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 Topic: Confusion over feminism

 (Read 1271 times)
  • 12 Next page « Previous thread | Next thread »
  • Confusion over feminism
     OP - February 24, 2012, 03:42 AM

    I'm not entirely sure of what I write here but bear with me. Quite a while ago, I did something completely shameful as to not take into account all the good work that various feminists do but make a moot point that makes every one of them looks bad. Now I realise that under the definition, if I am against the mistreatment of women in the Muslim world , I am already in agreement with feminism without saying but what I am concerned about is the psychology behind it all as to why I did what I did and why some men are still persistent about the idea that feminism is not worthy of consideration. Some of them do have a questionable approach towards women. What do you think makes them that way? I personally feel that some of them have not really had the opportunity to be in contact with many women and some of them, for integral purposes, view the opposite sex as deplorable because of bad luck. Dunning-Kruger effect aside, what do you think are the possible causes of this behaviour?

    Edit: Forgot to add the fact that quite a few feminists fight against male patriarchy that affects certain types of males themselves who don't fit into a desirable category.

    "I measured the skies, now the shadows I measure,
    Sky-bound was the mind, earth-bound the body rests."
    [Kepler's epitaph]
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #1 - February 24, 2012, 03:54 AM

    This should be fun. popcorn

    If you think your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #2 - February 24, 2012, 04:08 AM

    This should be fun. popcorn


    Did I do something stupid again?

    "I measured the skies, now the shadows I measure,
    Sky-bound was the mind, earth-bound the body rests."
    [Kepler's epitaph]
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #3 - February 24, 2012, 04:10 AM

    No. It's a fair question. I can just see there being quite an argument over the exact cause.

    If you think your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #4 - February 24, 2012, 06:54 AM

    I don't quite understand the que but if I may add a comment. I think this sort of 'misunderstanding' is more misinformation that is spread and absorbed by the masses quickly. Just look at misinformation out there on climate change, evolution, immigration, socialism etc etc. Feminism seems to be another where everyone has an opinion but few know or understand anything about it.

    I may have missed your point. Sorry if I did.

    "Nobody who lived through the '50s thought the '60s could've existed. So there's always hope."-Tuli Kupferberg

    What apple stores are like.....

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S8QmZWv-eBI
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #5 - February 24, 2012, 07:32 AM

    Me too, i didnt get his question but its worth something to argue about. Regarding Feminism, i only have problems with the ones that mistakes misandry for feminism because that makes them as equal as misogynists

    "I'm standing here like an asshole holding my Charles Dickens"
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #6 - February 24, 2012, 07:45 AM

    One of the interesting ideas is that there was a clear switch from matriarchal to patriarchal societies - Lilith and Gaia were replaced by Yahweh and Allah and Zeus.

    What is the name of God's wife again?  Asherah?

    Co-operative mutual ways replaced by hierarchies.

    http://newsfeed.time.com/2011/03/22/fertility-goddess-asherah-was-gods-wife-edited-out-of-the-bible/

    Quote
    Some scholars say early versions of the Bible featured Asherah, a powerful fertility goddess who may have been God’s wife.

    Research by Francesca Stavrakopoulou, a senior lecturer in the department of Theology and Religion at the University of Exeter, unearthed clues to her identity, but good luck finding mention of her in the Bible. If Stavrakopoulou is right, heavy-handed male editors of the text all but removed her from the sacred book.



    Read more: http://newsfeed.time.com/2011/03/22/fertility-goddess-asherah-was-gods-wife-edited-out-of-the-bible/#ixzz1nHdB3F00


    Does Islam have stories about a wife of Allah?



    When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.


    ― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #7 - February 24, 2012, 08:37 AM

    ^you tend to go off-topic a lot, what has this post got to do with this thread?

