Whereas I think with sex for rent it's Just so obvious what's going on Particularly in the middle of a housing Crisis is it people are desperate You can so easily imagine how someone Could be coerced into that kind of Really explosive and dangerous situation I also do wander a bit like a lot of the Reporting on sex around It's about University cities and about The possibility of students being Trapped in this kind of arrangement Because we know of course the students Are don't have very much money And I can't help but think that part of What's going on there is class as well I Think there's that feeling that The women who end up actually in like Normal prostitution are poor almost Always right and it doesn't feel as if Like it's something that could Realistically happen to middle class Women whereas a landlord making a sleazy Request of you does feel like it could Happen to middle class women so I can't Help but think that there's an element Of like self-interest there oh yeah That's just me being cynical there we Are all right we're just going to take a Quick break from the podcast to Introduce our sponsor which is huel now This is very exciting because I've Actually been a pain customer of huel Since 2017. I started eating Hill in my

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There are many men on only fans there Are some of the most you have male Clients okay yeah Um but only fans is considered a Reasonable side hustle because of course Sex workers work and just like I debate Myself on the internet through YouTube Videos uh you know what's really the Difference between that and only fans It's all consensual et cetera Etc yeah And then you have people like uh Alo who are kind of sort of outspoken About how great a lifestyle this is and How actually being sort of women having The ability to make money through Something like only fans where they have Zero risk of violence because it's all Through the internet and where the Alternative might be working in a really Grim Factory so why not allow women this This opportunity Let's put that as like on the one hand And then if we sort of add in this sort Of uh sex for rent situation whereby Hypothetically if a landlord would say You know what I don't want you to have Sex with me I just want to I just want You to be a sort of webcam girl for me And in return I'll give you a discounted Rent I would still feel really weird yes and And It's still there's something about that That still feels really Sleazy and not

Nice and bad compared to if that Landlord happened to be a pain client on Her only fans account And it's just the relationship was just Less obvious even though he's paying her Money in fact if he's getting a discount On rent What's going on yeah why does it feel so Bad in that situation maybe it's because It feels much more real and immediate You know what it also is probably to Some extent things like Diary of Secretary of a call girl that kind of Thing I mean it's always really Interesting whenever you see Um either fictional portrayals or you See media reports on the sex industry You know the classic photo they use in The sex industry is like a woman in a Short skirt leaning into a car like the Photos are always of typically sort of Headless women Um in sexy outfits you never see photos Of the clients I can't remember her name now off the Top of my head but there's this um German woman who did a a project where She took photos of Sex buyers because in Germany it's legal So they have sort of nothing to fear From being photographed so she did this Series of portraits of sex fires I mean Partly to demonstrate the fact that they Are you know old young fat thin whatever

Like the whole range of men but also Like they're not attractive generally Kind of by definition if you're seeking Out sex with someone who you have to Coerce through payment like there's a Good chance it's because she wouldn't Otherwise have sex with you right these Guys are not attractive and I think that I think it's actually important to Remember that not have it as this kind Of fantasy Arrangement where you've got Like a sexy guy and a dinner suit or Whatever that you might see on the TV Like these are the the the the the line I've I've heard from um Rachel Moran who Is a writer she wrote this amazing Memoir called paid for without being a Prostitution Um Is if you want to know what it actually Feels as a woman to to like really Imagine what it would be like to be in Prostitution go into any bar cafe Pub Whatever look around at every man in Your vicinity and imagine having sex With all of them Like no choice right it doesn't matter How much you fancy them and I wonder if Thinking about having a sex friend or a Nudes for rent Arrangement or whatever With your landlord is we all think of Like our last landlord and we think no No thank you yeah I guess it brings to Relief what's actually going on exactly

Whereas like a visceral reminder of what It means with like an anonymous field of Like only fans viewers or Shoppers and Stuff it just sort of separates that out Yeah Um the argument I make in the book for Why Um prostitution invariably causes trauma To women in particular in it is um you Know it's partly the fact it's Extraordinarily dangerous and it is and Has very high rates of violence of every Kind Um but also I think I think the reason It's Invariably experience is traumatic with A few exceptions at Ayla for instance Although Ayla actually did has she Stopped doing in-person sex work right So she didn't she didn't like it very Much but anyway Um is because a very very deep-seated Instinct within women which has a very Obvious and Um And clear evolutionary background is That we really care a lot about who we Have sex with like make choices very Very important which doesn't make sense If you understand the fact that men and Women have different making strategies And the It's very much in women's interest to be Picky about who they get pregnant by

Because pregnancy is Extremely demanding on the body Dangerous labor is dangerous you then Have a baby to look after for how many How many years afterwards which is Abundant newborn on your community Um you don't want to get pregnant by Some bozo Who's gonna who either has terrible Genes or is going to abandon you so that That desire to invest wisely you know Sexual partners is very very deep-seated And what prostitution does is it Violates that choice you you don't have The option you don't have the the make Choice is removed from your power and I Think that is A big part of the reason why it has this Very very Deeply felt emotional Response yeah so I think like with all These different hypotheticals and Scenarios and stuff I mean the Conclusion of chapter one is essentially Sex must be taken seriously because sex Is in fact a special good Beyond a Coffee or a handshake or staying late at Work it's like this special thing yeah And we might not be able to explain Exactly why it's a special thing using The liberal moral ideology but we all Just kind of know it is like it's it's Something that feels very unfashionable To say out loud but everyone just knows

It like no one actually behaves as if Sex is as irrelevant as getting someone A coffee precisely which segues US Nicely into um unique uh chapter two Which is men and women are different What's uh what's going on there I guess Kind of we're thinking physically and Also psychologically and like Emotionally Um physically it's Pro I mean even even That is it should be obvious yeah it Isn't necessarily the obvious thing is Just in the sense that women are the Ones who get pregnant Um which means that in any heterosexual Encounter there's that asymmetry Um Also the fact that women are much Smaller and weaker than men but like a Surprising degree I think people I think I Think it's become easier To trivialize that difference because we Live in a modern world where strength Differences aren't as obvious and even You can like if you don't have siblings And you don't go to the gym and you Don't do any manual work you can go like Quite a long way without realizing That like your sibling is going to Thrash you in a fight if you if you're If if he's male and you're female you Know particularly post puberty because Different upper body differences for

Instance between men and women are are Wild I think it's like a factor of two The male punching strength is twice as Forceful as female on average and it's One of those things if you look at if You look at like a scatter graph showing Different individuals like yes there are Some isolated examples Not as many as you might think though And definitely the extreme End by Olympians for instance Like if if women didn't have a Protective category in the Olympics they Just wouldn't even make it anywhere Close to Actually competing in the games Um because the difference is that Stark Which matters obviously right so if You're talking about like going home With the randomer If if a man over man or woman are alone Together the man just inherently is Going to have A physical Advantage Um combined with the fact that the woman Is the one who risks getting pregnancy Who who suffers the risks associated With things like hormone work control There are just a whole bunch of ways in Which women are a disadvantage in that Kind of scenario yeah yeah this uh this Idea that men and women are different Was pretty unfashionable when I was at University and I'm not sure to what

Extent it still is having been out of University now for several years Um but often I would find that when I was talking to People about this I'd be using the Phrase uh I I I'd be using the idea of Averages and the idea of a normal Distribution would just like an innate Understanding of what a normal Distribution is yeah and yet people Would always say oh but my friend is six Foot three and she's she could take any Man in a fight and be like okay people Can be really dumb about that yeah like What's what's going on there scientists It's funny isn't it uh yeah because People will tend to just come up with Exceptions Um And of course there's exception success Like this completely I'm completely Willing to incorporate exceptions into This whole analysis Um it is funny how people tend not to do It about more and morally neutral things Like height for instance we're happy to Accept that men are taller than women On average even if they're at all women And there are some short men like the Difference is massive Um Similarly on other physical differences And I mean the psychological ones is the One that people really get upset about

And obviously psychological differences Are much more amenable to cultural Influence and physical ones Um Still there's loads of evidence and the Evidence accumulates more and more Because we now have more sophisticated Research methods that makes it clear That these there are some important Differences to men and women on average And they hold true cost cross-culturally So I guess Um you know we could we can go into the Psychological differences in a moment But I I guess someone listening to this Might be thinking okay fine but like why Does on average even matter like why do I personally care about the average I'm Not necessarily the average man or the Average woman yeah uh at one point A Friend of mine gave dating advice to me Saying that you know uh on average women Prefer men who uh are sort of come Across as more masculine and therefore Wear a black T-shirt in your Tinder Profile picture isn't like don't sing Those Disney songs and have Harry Potter Posters in your house because the Average woman will think that it's not Particularly masculine it's not Particularly alpha male kind of Vibes And I mentioned this on a podcast where I'm sort of just in passing it all the Comments oh my God I can't like this is

Such a stupid way of thinking like Obviously you know you aren't trying to Appeal to the average you're trying to Appeal to in in an individual you should Be yourself etc etc yeah where do you See the balance of like how much should We care about on average versus actually Treating individuals as individuals So On an individual level people might make Decisions unique to their situation and That would be fine the problem is when You're talking about population level And you're talking about Laws obviously the legal system applies To everyone regardless of where you're Wrong curve Um but also applying to to Norms right Because my argument in the book is that We used to have quite an elaborate set Of norms relating to regulating Sex relationships between men and women And we've mostly done away with them and Left just the consent framework standing And I don't think the consent framework Is good enough I'm saying that actually things like you Know if you have a norm that is Something like mention hit women I mean the law says that too but just in Terms of what what's considered to be Socially acceptable there are all sorts Of things that are against law people do Anyway right like speeding people's

People's time Etc if you have a really Rock solid normal you say men hitting Women is really bad but women hitting Men it's not good but it's not quite as Bad like that's asymmetrical clearly Um and there might be examples of a Woman who really belts a man and you Know he's small and frail and that's and That's like very dangerous but The reason that you would have that Slightly that slightly Um different standard is because of Recognizing the fact that these average Differences exist and at the population Level a man hitting a woman is much more Likely to kill her than a woman hitting A man Because most men can kill most women With their bare hands and the reverse is Not true and that matters as a great Deal when you're thinking about Um Yeah relationships through men and women Yeah yeah I think that was the thing That really struck me with the debate That you had with uh Ayala on that unheard YouTube channel Podcast show thing where Seemed like you were both sort of saying The same thing but what she was saying Was a lot of kind of but let's take the Individual into account yeah and it Sounded like you were saying okay but if We're making laws and deciding norms for

