How to eliminate the patriarchy?

(173 Posts)
BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 15:05:33

Whilst researching the Institute of Directors recently I came across this fantastic piece of double-think on their website commenting on the gender pay gap -

"the Government should have accepted the hard evidence which shows that influences and choices made by women at the pre-employment stage are what generally lead to average gender pay differences"

It is just so sexist and privileged that it took my breath away for a moment.

Also, the Arab revolutions where it seems that one patriarchal system is being replaced by a potentially worse (for women) one has made me realise that these guys are never going to give up easily.

I have had enough of this system and need to focus my energies into solutions

This is a genuine question - how can we overcome, remove, eliminate the patriarchy?

PS - if after the other thread on this topic, you still don't "get" the patriarchy or don't see the problem, feel free not to contribute here.

Satireisbest Sat 02-Apr-11 15:59:35

I don't really think you can say who can or can't post on a forum.

And as I've read lots of theories on who or what the Patriarchy is I think it would be good to hear your definition please.

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 16:05:44

There is another active thread discussing definitions of the patriarchy - this is about action which is why I pointed those interested in discussing definitions elsewhere.

It would be good to hear you solutions please?

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 16:12:09

I have been watching the ongoing Arab revolutions with interest and wondering whether there will ever be a true women's revolution. At the moment it seems to be all about replacing one group of men with another potentially even more violent and oppressive group of men. (specifically thinking about Libya here)

It struck me that this is still the way power is transferred even in 21st century, that political power is linked to violence and willingness to go to war.

Do women have to become more violent/keen to go to war to ever stand a hope of gaining any power? Surely there must be an alternative?

Would passive resistance ever work?

MillyR Sat 02-Apr-11 16:14:36

BC, I think the issue with this point about the pay gap is that for women to make different choices pre-career, they would have to sacrifice other choices. So for women to do this isn't reducing patriarchy, it is just increasing the negative impact in other areas of their life.

So working out how to eliminate patriarchy is a very difficult question. I suppose I look at things from more of anarchist perspective, and that rather than having a focus of trying to eliminate the system, we look at how we can move away from the system by behaving in an ethical way in the context we find ourselves in.

I think that two major elements that I try to have in my own life are firstly my treatment of other women. A major element of this is children, and looking after other women's children and seeing that as part of the responsibility of being an adult, not me doing someone else a favour. I have also become a lot less judgemental of other women's choices.

The second area is to question a lot of assumptions I had made about how women should behave, think and feel, and consequently how I behave, think and feel.

Obviously this is about changing your own behaviour, not that of others around you. I would like to be able to change institutions, but not co-operating with what is expected of you or other women is at least a starting point.

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 16:25:04

Thanks MillyR, I think those a both good points but very focused on your own behaviour. Do you for example see that men looking after the children of other men (and women) is part of the responsibility of being an adult as well, as it could just be seen as further increasing women's responsibility for childcaring?

I think I am just impatient (and consequently not behaving as a woman should) with not changing institutions. Why is that men in relatively powerless situations still feel able/willing to mobilise politically to overthrow political regime which oppress them and become violent if necessary and we don't?

BC, WRT your question about a "true women's revolution" and/or the efficacy of "passive resistance", you might be interested in the documentary film about the Liberian women's extraordinary campaign to end the violence there.

It's called Pray The Devil Back To Hell.

Good points from MillyR on how to start doing things to dismantle the patriarchy/the influence of the patriarchy.

May I add that the way you/we bring up our own children is another positive way we can influence society. Girl children growing up to be confident, aware and resistant to the patriarchy's perniciousness and boy children growing up not regarding themselves as having a natural superiority to girls in any respect, valuing the nurturing of children (and other people) and resisting gender stereotypes etc.

MillyR Sat 02-Apr-11 16:28:38

BC, I suppose part of it is because you can change things that are part of law or part of a system of government. It is much more difficult to change entrenched cultural attitudes. So I would say that overthrowing patriarchy is similar to overthrowing racism. You can't do it simply through a violent revolution.

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 16:32:38

Thanks IC for the inspiring clip, I will definitely watch that documentary. IIRC Liberia had the first only female president in Africa as well.

I certainly think we can do a lot by bringing our DCs in the right way, but the idea of waiting several more generations to have an impact is not doing much for my impatience!

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 16:37:17

I suppose a parallel could be drawn with the anti-apartheid movement - it certainly hasn't ended racism in South Africa but it has changed the power structure in many ways.

It seems to me that we would have more chance of changing the cultural attitudes after women were in power

im22 Sat 02-Apr-11 20:43:36

Simply stating that "It is just so sexist and privileged" does not make it so. The statement was pointing out that most evidence shows that the gender pay gap is due to women's choices pre-career (although intuitively I would have assumed once in a career, the choices made by women also largely affect the pay gap eg. maternity leave, hours worked etc).
If you would like to show some evidence to back up your claim (that the statement was sexist etc.) rather than just asserting it to be so, then I would gladly like to read the article/links you provide.

Secondly, explain which country is revolting to put a worse regime in place? I had assumed they were revolting to replace their governing regimes with democratically elected ones? But obviously since I don't see the patriarchy at play everywhere as you do, I mustn't be as smart as you and would therefore also like to read the articles/links/evidence you have access to so I can become just a little more enlightened with the ways of the world

AliceWorld Sat 02-Apr-11 21:33:23

BC - I think it's lots of little stuff, that can eventually lead to a tipping point. You're right that ending apartheid in SA does not end racism. It ends a structure that legitimises it, so then opinion change becomes easier. It's like lap dancing clubs. They legitimise a particular way of viewing women. If they didn't exist, that way of viewing would become less legitimised, and so opinion would change. Of course it's not simple, like ending slavery (well not actually ending it in reality, but anyway) not eliminating racist ways of viewing that stem from it.

HerBeX Sat 02-Apr-11 21:42:21

The choices women make pre-employment stage, are not made in a vacuum.

My choice is to have a really interesting, engaging, high status, high paid career and to function properly as a hands on mother with lots of time and energy for my children with a really good work life balance.

Unfortunately, the way the job market is structured at the moment, militiates against giving me that choice in the main. And the people who wrote that shit, are so privileged that they can't see that the structures of the market place are limiting women's choices, because they see the structures as normal, immutable and unchangeable - they simply can't envisage an employment marketplace which works to accomodate the needs of families, where work is organised around families rather than families around work.

I hope that answers our question Im22 but I expect it won't because you don't really want it answered do you, you don't agree with feminist analysis or goals.

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 21:57:31

The IOD quote is en example of a patriarchial institution protecting the existing privileged status of their members. There are further examples of their policy on the gender pay gap and their resistance to measures to increase the number of women on boards on their website.

My choices pre-career were to become pursue academic and professional qualifications as I believed that I was entitled to pay and promotion based on merit. I am specifically not saying equal pay to a man as I believe that I have better qualifications and experience than many men in my industry and that I contribute more value to my organisation. However, I am subject to gender pay differences and that in my view is the patriarchy at work.

In Egypt and Libya, a strong force in the rebel movements are the Muslim Brotherhood who would likely be more oppressive of women. In Libya there is a rebel force which is engaging in a civil war -I am not aware of any democratic process.

