Men! Who Are We?

 

It Seems I’ve Missed Something

For decades now we’ve heard of Women’s Liberation and the end of the subjugation of women but I hear precious little of exploration by men about what it means for men. By that I mean, who are men and who are they to become? Are they to simply accept the changing place of women but not explore themselves? If it is being discussed, it seems to be in a whisper with a whimper.

That does not mean I’m an advocate of a roaring fight against the liberation of women by men. It quite simply means such monumental change in human history suggests there will have to be monumental changes by men and certainly more than whimper.

Fundamental Reexamination of Self

Without men’s role assessment or self examination it is impossible to make a meaningful adaptation and response to this change. It is hardly a sudden event. It has been coming for many decades even if we just look at the fight for the vote by women. But the movement is growing and I would contend that men should see this as an opportunity for them.

An opportunity to yield power? Probably, but there’s a lot more to it. As a man I must say that I see us having a constricted identity. I won’t even begin to try to delineate who and how we are because it’s not up to me. It is up to us as a whole and must indicate a productive commitment to change. Instead we seem to see resistance of various kinds. Even if there was no challenge, it is time for us to examine ourselves.

Meanwhile Back at Identity

What we are seeing is a long overdue movement to diversify identity which is causing confusion. There is considerable resistance when people present themselves as homosexual, bisexual, multisexual or whatever. The fact of the matter is that we are complex and there is place for all of our various iterations.

But a prominent focus seems to be on limited acceptance of women being liberated and gaining power. Granted some of it may be resistance to yielding power by men but as it is being done we are failing at self examination.

This Is An Opportunity

Dare I use the word liberation when it comes to men? Is it possible that we need to face that there has been some form of subjugation by our own sex even while we concentrate on restraining women? We might actually gain a great deal if we focus on what men might gain rather than what they might need to yield. At base perhaps we all need to take on liberation and an end to subjugation. Who are we as men and what possibilities might we open for ourselves?

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

Feelings of Inadequacy and Powerlessness

 

Personal Management

To fulfill our potential requires not just commitment and dedication for success. It also requires us to deal with our perceptions of ourselves and our belief or understanding of our strengths and weaknesses. Perspective is needed to balance such things as our talents or lack of interest. Our weaknesses need not drive down our self esteem. Everyone has strengths and weaknesses. It’s also a matter of orchestrating our motivation with self esteem. And it is often not so easy to understand our strengths and how they may benefit us. The bottom line is that management of the self involves management of an orchestra.

We cannot all be talented in the same way. Where we do not have talent we may have lack of interest or commitment or we may view something as inessential. Men have sports heroes and we are instructed to admire and follow in their footsteps. But some of us are not interested and where formerly this may be seen as an inadequacy or a weakness it can be transformed into a view of lack of interest because there are other talents which offer potential for growth and satisfaction. The confinement may be in what men do to each other. Part of the question relates to recognizing the extent and diversity of effects on each other. All too often there is an
enforced lack of introspection especially if the issue is not to be discussed.

And Then There is the Sexual Arena

Now before us we are seeing considerable evidence of the issue of male sexual abuse. Boys may ask each other, “Did you get any?” This is a depersonalization of women and helps lay groundwork for abusers. This question comes from the outside and, if the young man has values which indicate to him that he wants to not treat women as objects, self esteem may come to be at question.

Establishing a Useful Focus

As the sexual abuse scandals have become highlighted we see a central focus on males exercising power. We need to not overlook the other possibilities and it would need to be central to male group discussions. For many men it is not primarily a matter of power but one of THEIR self esteem. And when women step forward and talk about how they were abused they are too often punished and shouted down which makes matters worse.

We need to recognize that men may push and harass women sexually not because they are exercising power but because they feel powerless and inadequate. In short, it may be compensatory.They hope they may prevail and feel more powerful or worthwhile. Just as when Trump strikes out because his narcissism isn’t being fed. These behaviors can be more indicative of insecurity, fears, powerlessness and personal flaws rather than an exercise of power. They reveal weakness. These men may avoid despair by attempting to reassure themselves and their worth. Otherwise they can collide with a personal negativity.