A whole society we can't just take Individuals into account we have to with All of the All of the cap all of the downsides Associated with broad brush Strokes We've got to draw a broad brush Strokes Somewhere yeah we have to and so yeah Why not do that in a way that protects Women rather than that I guess protects the interests of the Huefeness of the world as as you say in The book yeah have you come across Rob Henderson's idea of luxury beliefs uh Only in the book I recently followed him On Twitter so I want to get into more of His his stuff yeah Um so his idea of luxury beliefs it's Very it's it's A fabulous idea it has so much Explanatory power is um His theory is that Um as luxury goods have become cheaper It used to be a way of for the elites to Signal their wealth would be to own Whatever precious item The One of the consequences of globalization Is that a lot of these Goods become Cheaper and his theory is that to some Extent Elite the Elite Class have Pivoted towards other means of Demonstrating their Elite status that Are not just sort of material and one Example of this is luxury beliefs so a

Luxury belief is a belief that confers Status on on Elite people and the costs Of it are born entirely by Poor people no okay so what's an example So the example that's most relevant for Us Is polyamory So Rob Um gives the example of being in a University town and setting your Tinder Location to like a mile radius and You'll find loads and loads of women at Harvard Oxford whatever Um who will say that they are Polly They're interested in open relationships They're doing this kind of you know Bohemian thing which is increasingly Fashionable Um and uh it's a way of them advertising Their sexiness and their rebelliousness And so on in a way that tracks partners And you know confers status But then he describes setting your Tinder ratio let's say in city like Oxford to like 10 mile radius And then you start seeing women Who are single mothers right who are Living the life who are living the Consequences of disregarding monogamous Marriage as an institution And like suffering for it being a single Mother is really tough in all sorts of Ways and they didn't get any status for That at all right like living the

Polyamorous life if you're poor and you Live on a council estate is not his Status at all and actually causes all Sorts of destructive effects in your Life whereas if you're rich you can be Poly and you can basically pick up the Pieces if everything goes wrong because You have that kind of buffer around you That's conferred by wealth and conferred By status Um It's really it's a really useful idea And I think that that applies to I mean It does apply to something like Um what ayla's talking about in relation To prostitution so she has an unusual Experience of it not always a good Experience but you know better than many And she describes it as being a lot Better than for instance working in the Total factory job that she used to do And I respect that I completely Recognize the fact that in her Individual case that may be true the Problem is she's experienced the the Collect tippy-toppy end of the best form Of prostitution through only fans and Other you know caming whatever there's Much less violence and she has quite Good money she's not pimped like every Possible Dimension is better than it Might otherwise be And the problem is that if we're going To legislate or or construct Norms

Around ayla's experience and do as many You know intersectional feminists and so On do and talk about sex work being work Which is a luxury belief right it's the Sort of thing that if you say that in a University common room it will confer Status on you or make you look Um open-minded and liberal and Bohemian And all of this stuff right Um it might be good for some women like Ayla it's not going to be good for a Woman at the opposite end of the scale Because the argument I make around Um decriminalizing the sex industry I mean bearing in mind that all legal Models in relation to the sex industry Are like better and worse trade-offs It's a difficult it's just a difficult Thing to legislate for inherently but I Think the the key problem with Decriminalizing demand making it legal To pay for sex is that there aren't Actually enough women like like Ayla Whoever who are willing to meet that Demand most women really really don't Want to be in prostitution they'll only Do it if they're very poor or if they're Otherwise coerced and the problem is That in societies where Um buying sex is legal more men do it Obviously like the difference is quite Apparent between a country like like in Thailand for instance like amazingly High proportion of men by sex

Um in Germany Um since the legalization of sex Industry the proportion of German men Who have bought sex has gone up a lot And the pro and it becomes routine Things like stag do is you'll go to a You'll go to a brothel right which is Not considered normal in countries where It's criminalized Um is you need to meet that demand you Need women who can Who can who can supply the sex that has Been demanded and that's when you get Things like increases in trafficking so Legalization is associated with an Increase in trafficking because They Define women who can you know meet This demand and make money for them and So what sounds like a great open-minded Idea which suits the interests of like The high-end call girls is a luxury Belief because the women who are Suffering for at the opposite end of the Social Spectrum yeah And I guess Um you talk about the Nordic model for This what is that so the Nordic model is When you uh decriminalize Sellers and Criminalize buyers decriminalize sellers Oh so it's not illegal to be the Prostitute but it is illegal to be the Person seeking a prostitute yeah and This is good because it well it reduces The demand and criminalizes the powerful

People are either men who buy the thing But it doesn't criminalize the poor Destitute women who are forced into it Yes which is historically often being What's done that the the women are the Ones who get locked up and the men go Free which is obviously horrendous so it Flips that okay Psychological difference with the Differences between men and women what Is uh what's uh what's the kind of worms Here Um and I guess how is it relevant to This this whole debate again it's that Population level thing Um I mean it the the degree of Difference varies quite a lot depending On what trait you're talking about Um one of the ones that gets the most Attention I think wrongly is Um The idea that men are more interested in Things and women are more interested in People Um do you remember James Day More Google Memo oh yes so I can't remember this Like five years ago maybe it was younger James Damon was a Um A technician at Google and I can't Remember his role of Google he worked at Google and he wrote um a memo which he Circulated among his colleagues Explaining the fact that the fact that

There's an underrepresentation of women In certain roles at Google And an overrepresentation in others so You see more women in things like human Resources Communications kind of roles Which are more people focused and then You see more men in more say at the Engineering roles He said that this could be explained by The fact that there are Um these average differences between What men and women are interested in and If you're looking at the the very Furthest Tale on the bell curve in terms Of say how interested you are in hard Sciences you are going to expect to see More men at that tale because Because of the gap on average between The two sexes His argument was completely sound his Research was completely sound he got Fired because it was just you're not Supposed to say this I think you're Specifically not supposed to say this if You're a man and you work for Google Um Um so as a woman who doesn't work for Google's reasoning here yeah he's right Um I also think that and he says this Himself in the memo that the difference Is the average difference is not massive So you will expect to see men and women Across the whole range of People things you know distribution the

Same is true of something like Agreeableness women are a bit more Agreeable than men are but there are Still plenty of women who are really Disagreeable employment who are really Incredible or neuroticism like there are Lots of traits which see a gap but the Gap isn't massive right Um something like aggression though the Gap is massive like the average Gap yes Yeah okay as well as and but then Obviously the Tails exactly the vast Majority of people in prison are men Yeah 95 in this country Um because and there's also an age SKU There so Um men and women but it's most striking In men are by far the most Um violent women in their teens and 20s And then the Violet fending falls off a Cliff Um which I don't think can be explained Except biologically right I don't I Think if you I think if you just want to Explain it on the basis of socialization Which is often a Um Uh a theory that feminists have have Pursued to say that men are particularly In childhood are socialized to be Aggressive through things like toy guns And that we should be focusing on you Know I think fine and clearly there is Some truth to that and clearly

Um there are certain childhood or other Environmental experiences that can make Violent offending more likely but then Also you look at something like the age Distribution in Violent offending you think hang on why Would a 20 year old Be many many times more likely than a 40 Year old to commit this kind of offense Unless what we're kind of talking about Here is hormones Which is trivializing a little which is Simplifying it a little bit because Clearly there's a lot of there's a lot Going on in terms of our biological Makeup but The gap between Um Violence violent aggression in men and Women Is massive And Very important if you're trying to if You're thinking at the population level And and the I mean the the the trait That's most relevant to me and that I Write about most in most detail in the Book is what psychologists call Sociosexuality So that's your interest in sexual Variety It's not quite the same thing as sex Drive okay but um someone who is high in The trait of um

Has unrestricted sociosexuality as Psychologists would say is someone who Is Really interested in having lots of Partners wants to jump into bed with Someone as soon as they've met them well Um Um is much more likely to say things Like having sex without love is fine Um basically someone who's having an Absolute ball post sexual Revolution Right is someone who is high in socio Sexuality and Men I don't think anyone Will be surprised to hear are higher on Average in that trait than our women and The Gap is fairly significant and at the Tails it's the most marked So that's why sex buyers are almost Entirely male Would it not be reasonable to say that This is all a result of socialization Like women have been oppressed Throughout history and [ __ ] shamed and Stuff and therefore of course they're Going to be lower in sociosexuality Um compared to men for whom like even Though we'd like to say the sexual Double standard doesn't exist it still Does men are conferred higher status by Having multiple partners Um all of those things surely mean that Actually maybe the sociate sexuality Gap Doesn't doesn't put doesn't really exist And it's just a it's just a relic of uh

Socialization So that's the argument yeah that's the Alternative to my thesis the problem With that argument is Um If if socialization is responsible for The Gap and the socialization is Remarkably consistent across time and Place Like it seems like every culture decides To flip you know it's like you flip the Coin and oh it's just coming up heads Every single time what are the chances Because if you look at there's some Really great studies done of um Sexuality across cultures and everyone Finds that men are higher in it on Average and I mean I think to some Extent we've done an experiment in the West post-section revolution in whether We could socialize it otherwise Um and if women are encouraged not just Permitted but encouraged to have sex Like men maybe they'll do it Um and the argument that I'm making the Book is that Um A lot of women are trying pretty hard to Have sex like men and are being quite Strongly encouraged by the culture and By The men in their lives to to attempt the High sociosexuality kind of way of being Um one of the things I examine at one