    "I'm standing here like an asshole holding my Charles Dickens"
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #8 - February 24, 2012, 08:41 AM

    I think moi means that it was that that created the patriachy and at the same downgraded women to second class citizens.  So moi is answering mchawking with an answer that spans back thousands of years.  But still a relevent comment since the complete lack of goddess worship could play a part.


    "I came into the world imbued with the will to find a meaning in things, my spirit filled with the desire to attain to the source of the world, and then I found that I was an object in the midst of other objects" - Fanon
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #9 - February 24, 2012, 08:47 AM

    You can't say it is that which created patriarchy, since that leaves the change in theology unexplained, and the change in theology came first. Wink

    If you think your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #10 - February 24, 2012, 08:51 AM

    Both patriarchy and theology arose along with the "private property" system, with the advent of the Neolithic Agricultural Revolution.

    "Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused."
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #11 - February 24, 2012, 08:59 AM

    I think moi means that it was that that created the patriachy and at the same downgraded women to second class citizens.  So moi is answering mchawking with an answer that spans back thousands of years.  But still a relevent comment since the complete lack of goddess worship could play a part.




    You mean the lack of Goddess in Islam is what is responsible for patriarchy?

    "I'm standing here like an asshole holding my Charles Dickens"
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #12 - February 24, 2012, 09:04 AM

    Well, I think it's not just the private property system or the agricultural revolution. For instance, Australian aboriginal culture is highly patriarchal but not at all agricultural. There's no reason to assume this form of society wasn't more widespread in the past either.

    Also, there are IIRC still some stone age cultures which do not know how fertilisation works in humans. IOW, they don't know about biological fatherhood. If you have a primitive culture which doesn't know about this aspect of biology then they'll naturally attribute descent to the mother. If they then became aware of what is actually happening, I think you could expect quite a shake up in that society.

    If you think your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #13 - February 24, 2012, 09:08 AM

    Aboriginal cultures, like all the others, have experienced diffusion over the millenia. As the world stands today, there really are no cultures or peoples who still exist in "pure" gatherer-hunter lifestyles, with no contact with any outsiders. We can only piece together how different groups and cultures have changed. It is pretty much unanimous in anthropological studies though that patriarchy, private property (which is practiced less severely in more nomadic, "un-developed" societies) and domination-based theology seem to emerge in tandem.

    "Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused."
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #14 - February 24, 2012, 09:11 AM

    When I say private property, I don't mean nobody eats or has shelter, but that the strict and compartmentalized way of cordoning off resources to the masses by the few. So if the hyenas took over the watering hole and all the other animals had to buy bottled water, that's the kind of private property that we see emerges during the neolithic times, along with greater segmentation of society based on gender, and religion which was originally used to make the masses WANT to let the elites control the resources (for they were "divine" representatives).

    "Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused."
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #15 - February 24, 2012, 09:12 AM

    Any more information on why this might be so? (meaning about #13)

    If you think your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #16 - February 24, 2012, 09:22 AM

    It's an ongoing question in anthropology. There are a few theories, most of which have problems that are being argued and analysed in anthro and other journals. The strongest theories are probably the ones based on environmental factors. Jared Diamond's book Guns Germs and Steeel is often cited as a good place to start, though there are some issues in that book that have been brought up in later books and journal articles.

    "Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused."
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #17 - February 24, 2012, 09:25 AM

    Some of the other theories are outlined in these two (pdf) documents:

    theories of civilization 1
    theories of civilization 2

    "Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused."
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #18 - February 24, 2012, 09:28 AM

    As to the question in the OP, I think it has to do with a lot simpler things, namely:

    1: resistance to change.
    2: male supremacy has been the norm for at least 10,000 years of human history in most cultures (some more than others).
    3: the idea of women having equal "rights" in terms of legal and economic status is only 50-100 years old.
    4: some men and women would like the old status quo back.

    "Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused."
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #19 - February 24, 2012, 09:29 AM

    I read Diamond's book ages ago, but don't recall anything relevant in it. I'll check out the pdf's.