Self As Trash

If a man believes he is trash then the subjugation of others may enhance, for the moment, their feeling of their own worth. But these kinds of self disregard can be assuaged only temporarily. Self concept and what we believe in ourselves is a virtual statue of self image we carry with us. And if it is dubious or negative then it must be supported and dealt with over and over because there is no event in day to day life which will thoroughly mitigate it unless there is a thoroughgoing search of the meaning and substance of ones self regard and belief. And men, when they are willing to search and admit can help each other with this problem. And so we return again to the meaning and need for men to self examine together. We share these flaws in self and in male culture. One of the leading indicators of this problem being underlying is seen in the man who must always receive praise and adulation. Enjoying recognition and celebration is one thing but the insistence and extent of need indicates a personal flaw.

The Bottom Line

If all the above seems complicated, it is because it is complicated. We need to examine these various themes and lay them out before us. If we focus only on power, we lose track of the variety of things which feed the dysfunction. We have our work cut out for us.

How often have you been able to perceive this process in men?

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

The Issues For and From Men

 

Again I come back to asking men to examine themselves and their culture. The change there must be on the horizon is not up to women alone. While there were men who were wise and made crucial contributions in the past, there are also many men in history who had devastating effects.

Exercising Power to Dominate Others

One of the issues most often noted when we discuss abuses by men is the issue of power. We see efforts to dominate and control others. Certainly women see this especially in the way women are subjugated. When men introspect many often see this issue as a force in their own lives. It begins early and may be displayed in peer groups and in the form of “leadership” they exercise in such groups. And later certainly it comes up in business and military settings of all kinds. Bullies portray it and it comes out in sports. Less often it is at issue in school performance which has an objective measure.

Widespread Manifestation

Over a lifetime these themes are manifested in ever so many settings and is something that men suffer as well as women. But women have suffered more and it is still at issue. It may be domination in meetings, harassment by other workers in various forms. Thus, it comes out in competition of all kinds, even in adult life. It is rarely brought up but it is something that we all must contend with. Now is the time when it should begin to be highlighted.

Power as a display of sexual supremacy

But the primary issue placed before us now is the issue of sexual domination and harassment. The matter begins early. “Did you get any?” one boy may ask another. Real men are supposed to be preeminently successful in not just winning favor but in taking it. Certainly when this topic is brought up it is frequently greeted with insistent denial. But, no matter how we try to push it away, there is an implicit theme especially among men at a younger age. Of course, it then carries over to later in life. It may be a matter of competition and personal belief that a man should take sexual domination because power of all kinds is the province of men—supposedly. Too often it is not examined as a principle which is right or a valid pursuit.

Failure to Examine Supports Abuse

Of course, especially to the degree that it is not examined, it may support abuse of all kinds—even molestation and rape. It may feed issues of self esteem and perceptions of strength among male peer groups.

It cannot be overestimated how much there are underlying issues in male culture. Any attempt to raise them usually leads to denial, even anger at its mention. Certainly men don’t want to discuss it with and before women especially as we enter the era of empowering women. But they do not relish opening the issues with each other either. It is a touchy and difficult subject.

It Must Be Dealt With

But again I come back to the necessity for men to air it among themselves at last. Among each other is where it should begin in an honest environment. If there is resistance, then we must ask, in a forthright fashion, why and for what reasons.

These core issues lay the groundwork for our future. The power of men is eroding whether they like it or not and realignment for the future requires the retirement of denial.

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

The Importance of Women Marching Is Being Overlooked

 

We are so proud of you!

Time to Pay Attention

We have just had a second large and important women’s march. The coverage and analysis has not done it justice. The import needs to be writ large. It is time to look in depth on the public stage.

There’s Something Fundamental – Attention!

Much focus of news is on Trump and dreadful political dysfunction in Washington but something much more fundamental is happening. We can begin to see special importance when we ask, Why are women marching? There are some notes about equality and health care rights but there is clearly insufficient attention to the depth and meaning of this movement. The coverage is dreadfully superficial.

Time to Probe

I have to be insistent. Stop and ask why women are marching. Surely it is more than one focused issue or restlessness. I hear very little in terms of in depth questions. is it the young (millenials) or is there more to it? There has been a groundswell of a wave coming for decades now. Superficial attachment to one issue is common but surely there is depth and complexity. We may be surprised at what we find.

What Do Men Think?

And then there is the matter of men. What do men think about what women are doing now that they are on the streets? There are some men visible among the women but I hear no coverage or only a minuscule amount off coverage of what men think. Do they support women? Or what part of women’s demands? Why or why not?