Point is Uh articles in women's bags About how not to catch feelings like Guides to how to have sex without Emotion and they're always Framed very carefully in a Gender-neutral way so that well you know Of a person didn't want to catch Feelings from their relationship with Another person how would they do that But it's very obvious that actually what We're talking about here is women Getting emotionally attached To in these sexual relationships and and Not wanting to like thinking oh man this Is dry this is like holding me back Because I want to be having this Um I want it to be behaving as if I had Unrestricted sexual sexuality I want to Be Um like participating in hookup culture Like a man but I have these like Niggling feelings Which keep getting in the way which I Think is I mean unless you want to say I Suppose it's socialization the childhood Socialization goes that deep that it Can't be undone Maybe but I think Occam's razor says It's just the difference there's a Difference that's like the by far the Simplest explanation for what we see Across the world This episode is very kindly brought to

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Forward slash Ali and you can use the Coupon code Ali at checkout Ali to get 50 off your first booking so thank you So much wework for sponsoring this Episode when I was in university in my Third year because you know in uh in in Medicine you can do that or whatever you Want in your third year so I ecology and One of our collector courses was the Psychology of individual differences and This was comparing things like men Versus women in all sorts of things Personality IQ controversial different Race differences between all these Different things And a lot of it was like well you know When it comes to things like aggression When it comes to things like Sociosexuality there's a clear Evolutionary psychology psychology Rationale for this yeah and you know Homo sapiens has been around for 300 000 Years it's really been an eye blink uh In terms of human history where the pill Has been a thing yeah so of course our Evolutionary brains are somewhat Hardwired to you know for women to be Choosier about who they have sex with And men's mating strategy to be like Willy-nilly you know yes whatever Exactly Um and yet if if it felt like even even At the time at University where Like I had friends who were doing like

Anthropology and like art subjects and Stuff where one of the one of the essay Titles in like the third year exam was Uh biological sex is a lie discuss and I Was like whoa I mean gender okay like Fair enough but like are we really going To talk about chromosomes and biological Sex and like uteruses and stuff as if They're just completely mythical and how Hormones have absolutely no effects at All and it became very unfashionable to Even suggest that there was a Evolutionary psychology explanation for Stuff to the point that anytime I bring Up the idea oh but like evolutionarily The response would be look that's what The men's rights activists say you've Been reading all this red pill stuff Haven't you Um but it sounds like it just is the Simplest explanation that yeah there is A difference and let's acknowledge the Difference and let's work with it rather Than trying to I guess override our Evolutionary instincts yeah I think that The so I do I do I do completely get and Sympathize with the Um feminist hostility to evolutionary Psychology and indeed to sort of Scientific sexism so-called in general It goes back a long way there have been Some pretty egregious examples of Historically of sort of attempts to Rationalize

Um the subordination of women Um the missing five ounces was the Phrase that was used by some 19th Century psychologists to describe the Fact that given that women had like Given that women have smaller brains Because women are smaller Um that missing five ounces on average Explained women's intellectual Inferiority When of course we know that like if You're not going to let women go to University like they're going to Struggle to completely like making Groundbreaking achievements in Intellectual Fields so like that's Cleared an example and we found I mean You mentioned section IQ we know that The average iq2 men and women is about The same even if the range is bigger for Men so I think that is a clear example of the Fact that it wasn't it was an Environmental limit But That doesn't mean that we have to Dismiss all scientific research into sex Differences and all of the evidence for It and I think Evolution I think Evolutionary psychology is just it's Just a morally neutral Field of study And we can do with it whatever we Want to do it's it is an inconvenient

Field of study if what you want to do is Kind of Deny the existence of human nature per Se and build kind of Build Utopia off the idea of us being Blank slates uh we aren't blank slates Though is the problem and we kind of Have to deal with what we've got and my View is that look at this sex Differences exist and that's Then that's just The fact it's not it's not a good or a Bad thing but it is what we have to work With and I think actually there's a Strong case for using evolutionary Psychology To feminist ends In some situations what's that So for instance Um If we accept the difference in Sociosexuality between men and women and We accept the fact that actually it's Going to be very difficult for women to Um be persuaded or persuade themselves Into imitating a more masculine style of Sexuality Then I think that the feminist argument Against hookup culture becomes Irrefutable Whereas if you're working with a blank Slate model and you're saying well all Of this is socialized all of this can be

Undone you're kind of giving fuel to the Um to the Hugh Hefner's who are intent On persuading women out of their like Natural and self-protective instincts so We talked about two areas in particular In which men and women are on average Different so aggression and Sociosexuality Um another area that I think I think you Talk about in the book but um again There's a a specific example that I'm Thinking of that brings us to light is That I was having a conversation with a Female friend Um a couple weeks ago months ago Um and There was this this person that we were Talking about this guy was going on a Date with a girl and well okay cool God's going on a date with a girl that They met online no harm done like let's Yeah okay cool Um but then it transpired that the chap In question had in fact booked a hotel Room For the night around where they were Having the dates just in case things Went well okay now in my mind I was Thinking all right fair enough And in her mind she was thinking oh my Freaking God this is just completely Unacceptable like oh this is in in Innate sense of revulsion at the thought That a man would have the audacity to

Book a hotel room just in case things Went well and of course it would be Consensual and stuff yeah and he's like We were we were a bit puzzled by this She and I because it's like we had a Very clear difference in me not batting An additives I mean obviously it's gonna Be consensual uh and is there as an Option and you know worst case he goes To his hotel room who cares yeah but for Her it was like this real sense of Revulsion and I feel like this idea of Kind of getting the ick and like feeling That innate sense of revulsion about Certain things yes uh we'll we'll give Women a very different response than it Does it just to men yes what's what's Going what's going on there yeah the Interesting isn't it and the ick is one Of those things that you read about in Women's mags and again Um We'll actually know is generally Represented as being a woman thing Women get the air con Mentor not to get The and what's been described there Basically in colloquial terms is um the Fact that women sexual disgust threshold Is a lot lower than men's And that's one of those things that you Can measure quite objectively because You can measure people's disgust Response through things like Sweating and heart rate

Um and it's much easier to trigger in Women than it is in men Um there's interesting evolutionary Theories around this I mean it might be Partly to do with mate Choice the fact That women care more about it than men Do it might also be to do with the fact That women tend to be more vulnerable to Sexual disease so women are more easily Grossed out by signs of disease in a Potential sexual partner and that might Be because Um for nature apprenticeship sex just Means that women tend to be more Vulnerable to disease transmission from Sex and also That women are more likely to pass Sexual diseases onto their children Through pregnancy and breastfeeding so There's maybe a more like deeply Embedded Instinctive Protective Factor there Um whatever the cause it does seem to be It does seem to have some kind of Evolutionary cause it could be several Um and yeah it is deeply felt and I Think it's something that um Um I mean partly because I think we're Very invested in our post-sexual Revolution culture in denying the Differences between men and women Pretending that we're very similar I Think it's something that um men and

Women struggle to Um Sort of instinctively comprehend that Difference I think this often is what's Going on with conflict between In cells and feminists in that Like I think from From a certain kind of maybe naive Intel Perspective the fact that any woman can Go out into the street or anywhere Really and pick up a sex partner within Minutes is seen as heaven on Earth You're living exactly what I'm dreaming Of the ability to attract sexual Partners whereas from women's Perspective they're like I don't want to Have sex with some random guy on the Street like that's terrible I dream of Being Um like left alone by creepy guys who Who scare me But there's like a visceral level in Which each group can't quite understand The other yeah because we have very Different instincts around sexuality Yeah Um I remember sort of Anytime this guy I think in the last Year or so this is the sort of Conversation has been had like two two Or three times with with female friends Of mine where they've mentioned that Like you know they've got all these male

Friends and then at one point one of the Male friends will just throw away You're Gonna drop a throwaway comment that oh Of course every guy in your friendship Group would would be down to have sex With you if you if you were up for it And they'd be like what what like it Completely completely blows their minds Because they cannot imagine anything About that you cannot cannot imagine a World in which you're like but I I see These guys as my friends they're like They're like brothers yeah and they're Just Yeah there's almost no girl who ever met Who is actually appreciated the fact That men were willing to have sex with Basically anyone as long as they meet a Reasonable threshold for attractiveness Whereas that's just absolutely not the Case for women and there are like even Studies where they've gone out on the Streets and done this like Yes and 100 of the women's I know yeah To to random requests from men whereas I Can't remember the figures but it's Probably not majority of men say yes Unless they're in a relationship or Something like that I mean it's worth Bearing in mind that Um men do have kind of different modes Of sexuality so what men are not Consistently behaving like cads Um men have a low bar when it comes to

Casual sexual partners when as you say Pretty much you know Julie Bend or Feminist friend of mine she um likes to Collect news stories about men having Sex with inanimate objects because they Do sometimes come up in like local news And she has a little like informal Collection of man found having sex with A pile of leaves man found having sex With a bike you know like imagine it and It's happened right so clearly there is An extent to which men can be persuaded To basically shag anything like living Or dead but Men aren't like that though about like Potential wives right so when it comes To choosing a long-term partner men are Very high standards and Um you know care deeply about the whole Package not just how attractive a woman Is with everything else about her Um Women don't seem to have those two modes Women basically will have sex the Criteria that women look for in a casual Partner and look for in a long-term Partner are the same criteria Um and actually often women will Have sex with a casual partner in the Hope that he'll become a long-term Partner Um down the line whereas and I I think a Lot of women don't realize that men have Two modes which can cause heartbreak

Because if you've if you're if you're Having sex with a man with the belief That you're on wife track and he doesn't Think that yep then that's really Painful Yeah Um yeah this is another one of the Things where I think there's just such a Clear like basically everyone every man Knows that there are two thresholds yeah There's the threshold for a good time And there's the threshold for an actual Long-term relationship yeah and whenever Women are confronted with at least from What I've seen it just okay again it's Like really mind-blowing it's like oh my God men are the worst men are trash like I can't believe this is the thing and Um this idea that women don't have two Modes though so uh What about the Trope of like women uh You know wanting to have sex with the Pool boy or the personal trainer but not Actually wanting to you know those People on aren't husband material They're good time material is that not The same as sort of cat versus I guess It happens although it is interesting I Wonder if it happens more in fiction Than in real life because it's Interesting that um Men and women tend to cheat for Different reasons so men and more like Could cheat on their Partners basically