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 22:00:05

But instead of getting drawn into a debate on what/whether there is a patriarchy and defending our world view - any more ideas on what we (those of us who see the patriarchy everywhere) can do to change this system?

AliceWorld Sat 02-Apr-11 22:05:45

"any more ideas on what we (those of us who see the patriarchy everywhere) can do to change this system?"

Me, me! I posted some! grin to be fair they were shit

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 22:23:58

Thanks Alice - I missed those. So we protest to close down lap-dancing clubs/ stop new ones from opening which is a good idea and already being done by feminist activists now.

I suppose I am feeling that we can be more ambitious, more immediate. We (women) are so conditioned that if we ask nicely, politely, with rational explanations - eventually we will be allowed to join in with power.

Maybe it is just me, but I feel that we have had enough of waiting and asking nicely?

If women were 77% of the MPs, 88% of directors, 86% of the cabinet, 94% of high court judges - somehow I think lap-dancing clubs would just not get licenced anyway.

AliceWorld Sat 02-Apr-11 22:33:48

That's just one little thing. Needs to be lots of little things imo.

We have indeed waited nicely for too long.

I think changing the power structures, like MPs etc is one things. But cultural change is needed too. And that doesn't come just from changing power structures. Women don't necessarily act in women's interests. Levy's Female Chauvinist Pigs talk about that.

That's where the little things are important too. Including stuff like speaking out on here. You can see how it threatens, by the number of times people come on threads like this just to post derailing crap.

But I don't think that is the whole answer.

im22 Sat 02-Apr-11 22:40:46

@ HerBeX " don't really want it answered do you, you don't agree with feminist analysis or goals". For the most part I would completely agree with you there. The problem with this statement is that you throw it at me as an insult, as if feminist goals/analysis (and in this instance specifically analysis) is correct, and therefore by inference I am wrong in opposing it. Take the issue raised by the OP as an example, she decries sexism and patriarchy concerning a statement that points out that evidence proves that womens choices are the main reason for the wage gap. She does NOT take issue with the evidence/statistics/analysis from which the person drew that conclusion, she simply states the conclusion is patriarchal/sexist because the conclusion is one which doesn't suit her ideology.

Your point on the other hand, (which i must begrudgingly admit is a better and more coherent one) is that although the conclusion is correct, it is based on analysis of a job market which is inherently patriarchal. But so what? The job market works the way it does because this is this is the best way for it to work. Why should the job market adjust to your needs and not you to the job markets needs?
To put this fact in a real environment, suppose you and I work the same job, but you work it with the mindset that you outlined above, ie "My choice is to have a really interesting, engaging, high status, high paid career and to function properly as a hands on mother with lots of time and energy for my children with a really good work life balance", whereas I worked it with the mindset of the patriarchal male - that I would have a more work orientated balance. Assuming our work output etc were equal, I would expect to get promoted etc faster than you because I would work more hours, spend less time off for sick kids etc etc and so on. Ergo wage gap! The only solution would be to reverse the sexism (as you see it) and promote you ahead of me, in effect making a matriarchal job market - but how is that any less sexist? And how does that help the job market?

AliceWorld Sat 02-Apr-11 22:43:50

Psst, BelleCurve, see what I mean? grin

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 22:43:54

Agreed, we also need cultural change and we need to change our own internal limitations and perceptions to allow ourselves to become truly powerful.

Levy's book was very interesting - that shows women working to support the patriarchy (whether they realise it or not).

But it just brings me back to the fundamental point that we need to shake up the whole system before any cultural change will take hold. Cultural change is unlikely to happen with our small actions because the whole system is self-perpetuating.

Even the good ideas about bringing up the next generation as feminists, plays into our role as mothers and primary child-rearers. Well, yes that is good but what about change now!

AliceWorld Sat 02-Apr-11 22:48:51

My take on these things is that it's either gradual change or revolution. And I'm not so keen on either.

But then I think there's a third thing that is the change that we can't foresee cos it hasn't happened yet. I think big societal change is often unpredictable cos we can't imagine too far outside of what we know. It's a wishy washy answer I know. But I think lots of little seemingly unconnected minor things at some point create a larger change.

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 22:49:09


so pleased to have upset the oppressors - must be doing something right!

I shall start making a list... and come the revolution...

AliceWorld Sat 02-Apr-11 22:51:13

"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win" Ghandi

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 22:54:16

As you may have guessed, I am more in favour of the revolutionary approach - just need a bit of a kick-start (and DS to have a good night's sleep!)

It seems that whenever there is massive societal change no-one can accurately predict the outcome or even if it will be better than the current system.

Sorry to keep harping on about the Arab revolutions, but it's not like there is a defined goal - they knew they were being oppressed, they knew they had to get rid of the current system and went for it.

actually, scrap that - I am not apologising and not harping on. If you don't like it, tough. That's my small step for the day.

'the job market works as it does because that is the best way for it to work'

tell that to the increasing number of unemployed. Market logic stinks. It basically goes...the Market exists, therefore whatever it does is Right'. Er, no. What it does is to make the most profit possible for the top 2%, or 1%, or whoever it is who owns most of the West. (Probably white males like you im22...just a guess, correct me if I'm wrong :D). The market does not exist to enrich anyone but the property/company owners; or to look after anyone; or to enable education, or care, or all of the many things a functioning society needs. As you would no doubt agree, im22, it's a nasty, cold hard world out there.

Luckily, a lot of talented people who can see further than narrow profit (which will fuck us all over in the end, and already is...have you noticed what's happening to this country lately? Or the US, no doubt an economy you admire? None too pleasant even for the rich, having to live in sterile gated communities because the cities are increasingly unlivable, and the State cannot be responsible because guess what, it only exists to regulate an economy geared at enriching the already rich).

A talented woman with children will frequently do a far better job than an overentitled, arrogant and charmless man at the same job. That's a fact even you may have observed. Also, the time of the single-earner family is over, and educated, ambitious women are not going to go away and sit in the kitchen.

I actually think that sadly, in the coming climate, a lot of them may give up if it is affordable, or end up (as they already do) working in jobs that are beneath their capabilities. However, patriarchy has made the mistake of educating its girls and women so well, that a lot of them won't accept being shoved out of work by ignorant sexist bosses and moneygrubbing corporations. A lot more men are going to end up as stay at home fathers because they will have to accept that their partner will always earn more than they will. I don't necessarily like this situation either; both parents shoudl be able to work and contribute to childcare in a sane society.

AliceWorld Sat 02-Apr-11 22:57:23

Too bloody right. That's one of those little things. Not framing being an outspoken women as harping and in need of an apology.

I'll be in the 3rd row of the revolution I think. I kinda like the idea, but am kinda not brave enough. You start it though, and I'll be out in a bit.

dittany Sat 02-Apr-11 22:58:15

I think the thing is we're in the middle of a revolution, even if we're not quite aware of it.

Women all over the world are seeing the truth about what men (as a group) have done to us. Our consciousness is changing. I'd be suprised if the old patriarchal brutality is seen as acceptable in 50 years, and in 100 years it wouldn't surprise me if it was completely gone.