Write Our Questions Large

I can’t emphasize enough the import of what is happening with women and it is not just in the United States. Honestly I’m not even sure if all the women know why they are in the streets. It doesn’t seem political. And I suspect it goes beyond ending subjugation. We may focus on visible issues but surely there are many others lurking.

Or if it is called political, why are we letting people get away with that because fundamentally that means the true meaning of the movement is being dismissed. We are throwing everything in the trash hopper of politics these days.

And What of Men

And with what is coming out we have a lot of questions of men. Who are these sexual abusers? Who are these power hungry men? We have to step back and ask in depth why they are doing these things. It is often dismissed as a matter of power. Yes for some. But that is insufficient. And does abusing women really satisfy a sexual need. The psychologist here is jumping up and down because he doesn’t believe those simplicities tell us what is happening or why it is happening. There is often a matter of compensatory functioning for felt inadequacies. People who have deep feelings of inadequacy or view the self as trash will often drive for power and abuse others. I can’t begin to open the depth of issues in this format but there are questions which must be asked. Things are often not what they seem.

And, of course, there is the matter of what the male culture has often done to men. Those set of issues need exploration.

Potential and More

Beyond issues of rectifying abuses there is the matter of potential. I’ve said it before and I’m going to say it over and over…we are missing the potential of half of our population and men are missing out on the full potential of women, of part of their own potential and the intriguing benefits of in depth partnership with women.

I’ve been following the women’s movement since the 1960s and we are seeing a deeply rooted cultural change. Women and men alike are struggling with it. And part of the reason is that we aren’t truly probing these changes. Some of it seems to be related to effective birth control coming under the control of women. And there are men who are working hard to snatch control back from them.

Benefits For Men and All of Us

In earlier posts I’ve said there is a lot about the male culture that I find offensive and ineffective if not stultifying. And so now women are offering us alternatives and new blending. This is an exciting opportunity to be seized. Can we take off our blinders and fight back against our denial? This is a fight to benefit every single one of us even those who would crush the women’s movement. Right now we need to probe what is happening and giving it true in depth coverage.

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

A Focus on Patriarchy – Pt. 7

 

 

Levels of Interaction

Cutting to the Core

It is ever so easy to simply focus on a conflict which we clearly have as women press for an end to their subjugation. But resistance to change is not the core issue although it must be confronted. The issue is our future and what the flow of culture is creating.

Among Animals

Yes, we are animals and like all animals we struggle. But there is a difference because of the magnitude of the meaning of the outcome. If we triumph, we do not merely triumph over other human beings but we triumph in the salvation of our planet and entire races of beings. The stakes have gotten that high. We are no longer just hunters/gatherers. And among us are people of vision such as Elon Musk among others. Also among us are the power hungry with vision only of themselves and their financial gain in the display of their sociopathy.

Seizing the Opportunity

At the edge of our awareness we are turning over thoughts about the future. We wonder how much longer capitalism will endure and what will follow it. Over the centuries we have seen one form of ruler come after the other. Absolute rulers fostered endless conflict and subjugation in the ancient world. Interlocking royal families ruled Europe but their decline did not bring peace and fascism came to call.

Above all we need vision at this time and it will require positing goals for the future and how we attain them. In bits and pieces vision will help us gain a way forward. Yes, the culture which bears it will be glacial but at some point it becomes climacteric. And, in my estimation I see the greatest promise is found in the women among us. It is a force yet to be fully released.

And I shudder even at using the word force but I see it in a sense as a component of a cultural flow.

What Is Happening

The rising of women is something which wraps me and my attention. I see the patriarchy failing not just in the sense of our questioning their right and legitimacy but in the fact of their decline. And at the edge of the process working into the center are the women.

Daily I delight to see the women appearing on the news shows. Young, engaged, talented and forthcoming with their opinions and talent.They are less afraid, more assertive and balanced. What I am viewing is ever so far form what I saw in my youth and is what I sighted in the sixties. It didn’t just draw my attention, it commanded my attention.

The Cutting Edge

From time to time in human history we see breathtaking development. Perhaps we fail to see them moment to moment or even month to month. The Renaissance was such a time. Rome and the ancient world declined as the Vandals, Visigoths and others rose to bring an end to their tyranny. It did not bring wonderful change. It brought the Dark Ages and much of the scholarly pursuits retreated to distant libraries to be tended by Middle East scholars and people like Irish Monks. Then the world exploded.

