What Are The Odds That Christian Grey Would Graduate From College?
I admit it: I am male, straight, and have read Fifty Shades of Grey. Something that over fifty million people have read must have something to it, right? In fact, there are some interesting questions raised by the book.
Christian Grey, the male sex interest, is a masochist. At the tender age of fifteen, an older female neighbor, who was also a masochist, seduced him and imparted her sexual preferences on him. He grew to become a multi-millionaire entrepreneur by twenty-seven, when he meets Ana, the protagonist, during a college interview. He is a control freak who abstains from all vices (other than freaky sex of course, if sex is really a vice) and has no friends other than business associates. Throughout all this, the book makes references to Christian’s college experience and his philanthropy toward college-related causes. However, it’s really hard to believe that Christian Grey would have even considered attending college, let alone graduating from it.
Seriously, what would Christian Grey do at college? Party? Let’s see: he went from being a solitary MILF-involved teenager to a solitary teetotaler near-billionaire at twenty-five. Is it really plausible that he spent his college years drinking with his fraternity brothers?*
Christian is the third from the right…NOT.
Would he go to study? You mean, would a control freak like Christian really sit in lecture halls and memorize tedious facts for four (or more) years? Anyway, business leaders usually seem to be self-directed. Business is on finding solutions for specific problems, which Christian can easily get from the Internet, library, and experts in their fields.
Would he go to college to make connections and network? Would he go to get a job? He already had a job before. He stayed a loner afterward. Next question, please.
Would he go because he felt he had to broaden his horizons? Or for self-actualization? Many people feel this way. Kids are force-fed the college ideal for such a long time that many feel they have no other options towards a good life. But Christian was a cougar-loving businessman by sophomore year in high school. It’s likely he already knew there are multiple paths to that “good life.”
Why does the author repeatedly insist that Christian has a degree? Because he is a fantasy, and a college degree is a reliable status symbol for the modern American woman. A study done by Professors Anthony Cox and Maryanne Fisher showed that the male sex interests in romance novels are “congruent” with women’s evolved sexual preferences. In short, romance novels are porn for chicks.
Let’s be honest: for dudes as well. This stuff is HAWT.
The problem is that him having the degree brings everything else into question; it is highly unlikely that Christian Grey would both have a college degree and be a multigajillionaire at age 25. According to Paul Graham, one of the founders of seed capital firm Y Combinator: “Statistically, if you want to avoid failure [when starting up a company], it would seem like the most important thing is to quit your day job.” Umm, excuse me, but college is probably worse than a day job. Fifteen credit hours plus an extra twenty-five per week studying is sort of normal, perhaps even on the low side for your average serious student. And can Christian do anything not seriously?
Christian Grey was himself before college, and remained himself after it. The collegiate dream is just that, a dream, if you want a Christian Grey.
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*Author’s note: I mean no disrespect to fraternity pledges, college professors, or college students, many of whom are good friends and family.
Originally published at www.beyonddrums.com.