Alice I am a known feminist harridan grin and work with lots of them too. The main thing is: don't for the love of god ever apologise for a. being female b. being clever and accomplished as well c. caring about other people rather than kowtowing to managerial crap. An organisation that cares for its staff and whose staff care for eachother goes further. Tories and 'dominant male' types are too stupid and selfish to realise that.

AliceWorld Sat 02-Apr-11 22:59:49

Like it Dittany. When would you say it started?

ggod dittany I hope you are right.

From where I am sitting the situation seems far more complex. There will, of course, be no return to the old patriarchal values, the woman trapped in the house, and thank god for that. But it seems that women (and all the other non-white male groups) are receiving a backlash of quite enormous strength and vigour. We're the new serfs and the dumping-grounds of astonishing hate, bile and exploitation. The logics of global markets and 'competitiveness' are being used against us with astonishing brutality and idiocy. We need to be damn strong. Luckily so many women are...

dittany Sat 02-Apr-11 23:04:17

In the West it probably started with Mary Wollstonecraft's "A Vindication of the Rights of Women", but desire for female liberation has always been bubbling under at various places and times. The patriarchy ensures that women are never made aware of it though so we have to keep reinventing the wheel.

That is what is so great about this latest resurgence of feminism. There are enough of us around not to have forgotten the second wave, or to have written it off.

AliceWorld Sat 02-Apr-11 23:04:24

I'm glad you say there will be no going back. Things worry me at the moment, that the backlash is sending things further back and we can't stop it as the governments have the whole cuts rhetoric sown up.

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 23:04:41

That's reassuring dittany. Any thoughts how we can speed it up to this generation seeing more results?

Also I am interested in views on whether the revolution will necessarily be violent i.e. you have to fight fire with fire.

I'm not sure about this one myself and would love to think it could be peaceful, but also impatient and angry at the persisting injustice in the world.

dittany Sat 02-Apr-11 23:12:42

I don't think it will be a revolution like male revolutions, so probably not violent, or not very violent. That's what's in my heart. I think women need to listen to ourselves about it and pay attention to what we hear. So what you need to do may not be the same as what I need to do, or what the women down the street or in the next country need to do.

I always used think the revolution started somewhere else, but in fact it starts with yourself in your own environment and what and who you have influence on in that. Some people take a larger public stage, but there are all sorts of ways of doing it.

I also think women talking and listening to one another about sexism and patriarchy is pretty revolutionary. Like Alice says, there are quite a few people who really don't like seeing it happen.

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 23:19:26

Yes, it probably is more revolutionary to even be having this conversation than I realised. It's just that once you start to see the patriarchy and sexism and misogyny it appears everywhere and the frustration to do something can be overwhelming.

But you are right, inviting others to see it and being able to discuss is actually pretty revolutionary puts down Moltov cocktail

HerBeX Sat 02-Apr-11 23:22:59

Yes lots of people really don't like seeing it happen do they?

Which is why they come on to feminist threads to tell us that we're all wrong adn that the way the world is organised now, where men own 90% of the world's wealth and 1 in 4 women are raped or sexually assaulted and where we earn 17% less than men just for being women and we do jobs way below our skills and ability levels, so squandering all that potential human resource and economic input, is the best way to organise it. grin

Yes yes, it's been orgainsed brilliantly, I'm sure. grin

dittany Sat 02-Apr-11 23:27:05

Hey if you want to be out there throwing molotov cocktails I'll be right beside you passing you the matches. grin

If you think about it, the suffragettes used to go out and plant bombs and smash windows in the West End. They got themselves arrested and sent to prison. They were hard core compared to what we're up to now. I've been thinking about that quite a lot recently.

@Alice, when I say there will be no going back, I mean to the old values the Right so desperately want. Economically, that is not possible. However, what I do fear for is a sort of nu-dystopia in which we all (women and a lot of men too) work far harder for less money while the elite suck up our life blood and turn it into cash. Women are the favoured workers of the global elite; we do all the dirty work and do it well. But for Western women, things are particularly fraught because we don't do it all as cheaply as Chinese, Indian or East European women. I think feminism this time has to be absolutely global...the communication issues are awesomely difficult but could be very powerful if properly harnessed.

@dittany I think that civil unrest and disobedience at every level and on behalf of many worthy causes is bound to increase. The problem is that the media are so profoundly stacked against us and direct action of any kind is so easy to twist and portray as 'mass rioting', as we saw on March 26.

HerBeX Sat 02-Apr-11 23:37:11

But you know the one chink of hope? It's that people no longer believe the mass media. Thanks to the internet and people being able to talk to each other, a lot of people thn previously, now know that these bastards just lie, that they have their own agenda and that we can't trust them to report the news honestly.

HerBeX Sat 02-Apr-11 23:37:42

a lot more people, sorry

BelleCurve Sat 02-Apr-11 23:38:34

ok - so here is the plan, don't you just love google?

but actually some really good points - "There are times when it is necessary to fight against things that have become so wrong that they should no longer be. Things that were once small that have become big, but are no less wrong, must be made small again; a revolution, or a complete circle, is needed"

garlicbutter Sun 03-Apr-11 02:56:53

Don't dismiss the changes that have already been made, at least in 'Western' economies & cultures. They have been swingeing, radical and yet become taken for granted in less than 50 years - to women's disadvantage, I think, but still it's good that the changes have permeated deep enough to be taken as read. They were achieved by: mass protests, largely peaceful if loud; small-scale protests all over, with women walking out and sitting-in for improved rights; persistent parliamentary lobbying; media-badgering; individual nagging persuasion; celebrity endorsement and pulling together.

As a middle-aged ex-activist, I'm afraid I find today's feminists unbelievably unfocused, woolly and whiney. You need clarity, focus and far more inclusivity to get things done.

garlicbutter Sun 03-Apr-11 03:01:36

I said focus twice. Should have used another word like determination.

garlicbutter Sun 03-Apr-11 04:23:32

Here's a clue - you must have noticed how alarmed "The Patriarchy" has been by the Uncut protests? Hierarchies get very worried by anarchies grin What you need is to stop waiting for someone to sort things out, put forward some bloody sound proposals (sounder than Uncut's), get hordes of women on your side (it'll be easier to do that if you stop telling them what to believe & criticising them for not believing as you want them to) and start making yourselves noticed.

Good luck, I'd like to see things starting to happen

noodle69 Sun 03-Apr-11 06:57:20

On a personal level I think women individually should say I wont accept men treating me badly. If they do then they are doing an injustice to themselves, also they are allowing their children to repeat the patterns and their daughters will then allow men to walk all over them as well.

It is frustrating how many threads are on this site where women let men treat them like complete dirt. Why they lie back and accept this I will never understand.

Classwar Sun 03-Apr-11 07:49:21

It seems to me the majority of Women (as a group) seem quite happy with things the way they are, so they would have to be brought on board.

And what would replace the Patriarchy, because if it's swapping one set of masters for anothe, count me out.

StewieGriffinsMom Sun 03-Apr-11 07:57:50

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

hogsback Sun 03-Apr-11 08:02:46

I think there's already a quiet revolution going on in two areas of traditional male dominance: medicine and the law. In 20 years time I wouldn't be at all surprised to see the top ranks of those professions dominated by women.