Without question we are seeing an entirely new type of explosion and many are telling us and warning us that it is at hand. Whether it elevates us or devastates us is open to question. But, I would suggest that the empowerment of women may be at the core of the possibility for transformation. Perhaps at last we can come to a markedly beneficial transformation. We have great struggles yet to be overcome but I’m convinced that women hold a key element for that transformation. Are we now to replace a focus on power with a focus on wonder and creation?

These thoughts may be dismissed as merely misguided hope but we will see won’t we?

What have you concluded? Please let me hear your thoughts. roger.burt@earthlink.net

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

A Focus on Patriarchy – Pt. 6

Continuing to Share

Family Origins

Since I’m calling for men to come together to share who they are and how things are for them, I’m going to continue to share in this format.

My family was definitely not a feminist bastion. It focused on our home where my mother tended that home and the two sons. My father had a certain authority in those days as the man of the household and partly because he was surgeon.

Interestingly, he had a distinct tinge of feminist leanings and he made it clear to me that he supported women coming into medicine as physicians and did not see women coming to power as a threat. His attitude had a leveling quality to the coming reality.

My mother was not antifeminism but it was nothing she would have fought for. It was simply that her background meant this home with a successful man who had fought his way out of poverty in Mississippi was just fine with her. She could not have wanted more.

Another Direction

It feels to me that I had been freed by distancing myself from “normal” male identity.

It seems my nature is what led me away from patriarchy toward support of feminism. I was always intrigued by possibilities and sought novelty. I regret (though it could not have been otherwise) that there were no computers until long after my youth. I would have been a rabid computer nerd. I was not competitive unless wanting to do a good job and get things done was a form of competitiveness. I never saw power as important and often was dumbstruck by venal men in power and what fools so many of them were as they served only themselves.

Who Men Are

Some say men are competitive and aggressive. I was neither. My favorite book as a young child was Ferdinand the Bull. His core attribute was that he loved to smell the flowers. My mother read it over and over to me. Again, if there was any competitiveness, it related to doing that job well and uncovering new possibilities which could be pursued relentlessly.

I learned the limits of male power over time and found it often errant and saw endless skirmishes around men who sought power and domination at all costs. As I watched men pursue power and their own financial interests, I came to see the limitations of their power and its worth. I learned to fear them not at all. In my estimation the shallowness of their pursuits disappointed me. And to this day I see their pursuits were often damaging to so many among us. If my future was impaired by their machinations, then I could go somewhere else. Something else is always possible. And, of course, as is apparent, not all men are devoted to power and financially focused sociopathy.

What Satisfies

Of course not all things, no matter how long they have dominated, will endure. I believe in the cultural flow and know its relentless nature. It may be glacial but it does flow and requires endurance and patience. We see that need for patience in the empowerment of women. From the suffragettes, women in World War II, women’s liberation and on to today we see their endurance and, yes, gains. There is much more to come.

In another regard, what do you see coming and what would you wish? Please let me hear from you. roger.burt@earthllink.net

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

Discovering How Life Really is

 

Where Our Identity Comes From

Establishing an identity is a complicated process. It has to do with who is available for us to identify with, our ability patterns, intelligence, and our personality. And I think you can probably come up with other factors.

Given my dissatisfaction and lack of interest in many things which are supposed to interest and enthrall boys meant I sought other things. I chose to explore science, looked at the world as my family traveled, and sought to experience the world in general. That is hardly a comprehensive list because opportunities were always presenting themselves. For me I think personality was central. I wanted to seek out possibilities and unique opportunities.

My Father and I

Naturally my father played a role. I was closer to him than my brother was. Even as a surgeon he liked to get his hands dirty in the yard. He never got entirely away from his early years in rural Mississippi. We went deep sea fishing off Montauk on Long Island, he taught me to shoot which I liked as a hobby but not when it involved killing animals and he took me to ball games which I endured until the day when we went to a Yankee double header. The first game was 26 innings. Enough was enough. He was handy around the house and built furniture. Those things interested me.

Doing a Good Job

One thing that was particularly important to me was doing a good job. Power was not of interest. Getting things done especially in new ventures was of considerable interest. Too often though I saw men of power who lacked vision. When I took the job in the inner city Baltimore I was stunned.

