What does Steve Harvey Know About Relationships?

My intent is not to pick on Steve Harvey personally, because I’m sure he is no worse, or better, than any of us.  I just chose him as one example, out of many I could have selected, to illustrate my point.

In this month’s issue of Essence magazine [Jan 2011], Steve Harvey was on the cover (again). The supporting article introduced Steve’s latest book: Straight Talk, No Chaser: How to Find, Keep, and Understand a Man. The promotional copy says for Steve’s latest reads; “Steve Harvey proves once again that he is the king of relationships.”  I don’t know anything about Steve’s personal life; I really only care how funny he is when I go to see him perform.  However when I read Essence’s article, I learned that Steve is on his 3rd marriage and has four children by 3 different women.  If being the “King of Relationships” is measured by the sheer quantity then I guess the crown is warranted.

Personally, if I’d be more interested in learning how to obtain, develop and maintain a quality relationship from someone who has actually accomplished the feat or at least studied the issue in a meaningful manner.

Of course I realize a non-celebrity would not likely of make the NY Times Bestsellers List by offering advice on the relationships.  Steve Harvey can make the NY Times list and bring attention to the issue, with solutions, in a way that few others can. 

Presumably, it should make no difference who delivers the message assuming the advice is sound. So I guess I should stop ranting and be glad someone can do this, very necessary work, and benefit others.

Then again, maybe everyone behind this effort is simply capitalizing off Steve’s celebrity, offering questionable advice to troubled, vulnerable people too fixated on celebrity to know better.  As a book seller, I too will make money off of this book.  I’m pretty confident Straight Talk will be a bestselling book on AALBC.com as was Steve’s first book on the subject, Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man: What Men Really Think about Love Relationships, Intimacy and Commitment.

In any case, we expect far too much from our celebrities.   Athletes are expected to be model citizens and create jobs in the community while comedians, with multiple failed marriages, are expected to be able to offer sage advice on relationships.

Troy

Troy D. Johnson is the President, founder and webmaster of AALBC.com, LLC (The African American Literature Book Club). Launched in March of 1998, AALBC.com has grown to become the largest and most frequently visited website dedicated to books and films by and about people of African descent.

9 thoughts on “What does Steve Harvey Know About Relationships?

  • December 9, 2010 at 12:11 pm
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    Very interesting topic. I had no idea that Steve had been married 3 times and had children with 3 different women. However, I do feel that anyone with experience can certainly lend some to those who have none (or less). I haven’t read the first book, nor do I plan to. Same with his second. Not because I don’t feel that he’s legitimate, but only because I detest books that offer relationship advice. I just think there’s more than one way to skin a cat and I’ll just stick to the Steve Harvey Morning Show for my daily dose of Steve… If anyone gains insight or learns from his books, kudos to him for his ability to inspire. Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this blog as well as information I wasn’t aware of…

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    • December 9, 2010 at 4:01 pm
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      Yeah when I read that about Steve I had to do a double take especially in the context of a lay person a book deal from a major publisher and touted as an “expert”.

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  • December 9, 2010 at 12:34 pm
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    Thank you, Troy. I knew I wasn’t that crazy, because I’ve thought the same thing for some time. I own the book, bought one for a friend as well, even interviewed Mr. Harvey when he hosted the ABC Nightline Town Hall discussion *cough* about why black women..*cough* here’s a snippet of my article on that celeb relationship guru fest that was featured in Hope for Women Magazine. http://hopeforwomenmag.com/relationships/why-we-wont-settle

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    • December 9, 2010 at 4:18 pm
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      Dee I read your Blog post and most of the comments. It was an excellent exchange. I’d put Hill Harper in the same category with Steve. A lay person positioned as an expert because of celebrity.

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  • December 9, 2010 at 2:46 pm
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    How about from this angle -> Harvey is speaking from his perspective on the behalf of those men who operate the same way he does. Are there a lot of men like Harvey? I would say they exist in direct proportion to the women who are attracted to them. So for those women – this is like an operator’s manual. Am I attracted to men like Steve Harvey? Nope – so this wouldn’t be the book for me. When Will Smith writes a book “how to get a man like me -and be willing to put in the work necessary to have a successful marriage, partnership, family like Jada, the children and me ” Let’s just say it might as well be the new I-phone because I’m going to be the first in line. Wait overnight if I have to just to get my hands on the book. lol

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    • December 9, 2010 at 4:21 pm
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      Mel LOL! I’m sure if Will Smith wanted to write that book, he’d get a 7 figure deal (at least a really deep 6 figure one) from a major publisher.

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  • December 10, 2010 at 5:31 pm
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    I was having a bad day . . . a very bad day the day my latest edition of Essence arrived and the last thing I needed to see was Steve Harvey’s face on the cover (again). So, I did exactly what I said I’d do the last time he was on there talking about relationships and how I need to think like a man, I screamed. I’m a woman and I like thinking like one. When I saw this blog title flash across twitter, I wondered, did I write that out loud. No, no, you did and seriously reiterated what I’d been thinking in your post. I already knew that he’d been married a few times and the kid count, all of which in my opinion, shot his credibility and made it hard for me to read the first book, although I skimmed it. More power to Steve, but I would prefer if he focused his relationship guru-ism on the fellas with a book that could perhaps be titled, Don’t Be Like Me, Learn From Me. Run down those mistakes Steve and perhaps offer some guidance to our young gents coming up.

    Next, I read Dee’s blog post as well and as a single, successful, Christian sister … I agree with your twin brother David! Bingo! My grandmother had to settle, my mother has settled a bit herself, and I tried, but I just can’t do it, not even under the threat of loneliness because I fear unhappiness much more. I have a pretty good idea of what I desire in a man (now) and since writing helps me to organize my thoughts, I wrote this poem called Brink of Submission about the guy I’d throw caution in the wind for, feel free to listen to what this (and others) single, successful, sister needs http://www.nakiarlaushaul.com.

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    • December 11, 2010 at 12:21 pm
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      Nakia, nice website. You should enter your video into our book trailer contest: http://aalbc.com/authors/bestbooktrailer2010.html

      Of course you and Dee are right regarding relationships. It is not rocket science. It is just ashame that we give so much attention to the wrong things…

      You all should continue to make your voices heard. If you agree with my comments please forward them to others and add to it. The more young ladies that hear what you have to say the better.

      Reply

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