Classwar Sun 03-Apr-11 08:45:09

And will they be for equality, or more on women's side?

StewieGriffinsMom Sun 03-Apr-11 08:47:02

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

BC, you mentioned upthread that if 70% of MPs were women, places like lap-dancing clubs would be less likely to get licences etc. etc.

Well, there's one way of starting a non-violent revolution. If feminist thinkers joined the main political parties en masse, especially if they could outnumber the pro-patriarchy thinkers, then we could start exerting real influence on the decisions made in our country. Also if we invaded took over the majorities on school boards and other organisations that heavily influence culture and policy, we could guide decisions in favour of female-friendly changes etc.

As a technique, it was used by the pro-hunting lobby I seem to remember - loads of them joined the RSPCA in order to push a powerful animal charity into their way of thinking. Likewise it's been oft-mooted in the US with the gun control lobby being encouraged to en masse join the NRA and so stop it from using its influence in favour of relaxed gun ownership laws etc.

There's a suggestion for you, anyway!

BelleCurve Sun 03-Apr-11 09:57:40

That's an interesting one IC, the trojan horse approach.

Is there a feminist view on whether the new alternative vote system could benefit us? I couldn't see much advantage to either approach really but it would be interesting to know if any analysis has been done.

On noodle69's point about women staying with abusive partners, I don't view this as weak but a rational choice that they would be worse off on their own under the patriarchal system. If the system were more accepting of single women, mothers and children it would be easier to leave for an individual.

HerBeX Sun 03-Apr-11 12:30:16

"Why they lie back and accept this I will never understand."

Won't you noodle? No, I don't suppose you will, after all, there have been hundreds of threads on mumsnet about domestic violence and it has been explained over and over again, the various different reasons why some women "lie back and accept this" as you put it, but if you are determined not to understand then you never will no matter how many times people explain it to you.

To understand something, you have to actually want to understand it and listen to poeple when they explain it and remember what they said next time the conversation arises...

HerBeX Sun 03-Apr-11 12:31:13

And yes the Trojan Horse approach is a good one.

<Considers whether joining the Tory Party would stick too much in the craw. OTOH, the men are better dressed than the Labour Party ones...>

hogsback Sun 03-Apr-11 13:01:38

HerBeX - it will be interesting to see what happens in medicine and law over the next few years. If the numbers graduating are anything to go by, those professions will be dominated by women over time. Of course that doesn't necessarily mean they will be dominated by feminists.

Of course we all know what usually happens to the status of professions when they start being seen as primarily female occupations sad

NotDavidTennant Sun 03-Apr-11 13:55:35

im22: 'To put this fact in a real environment, suppose you and I work the same job, but you work it with the mindset that you outlined above, ie "My choice is to have a really interesting, engaging, high status, high paid career and to function properly as a hands on mother with lots of time and energy for my children with a really good work life balance", whereas I worked it with the mindset of the patriarchal male - that I would have a more work orientated balance. Assuming our work output etc were equal, I would expect to get promoted etc faster than you because I would work more hours, spend less time off for sick kids etc etc and so on'

If you were working longer hours then HerBex but still only producing exactly the same output as her then you'd be the less productive worker, and presumably less worthy of a promotion.

But thanks for a nice illustration of the illogicality that leads to the job markert not being 'the best way for it to work'.

noodle69 Sun 03-Apr-11 14:33:01

I am not talking about domestic violence or anything that severe HerBeX I am talking about the women who do everything for their man and accept him not even cleaning, getting up with the kids, changing a nappy etc.

You could join all three parties, HerBex - in fact, if all feminist thinkers did that it would be even better! There are no rules against it AFAIK...

HerBeX Sun 03-Apr-11 21:19:08

But that has also been discussed ad nauseum noodle, and explanations offered.

You may not agree with the explanations, you may not be able to imagine being in the mindset which accepts this type of inequality, but to never be able to understand them? Really? Never?

HerBeX Sun 03-Apr-11 21:21:16

LOL Notdavidtennant that is indeed beautifully spotted.

And in fact, is a very real illustration of what quite often actually happens. Canny bosses know that they get much more productivity out of their part time workers, than out of their full time ones. We give them the productivity and efficiency equivalent of about four days full time work, and they only have to pay us 2 and a half days.

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 08:31:08

Firstly, as with any political movement, you need to mobilize the masses. The internet is a good tool, I just watched a lecture on youtube about how women are leading the social media revolution. I think this is connected to the way women relate to each other, we are very good at communication because this is one survival tactic under patriarchy.
Actually this is pretty hard, there are still lots of women in the world who are male-identified misogynists, because under patriarchy they are rewarded for this. Actually, if you're a male-identified misogynist as you're going to get promoted in almost every field.

Then you need action. Non-violent action is the only way to go with women's liberation. The world is fucked if women try to emulate men.

So at first, we need political changes. The steps made against the sex industry in Iceland were a good start. This is not the revolution but it will do a lot to raise women's self-esteem. Banning porn would reduce rape and violence against women, thereby reducing the state of subconcsious fear that every woman lives with every day without even realising it.

The personal is political, so women should stop getting married and living with men. I've reached the conclusion that male-female pair-bonding is the pillar that holds up the patriarchy and keeps it rock solid. This is the very key. Women should live with their friends, sisters, old classmates, other single mothers, or their own mothers. This is the quickest way to make the entire house of cards collapse.

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 08:37:06

dittany, I too have been thinking about how hardcore the women in the past were compared to us. They were very very brave women indeed.

I hate the fact they haven't been given their place in history for their utter commitment to fighting for social justice.

Classwar Mon 04-Apr-11 10:14:30

'The personal is political, so women should stop getting married and living with men. I've reached the conclusion that male-female pair-bonding is the pillar that holds up the patriarchy and keeps it rock solid. This is the very key. Women should live with their friends, sisters, old classmates, other single mothers, or their own mothers. This is the quickest way to make the entire house of cards collapse.'

You leave your husband first then.

Let us know when you've left him.

dittany Mon 04-Apr-11 10:55:32

Who are you Classwar?

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 11:32:27

What has that got to do with the price of fish, Classwar?

A woman staying with or leaving her husband does not change the objective truth about the patriarchal structures.

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 11:37:24

Classwar. Is that someone who is against the class system, against the bourgoisie

Not a very authentic proletarian if you've got a PC are you Classwar

dittany Mon 04-Apr-11 11:42:16

Socialists are never very supportive of feminism.

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 11:42:27

Urgh, feel like someone's stalking me

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 11:46:13

And it's not you Dittany

dittany Mon 04-Apr-11 12:22:28

I do hang on your every word Sakura. grin

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 12:24:05

right back at you

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 12:25:44

I actually do. No irony.

dittany Mon 04-Apr-11 12:32:34

No irony in mine either.

That's another great thing about feminism. There are all these amazing, intelligent women, with terrific insights and analysis to read/listen to.

It's so much better than having to listen to stupid pontificating males/male supporters who think they've cornered the market on knowledge because they can type inches and inches whilst saying absolutely nothing and contributing nothing. When I think that before radical feminism that's all really I had it makes me quite sad.