    Although really we're a bit off topic now............

    If you think your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #20 - February 24, 2012, 09:30 AM

    As to the question in the OP, I think it has to do with a lot simpler things, namely:

    1: resistance to change.
    2: male supremacy has been the norm for at least 10,000 years of human history in most cultures (some more than others).
    3: the idea of women having equal "rights" in terms of legal and economic status is only 50-100 years old.

    Ahem. Celtic law. Wink

    If you think your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #21 - February 24, 2012, 09:32 AM

    As to the question in the OP, I think it has to do with a lot simpler things, namely:

    1: resistance to change.
    2: male supremacy has been the norm for at least 10,000 years of human history in most cultures (some more than others).
    3: the idea of women having equal "rights" in terms of legal and economic status is only 50-100 years old.
    4: some men and women would like the old status quo back.


    Wink

    "Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused."
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #22 - February 24, 2012, 09:33 AM

    Some of the other theories are outlined in these two (pdf) documents:

    theories of civilization 1
    theories of civilization 2

    Neither of those mention anything about patriarchal/matriarchal systems or theology.

    If you think your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #23 - February 24, 2012, 09:34 AM

    Wink

    Well you should have said 50-100 years in some cultures then. Grin

    If you think your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #24 - February 24, 2012, 09:49 AM

    LOL no those are about the emergence of civilization and the potential reasonings for the shift from gatherer-hunter societies, since that what you seemed to have asked (about #13).

    Here, this may be more along the lines of what you were asking.

    Quote
    Patriarchy was created at a specific time in history out of many complex processes
    involving demographic, ecological, cultural, and historical factors which developed
    as lifestyles changed and people adapted to new circumstances. These processes
    were dialectical processes which means they were mutually interactive, mutually
    reinforcing processes at the end of the Neolithic Era and the beginning of
    civilization. Some of these new lifestyles and processes, which eventually led to
    male dominance, were:

    • Men in herder tribes learned to domesticate animals during the Neolithic
    era; this meant they realized it took male and female to produce offspring. It
    is thought these herder men were the first men to realize their role in
    paternity.
    • These herder men were also the first humans to acquire the notion of private
    ownership - in this case the notion of private ownership of their own herds.
    (Before this time during the Paleolithic and Neolithic eras people had
    shared tools, land, and food.)
    • Once these men acquired the notion of private ownership they wanted to
    pass their herds down to their own blood progeny, and this was when they
    insisted women be virgins when they married and refrain from adultery after
    marriage
    • This began the first patriarchal families. Fredrich Engles, who set forth these
    ideas in his book written in the 1800’s, The Origin of the Family, Private
    Property and the State, called this the "historical defeat of the female sex."

    • Life at the end of the Neolithic Era included a phenomenon called by
    eminent anthropologist, Claude Levi-Strauss, the "Exchange of Women".
    This represented forms of trade where women were a commodity. It took
    several forms: 1. Negotiated marriage alliances between tribes or villages
    meant the forceful removal of women from their homelands. 2. Women
    offered by tribal chiefs to sleep with visiting men as a gesture of hospitality;
    3. Women forced to participate in ritual rapes in festivals to insure
    prosperity.

    • These practices, characterized as the exchange-of-women, meant women
    were taught from a young age to consent to these patriarchal practices.

    • At this same time in the Neolithic Era, women in the agricultural villages
    were needed for their hard work and for their life-giving capabilities. The
    more children they could bear the better because people were needed to
    cultivate the ever-expanding farmland. Women's reproductive ability was a
    village resource and her reproductive capacity became like a commodity or
    like a form of property owned by the rulers of the group. Children now
    became an economic asset.

    • When intertribal warfare during times of economic scarcity resulted in
    larger scale war, women were captured during these early wars and
    enslaved. Women and children became the first slaves in human history.
    Women slaves were forced to become prostitutes, concubines, or domestic
    servants

    • The Queen and upper class women had many privileges. The Queen served
    as Deputy and stand-in for her husband, had personal slaves and attendants,
    but even the Queen's sexuality and reproductive capabilities were controlled
    by men. Kings and warriors had harems and numerous concubines.

