Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Review: The Three Marks of Manhood

Disclaimer: There are three appendixes at the end of the book. I haven't read them yet so I can't vouch for them. But the rest was outstanding.

I honestly meant to write a full book review on this title but I am busy preparing for something big this week and will going away next week. So there is a lot to do. However I believe I can do the book justice in short order.

This book is the answer. I loved it. In it G.C. Dilsaver presents to us the ideal of Christian Patriarchy, that a man is to be the priest, prophet, and king of his family. The book is very direct and extremely well written. Every man - married, engaged, or single should pick this one up today. It is particularly good for a young man starting out in life. I wish it had existed 10 or 15 years ago and that someone would have smacked me over the head with it and said "read this." But guys, a word of caution, if you are already married or engaged, it could be tough for you and especially your ladies. The results will be worth it though.

Mr. Dilsaver presents men as they should be and its refreshing. Everyone knows our society has been emasculated but nobody seems to know what to do about it. If you even suggest familial patriarchy today, you are ridiculed...even by other men.

Have you ever heard someone joke that once you get married you find out who really wears the pants in the family? Usually the person in pants turns out to the be overbearing wife who constantly chastises the lazy husband who continues in perpetual state of adolescence. I have also just described to you nearly every sitcom on television. That is what this book addresses. And it addresses it in a way that I believe will frankly reverse course most if not all of the problems facing the Church today.

There are too many interesting points in the book to go over here. But I'll bring one up which I found interesting. In discussing chastity in marriage Mr. Dilsaver says that it is necessary for a man to be chaste in his marriage because otherwise he becomes essentially enslaved to his wife. Living in an unchaste marriage actually hurts a man's patriarchal status. He also discusses how to educate and bring up sons to become their Christian patriarchs themselves.

However strong the book is in many ways, I found the last chapter a bit deflating. The chapter titled "The Heart of the Home" is all about the ideal wife. Men, if you buy this, do not let your wife or fiancee read this chapter until you have implemented everything else in the book. (I jest.) Single guys wait until you have quite literally rescued your true love from her castle. That woman probably won't mind either way. To give you a small hint: One of the footnotes in it suggests that women should not leave the house and presume her husbands consent to do so. ... I know, I know. The women reading this just recoiled. But see thats because you haven't read the rest of the book...

...which you should do. And frankly, women, if your husband is not living up to his patriarchal Christian duties, take this book and smack him over the head with it.

I hope to write more on this book soon.


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the review sir. Sounds like a worthwhile read and I've added it to my reading list. Thanks again!

Sonny said...

Thanks for the heads-up. I am familiar with this author's work in Thomistic clinical psychology and look forward to reading this more spiritual and domestic foray. By the way, I believe it is Doctor Dilsaver as opposed to Mister.

mdwoodbury said...


I am very impressed with the book review and the book itself too. Dillsaver is a bold and courageous man who speaks the truth. I just finished reading the three marks and it goes up there with the top shelf along with "Theology and Sanity" by Frank Sheed. There are just some books that are written like orange juice concentrate. They however, take lots of time to dissolve and that is the way I like it. Keep up the Renaissance Matt. We need to discuss other matters too.

"The whole truth is generally the ally of virtue; a half-truth is always the ally of some vice." - G.K. Chesterton