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 12:34:46


Prolesworth Mon 04-Apr-11 13:14:25

Message withdrawn

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 13:19:32

nice to see you're getting angry prolesworth grin

dittany Mon 04-Apr-11 13:30:18

"And I just scroll on past the live ones who just love to regale us with endless mansplainy inches of their "wisdom" on the internet, holding my middle finger aloft as I do so."

Oh brilliant Prolesworth. I am so going to use that technique.

aliceliddell Mon 04-Apr-11 13:38:37

Sakura-socialism and identifying politically with the proletariat is a political POV not a choice to live in a state of penury.
Dittany-I am a socialist and a feminist. But not a socialist-feminist because in practise they are apologists for sexist male 'socialists'. Why let them off the hook and allow their totally inadequate (because sexist) definition of socialism to be accepted as correct?

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 13:45:18

well quite aliceliddell, you took the words out of my mouth.

My posts are a feminist critique of the inner-workings of the patriarchy, but Classwar was implying that they counted for nothing because I have a husband, and therefore I should put my money where my mouth is and leave him

Whether I leave my husband or not does make any difference to the objective analysis though.

And by Classwar's own rule, if he should not claim any socialist pretenses if he owns a PC

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 13:45:55


darleneconnor Mon 04-Apr-11 13:46:19

Could women all go on strike? What would the effect be if we all stopped doing all the unpaid work we do, even just for 1 day?

What strikes me as self-defeating is the amount of power women freely give away to men. eg the vast majority of mothers give their children's fathers full parental rights, even though most dont take on the full responsibilities.

Women should own their own homes so that they are the ones in a position of power if a relationship breaks down or becomes violent.

Women in the workplace should favour other women over men, the way men do with each other. Men have us all fighting between each other depleating us of energy to band together to fight the common enemy. I see it time and time again women showing more affinity to men of the same age, race, class etc than to women from a different group.

We need to encourage 100% of women to vote. We fought for the right but now half of us dont use it! If we elect feminists then things will change.

StewieGriffinsMom Mon 04-Apr-11 13:48:07

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 13:50:45

Striking is very effective.

In 1975 the women of Iceland went on strike for a day
Including all unpaid and paid labou

Now they have a feminist lesbian prime minster who has banned all strip clubs and the most female friendly, mother-supporting, laws in the world.

"The men of Iceland are just going to have to get used to the idea that women are not for sale"

garlicbutter Mon 04-Apr-11 14:01:18

I like your post, Darlene Didn't know about the Icelandic strike, Sakura - brilliant!

Prolesworth Mon 04-Apr-11 14:01:37

Message withdrawn

StewieGriffinsMom Mon 04-Apr-11 14:08:12

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

garlicbutter Mon 04-Apr-11 14:08:35

Mrs Pankhurst believed that, when women got the right to vote, we would use it to improve conditions for women. Well, of course, we have done. How about taking it a step further, then? How about campaiging for every woman to vote for a woman?

That should raise awareness of women's issues in Westminster grin

Prolesworth Mon 04-Apr-11 14:11:27

Message withdrawn

sakura Mon 04-Apr-11 14:13:30

"How about campaiging for every woman to vote for a woman?"

I think this is a great idea. I think women should vote for women, not parties.

Left wing or right wing, it doesn't matter, when men get together they still fuck women over. The parties were created by and for men anyway; their policies don't serve women, except maybe the Green party. Isn't the head of the Greens a woman?

Anyway, I think this idea would work to a certain extent.

garlicbutter Mon 04-Apr-11 14:15:19

The more I think about it, the more I love it! If the boys want to keep 'their' jobs, they'll have to field at least 50% female candidates, won't they?

StewieGriffinsMom Mon 04-Apr-11 14:15:52

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

darleneconnor Mon 04-Apr-11 15:02:21

I dont think just voting for any woman would help. Theresa May? Margaret Thatcher?
We need to vote for pro-women women.

aliceliddell Mon 04-Apr-11 15:19:54

DarleneC - you're not wrong <holds up 10 card>
From previous discussion it is apparent that's not women who support the gods of The Market. So not Tories, then. Or Lib Dems. Oh, or Labour. Maybe Green? small, low carbon markets, but still markets....but then I am an old lefty, so what do I know?

aliceliddell Mon 04-Apr-11 15:26:39

on this subject, I am a candidate for my local anti-cuts group. I'm standing via TUSC (trade union socialist coalition) for reasons which need not detain us here. Their policy on sexism is "Full equality for women" which is obviously a bit crap. I am planning to campaign to change this to something a little more rounded. Your ideas would be appreciated.

aliceliddell Mon 04-Apr-11 15:47:41

I just read darlenec's pro-women women to dp. He asked what about pro-women men? Oh, ffs. <will get him later>

StewieGriffinsMom Mon 04-Apr-11 16:16:20

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

HerBeX Mon 04-Apr-11 20:42:31

LOL he obviously tunes out, AL

sakura Tue 05-Apr-11 01:36:39

ClassWar, it's not replacing one masters for another. What you are talking about is the essence of a male revolution.

It will be, for the first time in history, women no longer being dictated to by^ ^men. Look at the way women have been treated by men over the millenia. It can't go on. Women need power over their own lives.
No more Men's Laws Women's LIves

sakura Tue 05-Apr-11 01:40:13

and I think voting for a woman, any woman, is better than voting for a man whose political views most closely represent your own.

30% is what the prime minister of Iceland says. Get 30% of the power in women's hands and a shift takes place, the female energy synergizes and women are no longer tokens: they can propose the policies they believe in

get a man who is a socialist/conservative, what have you and politics is still being framed by the male worldview

Every problem: the class issue, racism the environment all boils down to female oppression because the oppression of women is the original prototype for all oppressions

Prolesworth Tue 05-Apr-11 10:03:23

Message withdrawn

Very interesting, Prolesworth, very good points.

So one good way of bringing down the patriarchy is for plenty of women and feminist sympathisers/thinkers to infiltrate the "ruling classes". As you say, the Conservative female MPs carried the most weight in that debate because of their privileged position on the government side.

What were the most significant actions that brought down apartheid in South Africa? And got rid of slavery? Perhaps we could pick up a few tips there? How did they do it?

Unrulysun Tue 05-Apr-11 10:23:58

I'm finding that really hard

Basically you're talking about voting for sexists who will probably reinforce the patriarchy vagina or no vagina. I'm struggling to see it tbh.

Prolesworth Tue 05-Apr-11 10:36:16

Message withdrawn

No, personally I want "feminist thinkers" to crowd-out the patriarchy's institutions and take them down or remodel them to be more female friendly.

That's one possibility, anyway.

I'm not in favour of voting for women because they are women. There are two problems with that IMO:
1. A number of women have got to where they are in politics by playing the man's game and they have not intention of changing that. They would not necessarily benefit women by being in power, possibly even the reverse.
2.That approach would likely bring the MRAs out in force to vote for men "just because they are men". I'm not sure that would be helpful to the feminist revolution.

Personally, I'm not anti the idea of an all-out feminist revolution, but the question is how to do that effectively?

(in answer to Unrulysun)

sethstarkaddersmackerel Tue 05-Apr-11 10:41:52

vote for pro-womanness of policies rather than either party or sex.

