Rose Madrid-Swetman

— Random Thoughts, Stories of Life, and Questions about the Journey —


January 28, 2012

Signs of Patriarchy

Category: All Posts,women – Rose – 10:28 am

If you want to know the truth I wish I didn’t have to think about equality for women. In a perfect world men and women would be seen as equal and would be in places of influence based on character, talent, etc. The same would be true of any group of people that are marginalized, and suffer oppression in any form from the dominate group that holds the most power and influence in any situation.

I just finished reading, Gender Knot Revised Ed: Unraveling Our Patriarchal Legacy, by Allan G. Johnson. Johnson on patriarchy:

“A society is patriarchal to the degree that it promotes male privilege* by being male dominated, male identified, and male centered. It is also organized around an obsession with control and involves as one of its key aspects the oppression of women.”
Allan G. Johnson. Gender Knot Revised Ed: Unraveling Our Patriarchal Legacy (Kindle Locations 112-113). Kindle Edition.

I am thinking about this concept with regard to the Christian Church.

It seems naming this condition out loud causes good people to be uncomfortable, defensive and a bit reactive. In an exercise Johnson conducted in a workshop with business men and women he asked them to name advantages and disadvantages the other gender has. As they reported their findings through the process and results a blanketing silence settled over the room. Johnson reports:

“The result is a kind of paralysis that reflects not only where this particular group-and countless others like it-finds itself as it confronts the reality of gender inequality, but where entire societies are in relation to these issues.”
Allan G. Johnson. Gender Knot Revised Ed: Unraveling Our Patriarchal Legacy (Kindle Locations 102-103). Kindle Edition.

Any denomination, movement or church that does not fully include women as equals to men is compiled of men and women who knowingly or unknowingly participate in a patriarchal structure.

This is what I am thinking about today…

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