Just because they're horny there's no There's no difference between the level Of reported relationship satisfaction Between many cheating men who don't Cheat It's not because they're unhappy in Their relationships they're cheating It's they're cheating either because They're unusually horny or they're Unusually like unscrupulous morally or Both Um whereas for women women cheat when They're unhappy in their relationships And they don't otherwise and that are You know on average whatever their Exceptions but that seems to be because What women are doing the purpose of Cheating for women is a Lifeboat to line Up the next relationship because you're Unhappy in your current relationship Um so you normally wouldn't therefore Cheat with the poor boy If your husband is wealthy normally You'd be cheating with someone who seems Like a like a viable alternative partner Slightly different motivation to play There okay interesting um There's a great book by David boss I Mean David boss in general is a Fantastic reading yeah I recently read The evolution of Desire yeah which is Really interesting really interesting This latest book is called bad men oh I'll check it out very very good yes and

He covers a lot of this in great detail Nice and and provides the wealth of data That is very persuasive yeah like I I Have a surprising interest in in this Genre the topic I I just think it's it's It's this combination of like Really taboo and controversial and also Like clearly there's this whole like Scientific and like sociological and Evolutionary psychological backing Behind the things that we don't like to Talk about that we feel around are Controversial yeah um I think it depends On your personality and how much you Enjoy that I find it thrilling yeah like To to sort of go behind the scenes and Be like yes Of course this is true Um but some people find it confronting It depends yeah Um Okay so we've talked about kind of Two two core differences between men and Women psychologically on average again With all the caveats uh aggression and Sociosexuality yeah and I feel like Those are sort of the two pillars that Form the rest of your thesis around Sexual Revolution being potentially not As good a thing as we might have liked Yeah so had sort of if we accept that Okay fine let's say that Louise is right About all the evidence the weight of the Evidence suggesting that in fact men are On average more aggressive and more

Sociosexual than women what does that Mean about Stuff regarding sex relationships gender Dynamics it means that the people who've Actually won from the sexual Revolution Are high status men Not necessarily all men Because there are some there are you Know quite a lot of men if you're Familiar with the data that comes out of Dating apps which shows that Um it's a minority of men who tend to be Getting all of the attention from women And the majority of men are getting Almost nothing Um I think that holds true generally Generally post-sexual revolution in Terms of like who is actually like the Hugh Hefner's are not representative Right the Hugh Hefner is a high status Attractive men who can get loads of Consequence free sex Um they're having a great time is is That launcher on the women's side as Well no because what women do you're Familiar with hypergamy as a term so Um women are much more Invested than men are in general in Having Um relationships with people who are With men who are high status than Themselves just called hypergamy and What that means in practice on things Like dating apps where you've got a very

Large pool of Partners to choose from is That women tend to all be flocking to The top Um the men at the top of tree so I think The figure is it's like on Tinder 10 the 10 most attractive men are getting 60 of Likes okay from women and then the Bottom 10 are getting like zero it Doesn't match up neatly based on your Attractiveness level women are all kind Of aiming yeah Um and because on Tinder and in general In a kind of casual sex culture those Men are not obliged to stick to one Woman They don't get married and then remove Them as holes from the dating Marco Right they have simultaneous Relationships or they have back-to-back Relationships what those men are Basically doing is they are like Living a polygonus yeah life right where They're accumulating multiple partners Okay and the women aren't necessarily Aware of this right right but so you end Up with some men who are having Um Lots of Partners most men are having None and the women are also miserable Because they're having these like brief Unsatisfying relationships with Attractive men who then ghosts them but This idea of for example like the top 10 Of men are getting likes the 60 of the

Likes yeah is this not also true of like The top 10 of most attractive women are Getting 60 of the likes or is it all Women are inundated with likes Because men yeah thinking of every Single female friend I know who's on Dating now just like yes dozens if not Hundreds of matches I mean you'll have You know you'll have a bit of a range But it doesn't accumulate at all in the Same way yeah like pretty much pretty Much any woman on Tinder is going to Have some options available to her which Is not true for men yeah yeah I remember There's a there was a time a few years Ago this was when back when I was a Medical student Um one of the chaps in our year uh was Like incredibly attractive and we just Went on as Tinder one day and it it was Just like something out of this world It's like every single right swipe was Oh you've got a match a good match You've got a match you've got a man and We were all just like oh my God like It's just so totally different an Experience whereas any any like most Female friends that I I have who have Made accounts on Tinder or hinge I've Just been like oh I've got 143 matches I'm just like wow incredible yeah Rob Henderson talks about Um uh he he's um written a sub stack on Dating apps and he talks about a friend

Who A very attractive male friend who was One of an early adopter of Tinder and Had 21 000 women match with him over a period Of some years so much so that Tinder Identified him as being like a stellar User and they gave him perks which then Meant that he accumulated even more Um in contrast to another friend who Wasn't that bad looking but was you kind Of a bit below average he had seven in The same period so the inequality is Amazing I've read that if you if Tinder Was Um a nation-state and you're assessing It's like inequality it would be one of The most unequal countries in the world Oh only fans would be the most unequal Country in the world because only Because only fans creators are also Subject to the kind of burrito law and a Minority of only fans creators basically Taking all the money and the the median Only fans creator has 30 subscribers Hmm so I mean it sounds like the Conclusion there is like uh unless You're our top 10 10 alpha male Um then you're unlikely to have a great Time on dating apps yeah I think it's Broadly that experience and I think in General I I think that applies to other Things too I mean So I guess

Something like porn I mean so some men Would say that Um the fact that you now have copious Availability upon on every platform Going Um and that there isn't nearly as much Stigma associated with it as it has been Historically is great I don't know though if I think actually there's an increasing Feeling among men that actually porn is Bad for men Yeah there's a lot of uh men's men's Personal development YouTube channels That are recently peddling this Narrative of like porn is really bad Delete all the porn like stop spending All your time on yeah yeah and no fap Just becomes more and more influential With time Um so I think that even though you know The the argument of making the book is Is counter to this that the argument I'm Taking aim at is the idea that the sex Revolution has been fabulous for women And it was all about freeing women I don't think that's true I think that it's been much more to the Benefit of Hugh Hefner than Marilyn Monroe right but It's also not the case that the sexual Religion has been consistently amazing For men I think the sexual revolution Has been good for a minority of men who

Are able to enjoy its fruits you know But even then I think it has a shelf Life I think it's probably really good fun to Be the man with 21 000 matches on Tinder When you're in your 20s and 30s you're Not going to have that in your 70s Though and I think that if you make the Decision To just sleep around and not ever Um get married not ever have children And so on That might be great for a period when You're young I think you will regret it Later though generally so I would say That even Hugh Hefner Had a grand old time you know in his Prime but he he ended up being a pretty Pathetic figure by the end So yeah someone in the 70s having lots Of that is just a just a little you know It's very pathetic isn't it yeah yeah Exactly what was the story with these And sorry and how do we landed the idea Of that consent is not enough Is a actor comedian and he um he was at The center of a metoo scandal which Attracted a lot of attention I think Because it was a particularly sort of Controversial example which means that People people love talking about Controversy so I think that's why it Became prominent Um he went for a date with a woman

Who Um they went back to his house Afterwards she He kind of subtly pressured her into sex She didn't she he wasn't violent or Forceful at all She didn't say no but equally she wasn't Really into it and he Sort of Persisted in trying to persuade her even When she was lukewarm and they ended up Having sex and then late and then she Went home I think she texted him later And said something like that was weird And he said sorry something on those Lines and then sometime later she wrote An anonymous account or a pseudonymous Account of what had gone on And it became the source of controversy Because the question was whether or not She had really consented to the sex I Think reading her account that it's Clear that she did consent in a legal Sense in the as Ansari jumped to the Legal bar The legal bar however is very low I Think that the the reason that she was Distressed and the reason a lot of women Identified with her account in relation To their own experiences is because he He behaved legally but he not like a Gentleman right but she she That kind of vocabulary is so Old-fashioned it's so unfamiliar to

Anyone who's kind of operating a liberal Feminist framework She couldn't use words like and Gentlemanly or chivalry or even I think Words like respect or dignity you know Words like these are a little bit kind Of so she talked about consent and Everyone else talks about consent and That became the subject of discussion Because that was the only vocabulary Left available I think that the consent I think that The the focus on consent as the sole Framework for determining whether or not Sexual behavior and good is bad is good Or bad is completely inadequate there Are so many there's so much gray area Between Good sex and consensual sex Hmm I guess sort of consent is this sort Of legal bar yeah but then we're saying That beyond that there is actually a Moral or gentlemanly chivalrous Respectable dignified bar exactly and You're not allowed to talk about that Because that's just it just feels a bit Weird like why would you bring up like Gentlemanliness that Hawks back to the Heroes of I don't know the 1900s or Something yes Um and therefore when trying to critique Aziz ansari's Behavior or otherwise If the only word you're allowed to use Is consent it means that everything just

Is like okay the people who are like Prosies I'm sorry the only thing they're Arguing about is was a consent yeah to Which the answer is probably yes but Like kind of gray area but probably yes The people who are anti-season sorry or Like was it consent to which they think The answer is probably no but like gray Area but probably no and consent becomes The Battleground by which all of these Things are I figured out and I think We're all talking past each other By doing that because actually I don't Think consent is the source of dispute I Think the the source of dispute is Whether or not he behaved morally To which I think the answer is no he did Also behave normally right like this is A completely standard Style of encounter I mean that was part Of the reason why it was so widely Publicized because a lot of women can it Resonated with them they'd had those Kind of experiences where you know Because the expectation particularly Because he's famous she's not famous you Know the the expectation was that she Would put out on a first date Because that's normal And she didn't really want to but she Also didn't really have the confidence To assert Her reluctance which is why she kind of Went along with her and I think and I

Think it's a really good example of the Fact that Understanding this solely in terms of Individual decision making just doesn't Quite work because we're all functioning In An environment where where there are Paths of least resistance Which are determined by the culture and If the path of least resistance when you Go on a date with a celebrity is to put Out on a first date then of course that Is what the direction which you're going To be pushed Even if you don't really want to but Again how do you talk about that in Terms of consent like it's just these Are completely inadequate Framework yeah yeah one of the um one of The passages that you quote quote in the Book I think it's um this this girl who Had a consensual sexual encounter Um but didn't really feel great about it And tried to convince herself that it's It's just sex yeah I think that phrase It's just sex Um highlights a lot of what yeah what's What's going on there yeah so this is a Um an anonymous I think metoo Contribution for a woman who had had sex With a guy who actually you know she Fancied him there was no coercion Involved Like it was kind of fine it also was