Unrulysun Tue 05-Apr-11 10:45:20

Good. Glad we're not all for that. Because I could no more have brought myself to vote for Thatcher than I could grow wings and fly

I hope Dittany is right. I just worry that we got rid of wanting power and replaced it with 'empower' . I think the ideas about picketing lap-dancing bars etc would be a good place to start.

garlicbutter Tue 05-Apr-11 10:49:57

Question: If Thatcher's cabinet had been mostly female, would she then have been unable to do women down as she did?

aliceliddell Tue 05-Apr-11 11:49:38

Immaculada - agree. When we look at women eg Palin, Thatcher &co, they go there by doing all possible to disguise the fact they had any difference because of gender. Other thanbeing acceptably feminine, tits teeth hair heels. Hence the reluctance for women only short lists, enthusiasm for achievement on 'merit' etc. Naturally, the world is run by men because they have more merit. I expect you've all noticed that. <bitter laughter> Idea of voting for the bastards too painful. Tories cut public sector, not just women's jobs also sevrvices eg care of elders/disabled which are then done at home possibly by he exact same women who just lost their jobs doing the same bloody thing for £15k pa

Why can't we start our own political party? The Green Party did it and pushed their one issue to the forefront of other parties' agendas in doing so.

Identify and invest in women-run companies/hedge funds/pensions etc. - both commercially astute and ethically sound

dittany Tue 05-Apr-11 12:15:28

That's not true about Palin Alice. She declared herself a feminist. She spoke out about misogyny directed to her daughters. She also used to take her baby to work and breastfed in the Governor's office. That is not disguising her femaleness, quite the opposite.

She was also subject to the most hideous misogyny when she ran for VP. The haters who had been attacking Hillary, simply turned their misogyny guns on her.

Topoff Tue 05-Apr-11 14:54:41

Sarah Palin is against abortion in pretty much all cases.
She is also against same sex marriages.

I wouldn't vote for her.

StewieGriffinsMom Tue 05-Apr-11 15:27:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

TeiTetua Tue 05-Apr-11 15:44:32

More women in public office would be a fine and wonderful thing. But if they're Margaret Thatcher or Sarah Palin, that's not wonderful at all. It's a sign of how British versus American politics work though, that Thatcher was thoroughly competent and Palin was/is seen by many people as an insult to the voters.

dittany Tue 05-Apr-11 17:16:10

I didn't say she was the same as Clinton. If you read back, I was responding to Alice's claim that Palin ignored her sex apart from - "tits teeth hair heels"

Which is incorrect. You don't need to extrapolate any further than what I actually said.

Mrs Thatcher being in power made a big difference to women in politics, even though she never did anything directly on behalf of women.

Calling Palin incompetent is another example of sexism. She doesn't appear to be any less competent than the men she works with/runs against.

dittany Tue 05-Apr-11 17:17:26

Or to put it another way men weren't insulted when bozos like George W. Bush or Reagan were in power.

Topoff Tue 05-Apr-11 17:33:49

Bush, Reagon, Bill Clinton, Blair all had heaps of criticism.

I like Obama but I don't think America does anymore.
The fundamental right-wing are dangerous.

dittany Tue 05-Apr-11 17:39:57

Once again, people didn't feel those men were insults to the voters. Disagreeing with someone and criticising them is very different from rejecting their actual candidacy as invalid.

I think you're getting confuse what I'm arguing Topoff. I don't think anybody should support the US right wing however singling Palin out as "incompetent" "an insult" "tits teeth hair heels" is sexist, and saying she disguised her sex when she ran is completely untrue.

dittany Tue 05-Apr-11 17:43:22

Palin was actually brought in to appeal to women as a constituency. When the democrats fucked over the Hillary voters and forced a candidate on them they hadn't actually selected, the Republicans took a chance on Palin.

Women should not feel insulted when we are being appealed to as a political constituency. But women who think that women are second rate or less than, won't like the idea of women being treated as an interest group or worth cultivating. They'd rather identify with any other kind of group instead.

aliceliddell Tue 05-Apr-11 18:15:09

the careful reader may note I referred to acceptable signs of femininity. none of the tricky stuff like abortion rights, parental leave, rape crisis, equal opps law. Palin used the most anti-women aspects of femininity to sell her image as a hockey mom anti-state tea party activist. Sorry Dittany, I agree with other posters on this one. I'll support a great big long list of lefty boys before I'd touch Palin/Thatcher etc with a bargepole.

dittany Tue 05-Apr-11 18:17:28

You said she disguised her femaleness. She didn't.

Could you be specific about those policies aliceliddle? From what I heard for example Palin never said that she would legislate on abortion, she thought it should be left to states to decide. What about rape crisis? What's her policy there?

K999 Tue 05-Apr-11 18:20:27

Left for the states to decide = passing the buck surely??

resisterhood Tue 05-Apr-11 18:24:30

I think it's a bit telling that people immediately think of Thatcher and Sarah Palin. Not all women politicians are like them, are they. I'm no tory but some of the tory women who spoke in the rape defendant anonymity debate were excellent. And we have some right wing feminists here too, like SWC and claig.

I'm a lifelong leftie from a long line of lefties but fucking hell, my eyes have been opened about how anti-woman some leftie men can be. Look at the reaction by the left to the Assange case ffs.

resisterhood Tue 05-Apr-11 18:25:15

oh crap, forgot to namechange confused

dittany Tue 05-Apr-11 18:26:43

"Left for the states to decide = passing the buck surely??"

It happens quite a lot in the US. All states have legislatures. But I'm sure they'll be interested in your idea that states making legislation at that level is the executive "passing the buck".

dittany Tue 05-Apr-11 18:29:13

The 2008 elections in the US were what opened my eyes to how much the American left at least hate women. That and the Terry Schiavo case where a whole lot of leftist men were desperate to see a severely brain-damaged woman euthanised.

The sad thing is when the leftie women join in the woman bashing.

Anybody who doesn't have as much negative to say about Mick Huckabee as they do about Sarah Palin is a screaming sexist.

dittany Tue 05-Apr-11 18:57:14

The great thing about feminist blogs is that they do the work so nobody else has to. Violet Socks has extensively examined some feminists' very sexist reactions to Sarah Palin. Worth a read for help to get past the kneejerk sexism:

K999 Tue 05-Apr-11 19:00:12

I'm pretty sure that they won't be that interested...but surely she must have an opinion either way?

No one saw you, resister... wink

StewieGriffinsMom Tue 05-Apr-11 21:28:35

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

garlicbutter Thu 28-Apr-11 12:08:27

So I'll be voting for women on May 5th smile
I decided I'd vote by gender unless there were no female representatives for parties I can tolerate - for me, that gave prorities of:
1. Not extremely right-wing
2. Female
3. Moderately left

So the Greens and Labour are getting my vote; I've never voted Green before, so their prepronderance of female candidates got them a new vote!

Clearly this wouldn't work for anyone whose party politics override their gender politics, but I thought it worth a mention in case any other women might consider it.