The heads of the psychiatry department were utterly lacking in vision and the psychologists were no better. The latter group invited me to join them and in the first meeting they spent the entire time talking about how they could try to seem more important to the psychiatrists. I never went back. There was substantive work to be done. And even worse there were no women in the central halls of power. Oh yes, there was a nursing department but what I saw out in the programs on the street was their frustration as they did battle with the men in power. At basic levels there were women nurses and social workers who contributed to diversity of viewpoints. But at the top levels there were men only.

Closed Systems

Because of the import of the job I had to face a closed male system. And it was inevitable that I would come to view the men as struggling with their image of themselves and the threat involved by the women struggling for recognition and a say in a new enterprise. As it turned out this was just at the cusp of the Women’s Liberation movement of the 1960s and their meaning and substance utterly engaged me.

Masculinity

What kept emerging over time was seeing in men a central problem in their discomfort with masculinity. They often seemed to feel they did not measure up but when you stepped back it was essential to wonder why there had to be a universal code of masculinity.

But it seemed that fear was a core element and that also surfaces in discussions of patriarchy. It seems likely that progress in our various intersexual relationships may require clearly facing the issue of fear. And honestly I think this will be a monumental task. Men have financial interests in league with the matter of power which is an impediment to change. But at base I think the most important issue and the one which will relate to a turning point is the matter of fear.

What issues do you feel will be crucial? Please let me hear from you at: roger.burt@earthlink.net

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

A Time For Men and Women to Move Forward Together

 

Women May Lead the Way Into Our Future

Through history at least fifty percent of our population (women) have been subjugated. The Amazon women and Viking Shield Maidens are examples of exceptions.

In the 1960s, when the Women’s Liberation movement flowered, I was intrigued and, at a conference, saw the opportunity to attend a women’s group. I went to the gathering but was turned away because, in that dawning era, the women sought to discuss the issues among themselves only. At first I felt a sense of disappointment, but finally saw it was best for them to probe the issues and set a course on their own.

A Cultural Surge

And now every day women are calling out regarding the need for their empowerment and expressing their outrage at things such as sexual harassment and the glass ceiling. Among other things they point to specific men, incidents and misogyny. We can’t turn back now. Women generally feared coming out and pointing at the men who abused and harassed them. But now the door of confinement has been broken open and it cannot be closed again.

Coming Together to Shape Our Collective Future

Now it’s time for men to come together, not in opposition, but to permit men to reveal who they are personally, how they have been and the processes and alliances which direct their development. The reformulation of our societies is not to be done by women alone, as they call for an end to subjugation and an evaluation of misogyny, its origins and how to control it. This is an opening to a special once in a lifetime opportunity that will surely expand and evolve. Now that we begin the process of empowering women we release a new rich fund of creativity and intellectual prowess to benefit all of us.

As women are empowered, we advance the opportunity for them to fulfill their full potential. And now men need to face themselves and find a way to fulfill their own full potential. Yes, the male culture and the attitude of men are often holding them back and all of us as well. And now we may seize that most fruitful partnership with women and the bounty it can yield. It’s important to be clear that the end to subjugation of both men and women, in all its forms, holds unforeseen possibilities leading us collectively into an enhanced future.

Please let me hear from you. roger.burt@earthlink.net

 

 

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

A New Year of Peril and Promise

 

Coming this spring, Gaia’s Majesty:Challenge – The Chosen Rise.

Book 2 in the Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy.

 

 

           

A New Year of Peril and Promise

Intriguing Possibilities

Now comes a new year. It is both a year fraught with peril for America but one which also holds extraordinary promise. By and large I’m going to leave the political analyses to others although it is very hard to separate politics from policy and process, including the content in fiction writing.

This year in my blog I’m going to cover a variety of topics.In the spring the second book of my Gaia’s Majesty Trilogy will be published. (See cover at top of page.) Among issues I will be covering related to the trilogy will be the origins of the story in the series, expanded commentary about key Andromeda women warriors in Majesty, and commentary on some issues facing authors. I’m also going to make a few comments related to the adventures my wife and I had in the Caribbean as the world expanded for us. But the major focus near term will be the issue of the empowerment of women and a call for men to examine themselves and their culture. What is happening with women offers huge potential. It is an opportunity we must seize.

Call for a Movement

A Collective Search

We have a feminist movement and it’s time for a masculinist movement. If you think that means a movement in opposition to feminism, that is the opposite of what is needed. We need a movement in which men together evaluate themselves, male culture and what has been holding them back. We can only dimly see where that may lead us.