Left her feeling Dreadful And I think often I think that was often Actually the case with a lot of me too Stories I mean some of the metoo stories Were straightforwardly Criminal But not necessarily like a lot of them Were to do with having kind of Sex that was sort of fine and and was Supposed to feel okay according to What's considered normal Um but women felt terrible about it and They didn't quite know why they felt Terrible and it was difficult to Articulate and often The way of resolving that feeling was to Talk about Was to suggest that somehow consent had Been absent under the man in question Had Had not respected consent in some way Rather than you know as we were saying To say that he had behaved in an Ungentlemanly way or moreover to say That actually maybe there is something Wrong in general with the Norms maybe Maybe the whole expectation that women Will be having emotionless sex Is setting women up to fail and that we Shouldn't be surprised to discover that Women are feeling terrible after having Sex it actually is basically not suited To their self-interest I mean Particularly when you think of it in Terms of the physical imbalances like

The whole hookup culture set up Grossly unfair the fact that you've got Women are the ones who have to worry About pregnancy women are the ones who Have to worry about hormonal birth Control women are the ones with risk of Violence Women are the ones who are much less Likely to want casual sex massage much Less like to seek it out women orgasm a Lot less than men do like every in every Possible way like women end up on the Losing side of this Arrangement so why Is it being normalized I mean my Argument is it's not it's not feminist In the least And I I suspect as well that the reason That it's been normalized as it has is Partly with ideology it's partly through Such disenchantment it's it all feeds Back into liberal feminism and Liberalism in general Which is sort of invested in seeing us As atomized individuals who are Basically indistinguishable from each Other in terms of sex I think also part Of what's going on is to do with this Hypergamy thing it's the fact that women Are competing generally for the most Attractive men That is the 10 of men who are getting Most of the offers of sex And it does mean that those men have an Amazing amount of power

In the dating market and whereas Previously in a monogamous marriage System They would get married and they'd remove Themselves from the dating market now They are like they can basically live an Informal polygamy Um which isn't actually codified in law But that's that's basically what they're Living Which means that they can demand from Women The kind of sex they like Which is casual polified etc etc And so women feel like they have no Choice because you know if you if if you Don't put out someone else will Hmm and I think often it's easier to Resolve that feeling you know it's not Difficult to find women who will say That they like this that they find it Empowering etc etc Um I think the reason for that though is Because it's a much much more appetizing Kind of narrative for what's going on You don't want to think of yourself as Being someone who's just been kind of Funneled into dysfunctional styles of Of sexuality and behavior it's much Better to think of yourself as being an Agent Um and there will be examples where That's true But equally I know so many women who

Have lived like that as younger women And then and later have changed their Minds and thought actually I was I Wasn't doing that for good reasons I was I was pressured in you know various ways Um Bridget for tazy who's a um American Podcaster A comedian she I spoke I spoke on her Podcast she read the book and she she Wrote an essay about it last week Actually it called I regret being a [ __ ] Because Bridget used to wear for Playboy As a writer Um and Um very much lived this like sexually Disenchantment life of having lots of Casual hookups Um and now says she said that she opened The first page of my book and just burst Into tears because She she completely recognized that Mindset of sort of persuading yourself That this is good Even if it feels wrong this is one of The disputes I had with Ayla in the Unheard interview because Her emphasis and like I get it on a Rational level is that some people are Well suited to this kind of Casual relationships some people aren't The task is to work out which category You're in and to like carefully examine Your own responses which is fine and I'm Sure for some people that works the

Problem is that human beings are Amazingly good at self-deception And if the any of the any of the high Status thing to be is the woman who Likes the casual Style of sex then of course you're going To sort of You have an interest in like assigning Yourself to that category and ignoring The extent to which you you feel Differently of course that used to be The flip side right it used to be that Women the pressure was on women not to Have premarital sex and women who Actually wanted to would have suppressed That feeling in themselves But this is this is the power of culture Um So presumably you're not advocating a Return to Pre-1950s morality where there is a Clearer you know the the vehicle of Shame is used strongly against women to Disincentivize Multiple partners and Casual Relationships as it is with men but like Less so Um presumably that's that's not what We're trying to get to no and actually I Do worry a bit that the um I think that There's a correction happening now or Starting to happen in the this kind of The sexual hyper liberalism has swung so Far on the other in One Direction I

Think that there is starting to be a Spring back and there's starting to be a Reaction against it particularly among Gen Z you hear a lot more kind of Criticism of sex positivism on things Like tick tock and I do worry a bit that That could take the form of [ __ ] shaming And let's say women who went on only Fans in like the great only fans Fest of 2020 are gonna really pay the price Later I don't want that to happen like I Really sincerely don't I don't think That the it's kind of like with the Nordic model I don't think that the Mechanism for Um Change should be directed at Criminalizing or or shaming women who've Actually been taken advantage of I think I think I want my shame to be directed At the Playboys The problem is that obviously on like a Societal scale it's quite hard to Coordinate yeah Hmm welcome to your action points uh in In just a moment um I'd love to talk a Little bit uh I'd love to talk a bit of A way to turn a phrase about sexual Assault and sexual violence and I wonder If we can start with kind of your Background in this because I know that You have a background in this yeah so my First job out of the University was Working in the red crisis center what

Does the Rape Crisis Center do Center do Uh it depends on the center but Generally Um uh a emotional support helpline Um helping victims through The criminal justice process providing Therapy to victims and things like Support groups and so on my job Specifically was doing one-to-one Support with teenage girls and I also Did Um consent workshops in schools and Trained to helpline volunteers what Prompted you to go into this career path Or this job after University I was I was Volunteering on it Um at University And then a job came up And I had actually intended to stay in The charity sector but then I sort of Became a journalist by accident a little Bit so here I am so what was your Experience in this Rape Crisis Center And I started volunteering there I was Doing interviewing women's studies and I Found the distinction between like the Theory the feminist Theory and feminist Reality extremely jarring Um Things like the course that we did on Introduction to feminist philosophy Had so little in it about very little in It really about violence or biology Um almost nothing about motherhood

It was always kind of angels dancing on The head of a pen stuff about defining Women and gender presentation and all This kind of stuff and I've always just Felt like I don't really care about Things like lipstick and drag and I Don't know all this performance stuff it Just doesn't seem too very important to Me whereas um what you see on the ground In Frontline feminists Um Services Um Like an amazing proportion for instance I did not know this for a sort of Underground amazing proportion of child Sexual abuses committed by stepfathers So much which is something that Evolutionary biologists have paid close Attention to so a step parent is about a Hundred times more likely to abuse a Child than a biological parent it's Called the Cinderella effect And the theory is that it's because they Don't have any biological investment in The child and actually if anything the Child might be a con a threatener Competitor within the household Um because they you know monopolize the Resources of the new partner yeah Yeah there's that quote from I think Stephen Pinker that you cite in the book Can you remember what that what that was I think you said something like it's the

It's the single most The single clearest determinant ever Found For predicting child abuse Yeah which just feels like I mean Someone listening to that is going to Think oh but like I know a step parent Who's amazing is that fine yeah agreed Um there are loads of exceptions we're Talking about minority but it is also a Very apparent on paper the extent to Which it raises the risk okay so it Sounds like one of the things you you Learned working in the Rape Crisis Center was Difference between kind of feminist Theory and kind of reality on the ground Yeah step Parents abusing their children way more Yeah I mean one example also just the Use of victims The modal rape victim is 15. 15. yeah Surprisingly young right that's Surprisingly young yeah and the Proportion of female rape victims who Are over the age of 30 is in the single Digits So basically your period of risk is from Adolescence to 20s Surprisingly young it does kind of like It kind of makes sense actually with the Sort of The Stereotype I mean all Stereotypes are kind of based in truth That's why they become stereotypes and

But it's not it doesn't really make Sense within the more academic Explanation for rape which puts much More emphasis on Um Power And socialization and patriarchy and all These kind of social forces rather than Thinking about Possible biological origins of sexual Violence Like if you The age of The age of rape victims Matches perfectly With the age of Um attractiveness to Men of women Right teens and twenties like that's why Porn is all women in their teens and 20s Right that's why teen is consistently The most popular category is because It's associated with fertility like and If If you think that the motivation for Rape has nothing to do with sexual Desire that it's about Um violence and control and power it Doesn't really make sense but I think if You If you recognize that actually such a Desire is in there too Than it does and so I think that I think What happened in my thinking is that Seeing noticing these things noticing

These Trends and things like Demographics Made me think hang on I don't think the Full story is is there in the academic Feminist explanations for this phenomena Yeah and and so You mentioned so I I remember when I was Thinking when I was in my sort of Undergrad undergrad years Um around 2013-ish was when rape culture Started becoming a thing that people Talked about yeah and within a period of Like a few months it seemed like every College and every University Society was Putting on sexual consent workshops Which Were always a little bit of a like a Uh the the impression I got was that People felt that they were a bit Pointless but like no one wanted to say That they felt that they were a bit Pointless because I mean obviously there Was an epidemic exactly obviously you Know there was an epidemic of like rape Going amongst college campuses Apparently especially in the US but like Also apparently in the UK yeah every Woman you would speak to has had some Kind of experience of sexual violence Every man you speak to says hey all my Friends are gentlemen like they wouldn't Act like that clearly there's a Difference clearly there's something Going on yes so you said that you've ran

Sexual consent workshops at schools Rather than University but it's much the Same thing yeah what's going on there I Mean I think that they are fine I don't I think that Um I think it's good for institutions to do Them I also don't think they do what People think they do generally because What people think they do is they Educate would be rapists you know they That like the the idea being I suppose That Um Rapists don't know it's wrong or they Don't know that what they're doing is Rape or that there's some sort of like Information Gap that needs to be bridged Then it's not normally a phrase like That because when you phrase it like That it sounds really stupid it is Really stupid I think that what can Certain workshops actually do is they um They provide sign posting for victims You say if this happens to you this is What you do they Um they make it clear to victims what The law is and when Things that have been done to them like That they're allowed to object they're Allowed to go to police Etc And I think it's also useful in an Institution to make certain boundaries Very clear so for instance I think it is

