Blindboy Boatclub is the feminist icon young men need
‘Feminism is a very necessary thing for young men to have’
Ireland, historically, has always been known as the land of saints and scholars. Be it the works of Joyce, Wilde, Yeats, or the early Christian manuscripts like the Book of Kells housed in Trinity College.
We have both saint and scholar in Blindboy Boatclub, the modern day political poet from Limerick. He appeared on the Late Late Show on RTE nearly a year ago, and told us the struggles of modern living. “My generation can’t afford to buy houses. My generation is either leaving the country or jumping in rivers.”
To riotous applause, he’s clearly hitting home, and hitting hard.
Continuing his well documented history discussing progressive politics, he appeared again on the Late Late show on Friday night.
The majority of his activism has been centralised around mental health issues, and he begins by said: “A lot of the mental health issues…are happening with young men. I personally think that what these young men need is feminism.”
I had never before perceived the two issues to be related, but Blindboy quickly justified his theory: “Because, when I’m down in Limerick, when I actually speak to [young men] and get to the core of ‘what’s bothering you man’, what they always say to me is ‘I have nothing to offer a woman.'”
He goes on to criticise this as a patriarchal concept; one that is no longer relevant in 21st Century society. To make the connection between poor mental health, and patriarchal ideas of needing to be the breadwinner in a relationship, is groundbreaking, and creates something in modern day feminism for young men to relate to.
Blindboy also puts to bed the repetitive argument that feminism isn’t about equality, telling Ryan Tubridy “I would say to any young men out there, feminism is not about a female being powerful, it’s about redressing a balance, and it’s about equality”
Part of the interview is on YouTube, and you can watch the segment with this part of the interview here if you want to see it for yourself.
He leaves us with a simple test to see if you as a young man are up to speed on feminism or not “Let a woman pay for your dinner and see how you feel about that. If you’re cool with that you’re a feminist. If you’re not, you need to look at yourself.”
In Ireland, politics and art have always been linked, you need only to skim through through Yeats’ Easter 1916, or see Brendan Behan’s play The Quare Fellow. Blindboy is the politico-poet for modern Ireland, and he’s got this feminists backing for sure.