With this new year and all its import, I’m going to begin a new series which I’m calling the Masculinism Movement. (Hear the echoes of the words “Feminism Movement”.) The Women’s Liberation Movement in the 1960s opened with women coming together in groups to evaluate their positions and their way forward. Now that we are entering a period where we look toward full empowerment of women, it’s time for men to come together in groups to assess the male culture and to own how they have been and what has been done to them. The recent cresting of sexual harassment allegations are instructive but are only one facet of problems in the male culture.

As noted, the proposed Masculinism Movement is not a movement purely to empower men. It is a movement in which men assess themselves and assess what has been holding them back in general and especially in regard to women. It is an opportunity to examine the male culture and the roots of their need to dominate and keep women subjugated. Men even inhibit the reproductive health care of their wives, mothers, children and grandchildren. It is a wholly irrational process. This is not how men are but a cultural issue.

A Personal Opportunity

Rarely have I seen men come together to deal with their culture and how their lives have been shaped by what is often tyranny and control by their fellows. Rarely is it even mentioned, but it is often assumed that men simply feed upon power and domination. There is surely a lot more to it that many men have not examined and that includes the influence of all forms of male culture in their lives. These influences extend to their relationships with women and how they function in our society. If men are to change and we are to truly open the full potential for our future, men must examine themselves. That is the force of the movement and it can help us reshape our societies. And some of the issues for men surely may relate to insecurity or distorted self concepts often reflecting what has happened to them personally or as a function of the larger male cultures.

Please let me hear your thoughts.

roger.burt@earthlink.net

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt

A Focus on Patriarchy – Pt 1

Shifting the Focus Regarding Women

(Sorry. I just couldn’t resist.)

It’s time to turn the focus to the issue of patriarchy and men. But first I believe there is a definitional problem regarding feminism.

I’m intrigued by a term I keep hearing. Radical feminism. Perceptions that suppression of women needs to end and be replaced by empowerment seems to me to be anything but radical. So, I did some research and came up with the following definitions of radical feminism.

Definitions of Radical Feminism

The definition from Robert Jensen’s book The End of Patriarchy is “Radical feminism is a radical, structural politicized response” to “patriarchy’s rigid, repressive, and reactionary gender norms.”

Wikipedia – “Radical feminism is a perspective within feminism that calls for a radical reordering of society in which male supremacy is eliminated in all social and economic contexts.

Another is – “Radical feminism is a philosophy emphasizing the patriarchal roots of inequality between men and women, or, more specifically, social dominance of women by men. Radical feminism views patriarchy as dividing rights, privileges and power primarily by gender, and as a result oppressing women and privileging men.” (The site from which I drew this definition shall remain nameless because when I type the name my fonts go crazy. Creepy!)

New Question

I think I need to turn the whole thing on its head by asking the question, “What is the justification for subjugating women?” The fact that subjugation exists is not justification. A woman’s place is in the home is not justification. Men do all things better (that’s laughable) is hardly appropriate. I won’t bother with more space to note absurd justifications.

I prefer to simply deal with the movement of feminism of which there may be various forms with varying degrees of proposals and demands. To my mind, fulfillment of the potential of women and their participation in world society is anything but radical. As far as I’m concerned we can ditch the term radical.

The Bottom Line

I have to wonder what the perceived benefits for society as a whole are by subjugating half the population of earth. And then I get to the point where I wonder why we are even having a debate. Does it simply come down to a male stating “because I said so” ?

Sometimes I think we get so caught up in debates that we make it one form of an academic discussion in which we pick over words. In this instance I’m fascinated by why we are even having this debate. Once we note that women have been the focus of discrimination and subjugation it seems reasonable to focus and make changes. Granted we haven’t done so well with racism which we have declared to be inappropriate and damaging. Now we know some people declare against racism but behave in a racist fashion anyway. The same thing is happening with women and there is a certain absurdity attached to this debate. With the subjugation of women, though, there seem to be a cadre of insistent defenders of subjugation who must be dealt with.

Gaia’s Majesty-Mission Called: Women in Power by Roger B. Burt

Roger B. Burt’s Amazon home page

Creating Characters and Plots by Roger B. Burt

Stepfamilies: Professionals and Stepcouples in Partnership

Whatever Happened to Community Mental Health by Roger B. Burt