ElephantsAndMiasmas Thu 28-Apr-11 14:39:36

Interesting idea garlicbutter. If AV comes in I would definitely consider this aspect for my second & third choices. So 1 to party of my choice, 2 and 3 to parties who I can tolerate with preference to those fielding women.

garlicbutter Thu 28-Apr-11 14:56:09

Like it smile

I bet more women could come up with personal voting strategies to incoporate gender-based voting. I would love to see the major parties forced into a position where they had to field armies of capable women candidates!

ElephantsAndMiasmas Thu 28-Apr-11 15:44:32

Someone's going to come along in a minute and tell us that we are giving feminism a bad name, you know smile

SybilBeddows Thu 28-Apr-11 15:47:36

if you can think of a feminist activity that doesn't get feminism a bad name, you get a Mars bar.

ElephantsAndMiasmas Thu 28-Apr-11 15:52:53

I think anything done whilst wearing a floral apron gets a free pass, Sybil.

aliceliddell Thu 28-Apr-11 17:26:19

Tunisia's new constitution demands all parties field equal numbers of men & women; in this country, Green party had gender parity leadership; so does Scottish Socialist party, Labour is the only 'big' party to make a specific attempt to increase no. of women candidates, but are now backing slow cuts. Don't see the argument for voting for women who support anti-woman policies eg cutting Sure Start, reducing free childcare, limiting equal opps legislation etc; it's just tokenism to promote one woman's political career at the expense of every other woman. But Sybil you are so right!

garlicbutter Thu 28-Apr-11 21:03:39

Helpful post, Alice, thank you.

I've been reconsidering my attitudes to various powerful women lately. While I'm an out-and-out political Thatcher hater, I've now decided she deserves credits for being the first woman PM and for doing it along with having children and a marriage. Whilst I could write a dissertation on how she did it badly, the point I had to reconsider is that she did it and was a woman.

In my revised mindset, I feel the gender of the woman is equally important as her politics. If we apply the usual criteria to our selection of leaders (ie, are gender neutral), we're assuming the playing field is level. And it isn't.

It's taken me 56 years to reach this conclusion and, as I say, it's a fresh departure for me - incidentally, I'll also be voting for over-50s - so I'm very much up for discussion, if it'll help me hone my thinking smile

aliceliddell Fri 29-Apr-11 19:33:50

Ta, Garlic!

SardineQueen Fri 29-Apr-11 21:21:17

Just dipping into this and what an interesting idea! Reading it backwards and was starting to splutter (have quite strong political views) when saw the points about assange and hideous sexism from lefties and of course that is right. And about how some of the tory women made great speeches about rape anonimity. And it is a very good point. Maybe what we do really need is women - any women? Just to get the numbers up...

I can feel myself starting to splutter again even as I write it grin but it's just a different sort of tactical voting? Maybe...

Thomas1969 Tue 03-May-11 18:49:52

I think you should leave it up to that dodgy 'Y' chromosome.

garlicbutter Tue 03-May-11 19:27:21

Interesting contribution, Thomas hmm

When I put this tactical voting idea forward earlier, people said "But all the menz will vote on gender, then, and men will be elected" ... missing the point that this is what happens at present.

Anyway, I'm voting tactically for women over 50. And I hope more women will vote for women.

Politics is not gender-neutral in this country. We can alter the balance by using the democratic vote our predecessors wisely fought for.

SardineQueen Tue 03-May-11 21:57:30

It's a plan GB grin

garlicbutter Tue 03-May-11 22:01:03

Eh, that's you and me then, SQ, party politics permitting grin
Are we feeling like a little acorn ... ?

SardineQueen Tue 03-May-11 22:06:47

You do realise that I will have to vote for the hated party for my MP now? Not that it makes any odds - super safe seat and she has been there for years. DH votes for her anyway... So can I sort of have his vote as mine and I can vote for a party I like?

<trying to wriggle out already grin>

No I will do it, I really will. Even though I am a member of a political party... <bottom lip quivers>

No I'm going for it.

garlicbutter Tue 03-May-11 22:08:09

Here, have a medal grin

I'm impressed!

SardineQueen Tue 03-May-11 22:10:19

Ooh thanks

<pins it to lapel>

<throws party membership paraphernalia in skip>

Thistledew Wed 04-May-11 08:58:19

I know the thread has moved on, but I wanted to pick up on what HerBex and hogsback said about the effect of professions such as medicine and law becoming female dominated. It could be argued that the effects of this are already being felt.

Certain areas of law in which proportionately more women work, such as social justice (housing, welfare benefits, and low cost employment), family law and immigration, have all already had substantial funding cuts, with more in the pipeline.

10-15 years ago work in these areas was seen as important for social cohesion and social mobility. It was felt that legal work in these areas was of such value that it should be remunerated at the same level as that which a privately paying client would be prepared to pay.

Is it a coincidence that now that large numbers of women work in these areas that lawyers are expected to work for little more than the warm glow of satisfaction, and in many cases for free? Especially when the clients most badly affected by the withdrawal of access to justice tend to be women and children?

As to what can be done to make changes, I think that part of the problem is that the patriarchy is so all pervasive that it makes it very hard to tackle. It is like trying to pop a balloon- you can squeeze it to nothibg in one place only to find it bulges out in another. Unlike the analogies with apartheid, there is no one direct source of ill that we can point to and attack. For that reason, I don't think we will ever see revolution.

For me, the answer is that I will do everything I can on a personal level to change the attitudes of the people I encounter. I also have a cause that I am passionate about, and will campaign for that, an encourage others to do so, from a feminist viewpoint.

The other idea that I find interesting is that the biggest changes may not come from within the Western world. That although there are bigger problems for women in developing countries, there is a bigger capacity for change, as the capitalist patricarchal structures that are so entrenched in the West are not so solid in developing countries. If I had my time again, I would probably go to work for a development project supporting women inva developing country.

garlicbutter Wed 04-May-11 13:20:29

Excellent post imo, Thistle smile

IMO (having continued to think about this since originally posting on the thread) is that in order for the patriarchy to be dismantled, the main thing that has to change is MEN.

How can men change their attitudes/ have their attitudes changed?

-sons can be raised by enlightened feminist families.
-husbands and partners can be influenced by their wives/partners
-possibly most effective of all, pro-feminist men can work on the other men they encounter and fight against misogyny/sexism in all its forms.

Women fighting is important, nay essential, but I don't think true change will ever happen unless men change.

HHLimbo Sat 07-May-11 02:01:49

The way to make them change is to change ourselves.

As Xenia would say; go for the money, fight for the money.

I would add; get vocal.

As a result of this thread, I have decided to stop being nicey nice if someone does something that pisses me off or hurts me, and vocalise it.

Also I want to write to my MP and basically hassle him on every unfair policy. What do you think? Is there somewhere to find out which policies will be debated?

YY to hassling MPs!

Many of them are on FB/Twitter now (I'm FB friends with mine) so that may be one way of getting quick access to them.
I haven't checked, but I imagine there may be info online on the government website and/or HoC website regarding policy debates etc....

Financial clout is definitely useful for women and one area in which to gain power within capitalist patriarchal constructs. But how would that fight effectively against porn/prostitution/rape - all instruments (it seems to me) of keeping women as 2nd class citizens at best, less than human at worst?