    • Royal edicts and legal codes legitimized the patriarchal family. The
    patriarchal family was based on the father as the head of the family and he
    had economic and legal power over the family. He was obeyed by his wife
    and children. Adultery on the part of the wife was punishable by death in
    many edicts and codes.

    • Legal codes differentiated between respectable and non-respectable women
    thus institutionalizing a ranking order for women which has divided
    women, prevented women from uniting, and blocking feminist
    consciousness. These male written codes caused women to compete rather
    than cooperate.

    • Mother Goddesses, so common during the Paleolithic and Neolithic Eras,
    were demoted in the pantheon of gods with the rise of civilization and male
    Gods including male creator gods rose to the top of the pantheon of gods.
    Example: the Hebrew god Yahweh only communicated with patriarchs of
    the tribes including Abraham, Noah, Moses, Cain and Abel, but didn’t
    communicate directly with women. The Greek god Zeus gave birth to
    Athena showing he was superior to her. Medusa's former image as a
    powerful fertility goddess was reworked into making her a monster with
    hair of writhing snakes and Pandora, another fertility goddess, became a
    demon with a box full of the evils of the world.

    • Male historians, scribes, and scholars have created most of the belief
    systems, heroes, and explanatory systems in the various civilizations and
    women have been largely excluded from this process until fairly recently.

    • The majority of women all over the world have been deprived of an
    education until fairly recently.

    • Women have collaborated in their own subordination and have sometimes
    internalized values which have subordinated them.

    source
    summary from book: The creation of patriarchy


    There were/are actually no societies (in post-neolithic civilizations wherein the word "society" means an actual organized group settled in a region) that can be considered purely "matriarchal", the way we now call the asymmetrical system of hierarchies called "patriarchy".

    There were some societies that early anthropologists, from patriarchal cultures themselves, thought were "matriarchal", but it has actually been re-considered and post 1960s anthropologists consider such societies as just having had complete different internal systems, closer to what we'd call "matri-focal" or "egalitarian" societies. In other words, matriarchal societies had been imagined as just patriarchal societies with men instead of women holding power over the other genders. What evidence actually suggests is that in a system where mothers, grandmothers, sisters and women in general are primary decision-makers, there has been more leisure time for men and for women, and less violence and fewer strict hierarchies (though it would be a good idea not to idealize any society as there are always internal differences).

    Western* culture is strongly influenced by the patriarchal cultures that the Abrahamic religions were also a product of. In this culture, even now when we are so secular and will deny any connection with this culture's abrahamic/patriarchal roots, there is a glorification of domination, and a denigration of cooperation. Thus gender roles are created and enacted in service of this dichotomy. "Masculinity" as domination, "Femininity" as cooperation. These are constructed, artificial norms; biology determines a lot less what "manly men" and "girly girls" are expected to act like; most of these "norms" are imposed by culture, and we know this because various cultures impose slightly or greatly different norms on the people who were raised in them.

    *By Western culture, I mean the prevailing culture in W. Europe, N. America and the Arab and Muslim-influenced world.

    Matriarchy, if seen as just patriarchy with women instead of men exercising power and dominating over those with less power, have never existed.

    Well you should have said 50-100 years in some cultures then. Grin


    Celtic law, like other pagan systems of organization and beliefs, were subsumed within Christian law. So yeah you could go on about the role of women or the equality of sexes in various cultures, but almost all of them were subsumed by the more violent patriarchal cultures, in large part due to the violence.

    "Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused."
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #25 - February 24, 2012, 09:54 AM

    Before i read that ^ just thought i should something to this discussion

    Well you should have said 50-100 years in some cultures then. Grin


    There is a link which serpentofeden provided at "Islamic Feminism" thread that indicates the existence of Matriarchal society in West Africa around 500-600 years ago until two of the abrahamic Religions were introduced into the region which led to its decline.