Good for schools to tell kids that if They share revenge porn there will be Disciplinary consequences because then If they do they can't claim that they Didn't know right fine so I think all This stuff is good The problem is I think that Um Sex rape is not a consequence of Misinformation or misunderstanding Generally I think it is a consequence of Sexual aggression combined with Opportunity right and one of the things About universities I mean there's Actually evidence to suggest that women Who are at universities are less at risk Of sexual violence than women who aren't If you're just for age so the idea that Campuses are like uniquely Um infused with rape culture doesn't Really seem to match up with the data It's also though the case that um You know there are certain environments To some extent Found on University campuses but also Elsewhere which are provides a lot of Opportunities for would be rapists Like for instance environment with loads And loads of drunk women Is like The perfect environment if you are Sexually predatory and you're looking For And you're looking for victims

Yeah so one argument that I've heard is That this idea of Sexual assault and rape being Sort of violent aggressive men finding Women in an Alleyway or in a club is not Actually the majority of rape but the Majority of rape happens within Relationships or within families like uh I don't know the date on this to what Extent does that hold true in yours so The most common type of perpetration is An acquaintance Um it is true that boyfriends and Ex-boyfriends particularly ex-boyfriends Um are also very common perpetrators and It is also true that sexual violence Within families Is more common than I think anyone Really wants to admit Um so there are yeah there are a lot of Different circumstances and it's true That the violent rape in an Alleyway is A minority of cases I mean stranger rape In general I think is like Less than five percent I can't remember Exactly the figures but stranger rape is Quite unusual Um although women have a very intense Fear of it it's you know it motivates a Lot of Um Uh safety work that women do when They're out But yeah it is less common than

Something like an acquaintance I guess if we if we put those situations Aside and we if we and we then think About the college campus yeah where Like Clearly There's this I want to say gray area but like Depending on what side like depending on Your perspective it's not it's not Particular grade it's just black and White between Women having Essentially being sexually assaulted by Dudes in a college campus and it seems Like Telling women to not drink alcohol Uh uh feels like profoundly victim Blaming ye yeah yeah and One of your Um kind of conclusion conclusion points At the end of the book where Essentially that the chapter is entitled Uh listen to your mother is Um you know the the idea of get drunk or High in private and with female friends Rather than in public or in mixed Company yeah now when we were kind of Doing research for this for this podcast Like this was a point where you know I Just I've been discussing this book with Loads of friends over the last like Several several weeks since I've since I First came across it this idea of

It sounds like Louise Perry is saying that the solution To sex uh just male sexual violence is To tell women to stop drinking which Feels like not the right answer somehow So like what's it's probably the most Controversial line in the book of the Book that has got a contrast stuff in it Um yeah I mean I don't say women Shouldn't drink I say women shouldn't Get drunk Around them I don't know So that is slightly different but I yeah I know that's really counter-cultural I Completely agree it wasn't Counter-cultural until you know 1980s 1990s that wasn't considered Counter-cultural Um culture has had quite a lasting Influence in terms of Um valorizing women drinking like men And getting like Blind drunk in public Um I mean it's one of those things where I think I am very sensitive to the victim Blaming risk and I and I and part of the Part of the reason for low prosecution Rates of sexual violence is to do with Rape myths being embedded in the Criminal justice system there are a lot Of other reasons too but that is one of Them Um and so we you know we do have to be

Sensitive to that and I'm and I say Completely unequivocally that a man who Raped a drunk woman is the only person At fault in that scenario Having said that in practice this is What we tell our friends this is what we Tell our sisters and our mums tell their Daughters right in practice everyone Knows that it's not a very good idea To incapacitate yourself when you're Around men that you can't necessarily Trust The problem is just that it's not you're Not supposed to say it not publicly you Say it to people in private you don't Say it publicly and I think the problem With not saying it publicly is that um Not all young women do have people who Will tell them In private there's a certain hypocrisy There I think hypocrisy as in in that You can privately as a feminist choose Not to get Really drunk and you can tell your loved Ones to do the same thing but you can't Advertise it as a As a guideline you have to you have to Say publicly you know of course women Should be able to behave as men do and Of course they should you know this Naturalistic fallacy like of course it Should be possible for women to do to do Anything in public and to be completely Safe from predators but the fact is that

They're not And I think that any kind of Norm which Encourages women to behave in a way that Will will result in Lives being ruined by sexual violence I just think it's dishonest So I felt I felt it needed to say it Even though I knew that it would get Backlash because it's true and I think That everyone does actually know that It's true it's like we're sexually Disenchantment you know there's the Rhetorical level where you say You should be able to do whatever you Want and sex is like playing squash and Then there's help people behave and the Gap I think shows us exactly how how True the rhetoric really is Do you think like What would our kind of Steel Man Feminists say uh is is the is like a Good reason why we don't have this Rhetoric in in public Because Um men will hear it and they will Conclude that it is that drunk women are Asking for it And jury members will hear it and we'll Conclude that Um drunk women are asking for it and That it will feed into these Um negative stereotypes around rape Victims and I agree that that is a risk But I also think that

There are trade-offs involved which are Really difficult This was an area in which And I just I just didn't have the Vocabulary or like education or just Like understanding to actually fully Appreciate the the different sides of The debate because every woman that I Spoke to about this book and about the Fact we were doing this interview and Sort of you know the people who who read It or looked at the the headlines that Said basically Lewis Perry's advocating Don't drink around meant broadly does Kind of simplify it but just like Yeah I mean like we'll we all know this Like we'll tell our friends we'll tell Our daughter that we all like like Everyone knows this to be the case yeah But it felt like there was something Damaging about Saying about actually saying it out loud And I guess that's the sphere of well it Just feeds further into it like it's Already hard enough to get Um convictions for rape yeah does Encourage it does putting a line like This in print actually contribute to This potentially getting worse for women I also think that it's much more Important to prevent sexual violence Than cons than successfully prosecute it Right if given the choice it's really Hard to prosecute sexually I mean for a

Whole bunch of reasons some of which is To do with Colin's liberal justice System but some of which is to do with The nature of the act like if If if the line between illegal and legal Sex is entirely based on what happens Between two people in a room with no Witnesses it is just very very difficult To prove the presence or absence of Consent so I think that we're never Going to have 100 prosecution rate no Matter how good the system is which Means I think that it's more important To try and You know If you do a poster campaign saying rape Is bad you shouldn't rape you're gonna Prevent precisely zero rapes Because that's not that's not what's Motivating rapist right whereas Um you know a style of post campaign That police forces occasionally release And which is often gets feminist Backlash is things like look out for Your friends in public if you're out Drinking make sure you know where they Are make sure they get home safely in a Taxi and it often gets criticized in the Poster campaigns even get withdrawn Because of feminist criticism but I Think You know yes maybe it's the case that Women know this already and they're Already doing this maybe not I mean

Teenage girls are pretty stupid Sometimes teenage boys are pretty stupid Sometimes like this is just the nature Of being inexperienced and not having Not having already learned it I mean I Dedicated the book to the women who Learned it the hard way because I think That the the current setup Is kind of all around these slightly Unspoken truths and the the existence of These differences which we kind of know About we don't talk about you know the Fact that men have two modes of Sexuality right the fact that men will Will treat women as if they're really Cheap if given the opportunity the fact That getting really drunk around strange Man is risky all this stuff that is true And we all kind of adults know But we don't necessarily say and we Don't necessarily tell young people and So you have to go through that process Of discovering for yourself and you and I think the problem is that there will Be Girls in particular who during that Process of discovering it for themselves Get really unlucky There was a common refrain when I was at University which is don't tell women how To dress teach men not to rape yeah Um which I think Was trying to get at the frustration With

Saying hey look men are just trash or Ten five to ten percent of managers Trash anyway so like girls watch out for Yourselves It's like why should we have to do that Why should we have to say that like the Problem is clearly with the men and not With the women yep Um Marley that's completely correct Morally yeah it's just in practice But it's difficult I mean I think the how people dress Thing is a little bit of a Canard I'm not really aware they're Actually being that strong correlation Between what women wear and their Likelihood of being assaulted as far as I know it it's not The length of your skirt isn't isn't Very relevant Um I think what's much more relevant is Is basically ending up in scenarios Where That five to ten percent of bad guys Have an opportunity so like the example That I give in the book is um Of um a dating advice column In the times where a woman's written in Saying Um I'm interested in BDSM I want to give It a go what shall I do and the reply is Basically well Obviously you know consent is very Important and men have to respect your

Consent given therefore what you should Do is you should go on the internet and You should advertise the fact that you Really want to be strangled and then you Should invite men to contact you and Then you should go to their house and Have consensual Strangling sex together And you know that it's incumbent on them To respect your consent and I'm like yes It is incumbent on them to respect your Concern however what do you think is Going to happen if you go on the Internet and say I really fancy a Strange man strangling me in his house Like I just it just the light The impracticality of that kind of Politics yeah drives me around around The bend you know because I'm like I I agree that it should be possible I Mean it should be possible for us to do All sorts of things without like having To protect against Bad actors But It seems like it's only in this area Where we we basically insist that young Women should fake it till they make it Fake it till they make it they should Behave as if There are no Bad actors because they Have a right to behave as if there are No Bad actors In the hope that down the line There won't be any more and men will all

Be taught not to rape and then it will Be safe yeah but I can't just like Sacrifice the bodies of these exactly Yeah exactly Yeah Um One of uh One of my friends who looked at your uh The the the final listen to your mother Chapter can I describe this Um Said that it's it's it's it sounded like The advice is quite defeatist and not Particularly empowering to women yeah I Wonder what would be your response to That yeah defeatist is sometimes the Expression I've heard Um hetero pessimism this is home I've Heard as well pessimism I mean basically Just I think that there has been I think that There is increasingly a feeling Um among feminists of all stripes and Men and women of all Stripes that like There is something wrong with the sexual Culture that people aren't very happy Um men and women that sexual violence Has not gone away by any means and maybe This the whole kind of Freedom Experiment Hasn't worked out very well And I think that the The very utopian style of thinking In the second wave