(answering own question after thinking about it)

Giving women more economic independence would presumably mean fewer would feel forced to sell their bodies to men.
So we need to look at ways of encouraging wealth to reach the most vulnerable women so they don't need to do this.

That removes economic coercion from that equation, anyway.

I suspect wiping out porn and prostitution would also help reduce rape - the more women are seen as human beings by men, the less they would feel able to treat them in this way.
But I think that would only be one part of changing the mindset that permits the rape epidemic to continue all over the world.

garlicbutter Sat 07-May-11 12:29:15

Well, giving this thread's title a slightly more practical twist, it might be "How to undermine male entitlement?" You can certainly do that by building economic & politcal clout among women. So the other part of the question might be "How to build female entitlement?" That part's even more important, imo. A bunch of undermined, sexist men would be very likely to attack those who undermined them (women) even harder. Women need to feel more entitled, so as to resist attack.

You can see this happening in changes to the law - the laws get changed, by men who've listened to women, then women feel scared to invoke them and they are subverted by sexist judges. Economic strength does help with confidence smile Imagine a rich woman being accused of "crying rape" against a poor man. Would the judiciary be less likely to agree with the man in those circumstances? I think they would.

Prolesworth Sat 07-May-11 13:12:57

Message withdrawn

"yet when a group (he was writing about colonized people) are oppressed by violence (as women are the world over), how can it be countered non-violently?" I wonder that too. Tiananmen square being a perfect example. How is peaceful protest effective when your oppressors open fire on you without conscience. Yes, you may have the moral high ground but you still end up dead hmm.

I hate violence btw. Really hate it. But what is the answer when people are trying to kill you?

JamesHuff Wed 29-Jun-11 04:19:47

LOL The MRAs are all over these threads now, documenting everything. I'm looking forward to seeing how reactionary it gets here when they start arguing back in mass.

HerBeX Wed 29-Jun-11 18:26:17

Oh we're all quaking in our boots, troll

sunshineandbooks Thu 07-Jul-11 15:53:58

I'm doing my bit to eliminate the patriarchy by refusing to live in a less-than-satisfactory relationship. I would like to see more women leave unhappy relationships.

I am not against marriage BTW, just crap ones.

I'd like to see a growth in communities, rather than couples. I think we should stop seeing the marriage as the focal point of our social structure, but instead focus on positive lifestyles - which include single parents, same-sex relationships, friends, and communal living as well as nuclear families.

If women started rejecting crap marriages en masse, I think men would be forced to 'shape up' more. There would be a lot more happy relationships around.

The only way to do that it to provide greater economic support for women and families who choose to reject coupledom.

Abolish benefits based on households, focus on individuals - we do it with tax after all.

We need some philanthropists to come along and buy whole villages to house communities of say, single mothers (as just one example). Childcare can be exchanged for money or food or other services etc, and because all these women have had to do it all on their own beforehand, the chances are they will treat the help with a lot more respect than their previous partners did.

If I win the lottery I intend to pioneer something like this.

<doesn't hold breath>

clarlce Sun 10-Jul-11 22:17:10

Tie dads to the kitchen sink. Seriously - the reason there aren't enough women in powerful positions is because they dont believe in themselves. The Father - Daughter relationships is critical. Put simply, girls who get loads of attention from their dads become confident women who feel they're able and worthy of such positions.

orsinian Mon 11-Jul-11 20:57:14

If women started rejecting crap marriages en masse, I think men would be forced to 'shape up' more.


What they will do is the same as they do in the States; import and marry Thai and Filipino girls. And its not hard to observe; watch inside any mall car park and see the station wagons draw up, with plenty of portly dudes sporting 19-year-old (or less) Pacific wives.

In the US the MRA crowd routinely advocate a life without marriage, and its not just some cynical ploy. There are plenty of 40+ 'mustangs' still acting like they are 18 years old. These blokes positively adore the single life.

Don't think men would 'shape up'. More likely it will be 'ho-hum' and off down the pub.

jennyvstheworld Mon 01-Aug-11 19:58:50

The way to destroy the patriarchy is to create a global economy where high levels of productive labour can be achieved by people for whom work is equal or secondary to their private lives. At the moment people reach the top through selfless dedication to work, and that has traditionally been men - men who have made the sacrifice of coming home after their children have gone to bed, foregoing social occasions to attend a meeting and changing plans at a moment's notice to meet a new deadline. It seems to me that most of us have to make a decision about that horrible cliche 'work/life balance' and if we want more time to ourselves in the evenings and weekends we have to accept that work-a-holics will get promoted above us (and earn more...). That's the case whomever you are...

UselessForeskinHiddenSurgeon Sun 07-Aug-11 04:05:15

there is one way to demolish the patriarchy for sure no matter what your definition may be...

put all the patriarchs on the isle of white. the people of the isle of white may need some convincing or possible evacuation (at least all the non patriarchal types)

confidence Wed 07-Sep-11 21:25:13

Not that I disagree with many of the ideas already expressed here, but don't forget one thing: who pays the piper, calls the tune.

If you really want to force the world to change in a particular way, you need to follow the money. It's probably pertinent that this thread started with an observation about money - the pay gap.

Now this ought to be relatively easy, given that women make up some 50% of the population. And that despite some things like pay differentials, their capital ownership and spending power is fast catching up with mens'.

I suspect the problem is what ClassWar pointed out - a great many women, possibly the majority, just aren't that interested in radical feminist change. I have spoken to plenty of women who really don't see themselves as subject to a patriarchy. It probably depends a lot what field you work in. You can talk about company directors, but most people don't work or move in those circles so it's not really that meaningful to them. In some fields, there appears to be no real sexism affected job prospects at all, so women within then just don't see the problem.

You would need to convince a critical mass of these women that there is a problem, that it's important enought to warrant sacrifice for radical change, and then that they should direct their money accordingly - eg only buying from female-owned business etc. Not sure how you do that.

jamma111 Wed 23-Nov-11 14:42:16

Try turning it around;

You would need to convince a critical mass of these women that there is a problem, that it's important enought to warrant sacrifice for radical change, and then that they should direct their money accordingly - eg only buying from female-owned business etc.

You would need to convince a critical mass of these men that there is a problem, that it's important enought to warrant sacrifice for radical change, and then that they should direct their money accordingly - eg only buying from male-owned business etc.

I'm sure the idea isn't to actually give the MRA lot a strategy to get their demands heard.

This would doom an awful lot of women-run businesses.

ChocolateMuffin32 Thu 05-Jan-12 16:27:22

Cut of there balls.

PromQueenWithin Fri 02-Mar-12 11:08:51

I haven't had time to read the whole thread (for which I apologise and I will come back later and do so with interest).

I just wanted to contribute something in response to the title. I think we should challenge the patriarchy whenever we can, whenever we notice it. For example, I have just asked my solicitor (house sale) to address us as Mrs and Mr PromQueen. The (female) paralegal was surprised and not sure their computer system would allow it. I await the result of my request with interest...

As you were.

rubmeup Mon 19-Mar-12 17:00:02

I feel sorry for BC's child

<Eats crisps>

I hear M&S are reporting a big surge in sales this weekend, I can't think why.

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