    Edit: I thought i should add this:
    Queen Amina

    Also they say she used to keep harem of men at any town she conquers and kills anyone that she spend a night with.

    "I'm standing here like an asshole holding my Charles Dickens"
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #26 - February 24, 2012, 10:25 AM

    Tut tut - calling Islam western?   parrot

    When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.


    ― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #27 - February 24, 2012, 10:31 AM

    It's as "Western" as Christianity or Judaism - they all originated in the same region and rely on similar creation myths and patriarchal norms and moralisms.

    I don't like to use "western" anyway - it's become an identity politics in itself. I used it in the post above (where I asterisked its use) to signify cultures that are heavily embedded with Abrahamic myths, beliefs and norms.

    "Blessed are they who can laugh at themselves, for they shall never cease to be amused."
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #28 - February 24, 2012, 10:44 AM

    Agreed, I don't like the term western, but pointing out hello, one god beliefs do have a common history and Islam is part of this tradition sounds extremely blasphemous, especially as Said has put Islam in the orientalist camp - wrongly.

    I blame Darius and Cyrus and Zarathustra!

    This discussion does portray Islam as some form of actually very reactionary patriarchal theological political system that really does not belong in the modern world and really should go extinct.  Is it the last gasp of patriarchy?  

    When you are a Bear of Very Little Brain, and you Think of Things, you find sometimes that a Thing which seemed very Thingish inside you is quite different when it gets out into the open and has other people looking at it.


    ― A.A. Milne, Winnie-the-Pooh
  • Re: Confusion over feminism
     Reply #29 - February 24, 2012, 10:46 AM

    LOL no those are about the emergence of civilization and the potential reasonings for the shift from gatherer-hunter societies, since that what you seemed to have asked (about #13).

     grin12 No I remembered most of the arguments for the emergence of large, organised societies. We got our wires crossed. It was specifically this part I was curious about:

    Quote
    It is pretty much unanimous in anthropological studies though that patriarchy, private property (which is practiced less severely in more nomadic, "un-developed" societies) and domination-based theology seem to emerge in tandem.


    Quote
    ? Men in herder tribes learned to domesticate animals during the Neolithic
    era; this meant they realized it took male and female to produce offspring. It
    is thought these herder men were the first men to realize their role in
    paternity.
    ? These herder men were also the first humans to acquire the notion of private
    ownership - in this case the notion of private ownership of their own herds.
    (Before this time during the Paleolithic and Neolithic eras people had
    shared tools, land, and food.)
    ? Once these men acquired the notion of private ownership they wanted to
    pass their herds down to their own blood progeny, and this was when they
    insisted women be virgins when they married and refrain from adultery after
    marriage
    ? This began the first patriarchal families. Fredrich Engles, who set forth these
    ideas in his book written in the 1800?s, The Origin of the Family, Private
    Property and the State, called this the "historical defeat of the female sex."

    Yup, I strongly suspected the first point would be highly relevant, as mentioned before.

    Given that Engles book was written in the 1800's, when archaeology wasn't very advanced, he must have been doing quite a bit of guessing. How well has it held up?

    Still, there seems no ostensible reason why herds and private property should have led to either patriarchy or matriarchy or neither. Offhand I can't see why women shouldn't have owned domestic animals as well.

    The rest of the points in that long list are pretty well known.


    Quote
    There were/are actually no societies (in post-neolithic civilizations wherein the word "society" means an actual organized group settled in a region) that can be considered purely "matriarchal", the way we now call the asymmetrical system of hierarchies called "patriarchy".

    Yes I knew that already, although of course descent was traced through the female line earlier on (with Jewishness being a modern remnant).

    If you think your religion is worth killing for, please start with yourself.
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