The idea that we can tear down the Family and we can kind of Re-socialize everyone and and live in Like new experimental ways I think was Very Very Valiant and very interesting but Also pretty much failed utterly and I Think that the point that we've well the Point that I've got to at least in Thinking about all of this stuff over so Many years is to think look I think that I think that actually what we're faced With is a much more difficult challenge Than we might previously have recognized I think that some of this stuff is baked In To an alarming degree it doesn't mean It's hopeless but it does I think mean That we have to be kind of working Around reality Rather than trying to redesign Society On the back of an envelope Which also means that if we're looking For systems that seem to be more or less Protective and produce more or less good And bad outcomes what we have to choose From is not the status quo and some like Imagined perfect alternative or we Actually have to choose from is the Status quo and other Alternatives that Have been trying tested in previous Times and places because those are ones That have actually Worked like if you're imagining a

Utopian system that no one has ever Tried before There's probably a reason for that it's Probably because it's not actually Possible Um can I take a quick tangent before we Come back to the action points um Another particular controversial thing That you say in the book uh is that uh Basically and feel free to correct my Paraphrasing but all BDSM is basically Bad yeah Um and uh I was on a I was in group Holiday with some friends a few days ago And we were talking about the book Because we were doing this interview and They were all like oh come on like you Know I can be a totally nice guy uh but You know still have some like you know It's it's consensual and like BDSM is a Thing and like clearly I'm into it and She's into it and it's like sometimes we Swap roles and stuff yeah uh so it felt To be controversial to say like yeah Louise position seems to be that like Actually it's it's it's always bad so What's what's going on there Um I mean I think it's bad at several Different levels Um I work for a campaign group called we Can't consent to this Um what we do is we document cases where Um women have been killed in the UK UK Women have been killed and their Killers

Have claimed in court that they Consented to violence which they Consented to the violence which led to Their deaths so like the sex game gone Wrong defense the reason that um my Friend and colleague Mackenzie founded The campaigners because she'd noticed That this was becoming something you'd See in the papers more more often and so She went away and actually documented How often this defense strategy was Being used and found that it was Becoming more frequent and also that it Was being used often with success so men Were able to it's always been men who Use this defense we've never found an Example of a woman using it Um they're able to get to get away with A man's thought of conviction rather Than a murder conviction are able to get Very short sentence you know something Three years or something right for Taking a woman's life this is what we're Talking about and the problem with this Defense is that the the woman isn't There to give her side of it necessarily And very often what you're talking about In these cases is like Uh a man who's picked prostitutes a man Who seems to have had like a long-term Abusive relationship with his girlfriend Um you know all sorts of scenarios which Actually look indistinguishable from Just like normal femicide but they're

Able in retrospect to spin this Narrative and say oh she was asking for It and she can't she can't say otherwise And the fact is with BDSM that actually But that is what it looks like from the Outside there is no way of telling Without knowing what's going on in People's minds that this is whether this Is domestic violence or whether this is Consensual Buddhism they look identical And from a from a legal perspective That's very difficult how are you Supposed to tell the difference one of The cases I talk about in the book which Is an important piece of English case Law Emmett involves a woman who suffered Terrible injuries Inflicted by her husband went to the Doctor because she needed treatment and The doctor very unusually violated Patient potentiality and reported this To the police When it came to court she refused to Testify Either way Her husband claimed that she'd consented To it as part of Sex and the court Believed him and I think Maybe that's true My Spidey sensors tell me that it that It isn't right like what's actually Going on there is domestic abuse and the Nature of domestic abuse is such that Women are what any victim of domestic

Abuse male or female will often say that They can censor things and will often be You know Lulled into a false narrative spun by The abuser because that's the nature of Psychological abuse that it wears you Down and that it and it did it Um dissuades you from leaving or from Objecting or from you know the Psychological component of domestic Abuse is just as just as Um Just as permissive and just as Dangerment dangerous as the physical Element And I think that this is the problem That you get to with BDSM I mean I I Can accept in theory that there are People who genuinely do it with absolute Consent and are entirely responsible and There is really no harm done to anyone Involved But also in practice there are so many People you can find who have been Previously part of you know the BDSM Community and have had terrible Experiences and will say in retrospect That they were taking advantage of that They you know that they that there was Mental illness at play often that there Are like varying degrees of coercion and Abuse that are often quite subtle And this is and I think that the more This is normalized and made mainstream

The more incidences like that you will Come up with I mean so something like Choking for instance which is now 20 years ago was really neat she was a Niche within the BDSM Community I mean Like responsible BDSM practitioners will Say that the choking is actually really Dangerous and you shouldn't mess around With it Um and yet now it's on the front page of Every porn platform in the world it's Completely mainstream you've got I can't Remember the numbers exactly but it's Something like half of women in their 20s or say that they've been choked by a Partner at some point you know and some Of those women are consenting some of Them not But that's what's going to happen if you Make it a really mainstream thing you're Going to end up with this being Like a routine part of sex and once Something is part of the sexual script Like it's considered to be a normal A normal thing then the default setting Is to do it the default setting is to Say yes even if you're not sure and Actually it makes you feel bad and I Think as well that it I would say as well for For men who do it men who are asked to Do it by their Partners I mean that's Something that I hear often you know but My girlfriend asked me to choke her

I'd say I mean her motivation for being Asked to choked I mean it's partly to do With the fact that um A lot of women do are are turned on by Like a bit of submission right That's very common it probably has Something to do with Evolution it's like It's it is much much more common for Women to take the sub role than the Dom Role in any kind of video scenario and Vice versa with men Um I don't think that's necessarily a Very like I don't necessarily a terrible Thing we have to dissuade people from Doing but I also think that like choking Is a really bad manifestation of that Instinct it's like a particularly Um particularly aggressive and Particularly risky thing to do it's Difficult to kill someone accidentally Through choking insects but it is quite Easy to injure someone and in general It's just not something you want to be Encouraging it's extremely gendered form Of violence is the second most common Form of murder used by men against women In this country and overwhelmingly Victims of non-fatal strangulation It's in domestic relationships it's Female victims male perpetrators right So like it's just it's not good news and The problem with normalizing it is that I think as well for men like it Re-inscribes

Dysfunctional arousal patterns If that makes sense which is I think a Problem with porn as well I think this Idea that like Our sexual desires are fixed in quality And quantity and what you have to do is Just like siphon off your sexual energy In a like periodically I think that's Wrong I think actually we need to Understand this as being like a feedback Loop Um I mean I don't mean feedback Luke Bryan This is being reinforced by orgasm And if you are like If you are Um Inscribing in your own mind the fact That choking is your thing choking turns You on you're gonna like want more and More of it you're gonna end up going Down an increasingly dysfunctional Road This is one of the reasons why men using Porn often ends up being really bad for The men even though I think porn has Other problems but you know just in Terms of the user experience is because You end up like Your sexual desires become weirder and Weirder Because you're exposed to weirder stuff And you kind of reward the stimulus And you end up potentially going down a Really like Grim road which the porn Platforms are perfectly designed to

Encourage yeah And there's the thing that you say here Of um You know I think this one is Particularly uncontroversial chivalry is Actually a good thing we all have to Control our sexual desires and Men Particularly so given their greater Physical strength and have average Higher sex drives Um then the point after that is Sometimes they're not always you can Readily spot sexually aggressive men There are a handful of personality Traits that are common to them Impulsivity promiscuity hyper Masculinity and disagreeableness these Traits in combination should put you on Your guard I wonder if you can just kind Of like elaborate on that what did like How I I guess how Typecast is the sexual offender sexual Assault or kind of vibe Um so that combination of traits I think Comes quite clearly from the literature Looking at um sex men is in prison and How they tend to differ from the general Population and those traits are more Likely to be found in its exponents in Prison obviously you're not going to be Quite representative sex offenders Because only about one percent of sex Managers go to prison Um so they're not going to be

Perfectly representative that is a Suggest that there is a there is a trend Yeah in that regards so one of the one Of the interesting things I thought About that list hyper masculinity Disagreeableness impulsivity Um maybe not promiscuity uh but at least But certainly those three uh sort of Seem Somewhat similar to kind of the dark Triad traits that yeah dark trades for a Great predictor of sexual aggression Which seemed to be particularly Attractive to particularly younger women Yeah and so it seems like we have this Weird it's a bit unfortunate yes what's Going on there Um yeah I don't know why they would be But yes it does appear to be the case That some dark trial traits can improve Your prospects on The Dating Market Um I guess in terms of being You're effective at manipulating people Things like that yeah and so I guess if You were giving action points to your Daughter or something it would be a case Of even though you might find these men Somewhat more attractive sometimes yeah Then but actually this is you know when You're 18 19 17 you don't necessarily Know what's good for you so like you Know be a little bit careful please is This is that the kind of vibe yes I mean Just anecdotally I don't know about

Research on this but um I think that there's a lot of variation Between women in terms of how much women Are attracted to the doctor I trade so I Personally have never found them Attractive but clearly anecdotally it's The case that some women do like the Kind of the bad boy image and it is a Yeah it's it's a it's a risky combo In terms of the risk of sexual Aggression hmm One of the uh one of the other ones is Uh and again somewhat controversial Don't use dating apps mutual friends Convert histories and punish bad Behavior dating apps can't I totally get the rationale here because Mutual friends can indeed vet histories And punish bad behaviors but dating apps Can't and yet if we look at the stats it Seems like you know the majority of Couples are now meeting or dating apps Yes do you actually are you actually Advocating for a blanket bounded dating Apps for or or something yeah I mean I Think the base I I think people probably Do mostly agree with me that they're not They're not the best way I think the Problem you've got though is that now People are so it's so much become the Norm yeah they're doing anything else is Difficult although I do have female Friends who've like made a conscious Decision not to use dating apps because

Actually it's not worth it I mean I've Just I've just actually filed an essay On this Um and I spoke to loads of friends in Depth about their experience of using The apps and like one friend told me I Was really struck by this because she's Like Super beautiful super attractive in Every possible way Has been on the apps for years and years Still hasn't found a boyfriend and she Said that of 95 of the dates she's been On when she's met via apps have not Ended have not had a second date And another friend who said as well that She she tried the apps just they weren't Working and then she ended up actually Having a relationship with someone who Initially she'd seen his spoke who was a Mutual friend link she initially she'd Seen his photo and thought and like Thanks and she met him and was really Attracted to him and it worked out Really well and both saying like I don't Think the apps are very good I mean They're good in the sense that they give You access to a very wide pool Particularly if you're in London or Something like there are so many single People within your vicinity but in terms Of quality I don't know and I think also that Because I mean we spoke about the whole

Hypogamy problem on the apps but also The apps they tend to encourage a sort Of anonymous Vibe which encourages bad behavior Um if you don't have any link to anyone Like There are basically no consequences if You misbehave Um everything from ghosting through to Sexual assault or basically no Consequences and so like I totally get The appeal and I also totally get the Fact that I'm like happily married so It's easy for me to say this I didn't Meet my husband by the apps but also That was the period before they were Normal Um Equally though I think like the Downsides are pretty Stark and again I Think particularly for women if you're One of these guys who are getting Thousands of like matches on Tinder it's Going to be pretty hard to resist yeah But I guess as women like I I mean every single woman that I've Ever spoken to has had one or more or Even more than 10 bad experiences on Dating apps oh yeah whereas very few men I know but would have said that they had A bad experience because I guess like Kind of worst case scenario for a dude Is it's the date is kind of boring right What's getting all right for a woman

It's just like really bad it's like a Serial killer yeah that you um there's This film I can't remember what it's Called there was this film that came out Last year or earlier this year Um that was about Um a woman who meets a guy on a dating App and all seems to be going well but Then it turns out he's actually a Cannibal serial killer Who like kills women and sells their Meat on the black market And it's supposed to be accommodate this Film yeah apparently it's I have not Actually seen the whole thing but Apparently it's it's like horrific to Watch but I thought it was really Interesting that this it was female Writer female director it's very much Like told from the female perspective And I thought it was really interesting That this was like what the female Imagination collectively was coming up With there's like the the film about Dating apps because obviously it's Everyone it's everyone's worst nightmare But it's also I think expressive it's Just like a general Horror when I text when I text a few my Friends earlier this week because I was Writing this essay to ask for quotes About Tinder and because it's the 10th Anniversary of Tinder oh right yeah I Was just like inundated with

Their terrible let me list all the like Horrible things I've experienced on them Yeah so now yeah Um I guess last thing I'd like to ask You about so um you have uh recent well I guess a year and a bit ago had uh a Baby son yeah Um and you have like action points for What you would tell your daughter or uh But do you yeah do you have any action Points for what you would tell your son How like you know how should men behave In the sexual and dating Marketplace so It is something that I've not really Written about it but it is something That my husband and I talk about a lot Because obviously our son's a toddler so It's not irrelevant but it's something It's something to think about as a Parent I think that um I think that it is really important to Channel Um Like youthful male energy which is which Is like a different thing from you know If we're accepting the men and women We're in a different thesis right we're Accepting that Um men again have higher Sex Drive is Generally higher energy aggression all This kind of stuff like You can't suppress that and I don't Think you I don't think it's wise to try But you can Channel it in Positive

Directions so it's like one of the Things that my husband is personally Very keen on is martial arts and Um he's done on like kickboxing and Boxing over the years and he thinks it's Very important for boys to do that like Girls too it's fine I've done a bit of Martial arts as well like it's good fun It's good exercise but he thinks it's Really important for boys because it's a Way of like taking that instinct towards Fighting and being like destructive and Energetic and whatever and and taming it And making it a positive thing And I think that principle in general Is a good one yeah your relation to boys Um I guess there is one thing I want to End with which is um in the book let me See if I can find it uh you've got this Sort of list of four questions Uh that women should ask themselves and That mentions themselves um I don't know If you can run them off the top of your Head but I'll I kind of crowdsourced Them from people who are from Friends ah Here we go this is this this is a this Is a good one I did it because people Love quizzes yeah people do love quizzes Um so I'll just kind of read this out by Kind of quoting quoting from the book And then I just love for you to kind of Riff on these for men and women and Listeners or viewers can answer these Questions for themselves and uh feel

Whatever you want to feel Um so uh if you're a woman who's had Casual sexual relationships with when in The past you might try answering the Following questions as honestly as you Can one did you consider your virginity To be an embarrassing burden you wanted To be rid of Two do you ever feel disgusted when you Think about conceptual consensual sexual Experiences you've had in the past three Have you ever become emotionally Attached to a casual sexual partner and And concealed this attachment from him And four have you ever done something Sexually that you found painful or Unpleasant and concealed this discomfort From your partner either during sex or Afterwards And you're going to say that if your Score is zero then congratulations You're high sociosexuality and good luck Have allowed you to successfully Navigate a treacherous sex sexual Marketplace but if you answered yes to Any of these questions as I suspect you Probably did you are entitled to feel Angry at a sexual culture that has set You up to fail Yeah I guess having having done 50 of These podcast interviews now how do you How do you feel about these questions And this is actually the first time Anyone's brought them up but I because I

Think yeah I think those are I Source Those questions from talking to lots and Lots of friends Um many of whom had had sort of gone Through this journey that I describe of You know previously basically like Relying on COPE in relation to So the like casual sex is empowering Narrative Um and then later being like I can't believe I put up with that I Can't believe that I you know believed All of that and I think that those Questions do sort of drill down into That Self-deception Factor Which is very difficult what you want to Think I'm doing this for myself I I sincerely want this but actually Yeah yeah Yeah and I think uh one of one of the Things when I want to just kind of run Run these questions by by a few friends Is that like basically the answer from Men for all of those questions is just Like well obviously not like it's it's Just not even a thing it's not even a Consideration almost and yet it clearly Is for like every single female friend That I've run this question but has Always been like oh yeah what's that Average score Um I didn't say I didn't I didn't I was

Just like more than yeah not zero Um yeah yeah uh there was there was one You had aha uh where's one for men Said that male one's like yeah again Crowdsourced from male friends who were Pretty Shifty about it but yeah Um I I persuaded them here we go Um so you kind of talk about this uh This situation where it's it's sort of Like friends with benefits and the woman Has quote feelings for the man and the Man's just like that he kind of knows But he's always seems it seems a bit Surprised but like what really she she Caught feelings what I had no idea Um and you say that uh these men seem to Be genuinely bewildered by the fact that The women that they have been having sex With for many months are unhappy in These pseudo relationships and the women Seem to have drifted into this Arrangement not realizing how little Regard that Partners really have for Them this is a tragedy of mutual Incomprehension however I cannot help But Harbor a sneaking suspicion that Many men perhaps all do realize that Operating in quote CAD mode is not Actually harmless male readers who have Ever had heterosexual casual sex might Like to ask themselves these questions Are counterpart to the questions I Addressed to female readers earlier in The chapter

1. have you ever had sex with a woman You'd be embarrassed to introduce to Your friends Two have you ever failed to contact a Woman after sex three have you ever Suspected that your casual partner was Becoming emotionally attached to you and Failed either and failed either to Commit or to break off the relationship And four have you ever encouraged a Woman to do something sexually even Though she showed reluctance the answer To all of these questions ought to be no But a culture of casual sex incentivizes Men to do such things and generally with No social penalty if anything men who [ __ ] and Chuck quote good time only Women can often expect to increase their Social status among their male peers at Least in the short term Yeah shift your responses there yeah Yeah again very much non-zero yeah very Much feeling like Like again this Aziz and sorry situation Yeah it's just so ridiculously common Yeah that yeah and I remember when that Article came out it was like a real like Oh My God moment for like everyone I Know who read that article because Everyone knew that it was such a common Situation and the language of consent Was it not appropriate to actually be Able to have that conversation which is Probably one of the good things to come

Out of me too in that I think that there Probably weren't men who were paying Attention to it and who maybe were doing This stuff on a mild level who were like Oh man I'm like I'm slightly guilty of This I think the only problem though is That in general when we're sort of Um Trying to appeal to men in this way the Men who are listening are the ones who Are already pretty good like Harvey Wines he doesn't care yeah right like He's not listening Um and obviously there is there is it's A good thing to nudge men who are like Like well-intentioned towards behaving Better but there is an extent to which Like the guys who are listening in the Guys who are already on board yeah So you do Um anyway thank you very much Any final piece of advice you would give To any young men or women listening to This or watching this podcast that's Quite a lot in the book I mean my Sometimes people ask me what's my like One underlying advice to women and I Think what it is is the problem is Sexual The polynomial feminism and sex positive Feminism as as an ideology is that it Really discourages women from listening To their instincts and if anything You're

Because the pressure is only to be Open-minded tolerant like not to be hung Up on like silly traditionalism and all Of this kind of stuff Um that can translate when it's combined With female agreeableness as we Discussed earlier in the show women more Agreeable than men on average it can Translate into just like suppressing Feelings of distress And anxiety And trying to train yourself out of Those responses and I think no if like If you're if your instinctive response Is any kind of distress Any ideology that tells you that you Shouldn't be listening to that is not a Good ideology to follow So I guess that's my like That's the basis of all of this trust Your gut listen to your instance don't Let's Society tell you that your gut is In fact wrong yeah pretty much nice well Thank you very much thank you so much All right so that's it for this week's Episode of Deep dive thank you so much For watching or listening all the links And resources that we mentioned in the Podcast are going to be linked down in The video description or in the show Notes depending on where you're watching Or listening to this if you're listening To this on a podcast platform then do Please leave us a review on the iTunes

Store it really helps other people Discover the podcast or if you're Watching this in full HD or 4k on YouTube then you can leave a comment Down below and ask any questions or any Insights or any thoughts about the Episode that would be awesome and if you Enjoyed this episode you might like to Check out this episode here as well Which links in with some of the stuff That we talked about in the episode so Thanks for watching uh do hit the Subscribe button if you aren't already And I'll see you next time bye

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