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Political Science
POLS 2150
Carol L Dauda

Patriarchy, the System Allan Johnson •Many men take the concept of patriarchy personally o Sometimes they feel defensive because they identify with it and it's values and don’t want to face the consequences of facing it and changing •We live in a society where everything begins and ends with individuals (ie evil, racism) o Concept of men wanting to dominate women= gender oppression o People in the upperclasses are greedy cruel= poverty o OPPOSITE TO THAT: • Not guilt and blame- • Race gender and class oppression aren't oppression at all- just the sum of people failing •Idea that "the system" is running us all •If we see patriarchy as nothing more than men's and women's individual personalities, motivations and behaviours- it probably wouldn't occur to us to ask about the larger contexts- (ie institutions- family, religion, economy) o We would ask why a man would rape a woman o But we wouldn’t ask what kind of society would promote persistent patterns of such behaviour •We all participate in something larger than ourselves- patriarchy o More than just a collection of individuals (men) •It’s a system- it can't be reduced to the people who participate in it - similar to stepping into a corporation o Must be understood as more than just it's participants • Same with patriarchy- more than a collection of women and men •Patriarchy can exist without men having oppressive personalities o Men don't have to be villains and women don't have to be victims o If society is oppressive, people who grow up and live in it will tend to accept, identify with, and participate in it as "normal" • Path of lease resistance "The System" •Any collection of interrelated parts of elements that we can think of as a whole o Ie- car engine - collection of parts that fit together to produce a whole o Language is also a collection of parts • Alphabets, words, punctuation etc o Societies too have variety of parts that make up a whole o Related to concept of game: Monopoly • Different players+ functions, positions • We can think of it as a social system • We can talk about it as a system without ever talking about personal characteristics or motivations of the individual people who play • game encourages people to take from one another and feel good about it - doesn’t make you greedy or merciless- but the game is about winning o Those patterns are shaped by the game- more than the individuals •Ie concept of capitalism exists because people want profit o BUT the reason why people want profit is because of the world we live in o We aren't born with it- it doesn't exist in many cultures o Ie managers firing employees- not heartless •Sexism- o Result of poor socialization thru which men learn to act dominant and masculine o Women learn to act subordinate and feminine •While there's some truth to this- it doesn’t work to explain gender oppression- o We must look beyond individuals and into society •Idea that change is most often applied to the MOST oppressed- who have the least to lose and in the weakest position to challenge the system as a whole. And the MOST privileged, who can afford to attend workshops+ therapy. •Idea that men believe they can find a nicer way to be less oppressive without challenging the system o Not true - like the myth of kinder capitalism (interpersonal sensitivity when firing) • Same result- feel better about it •Individualistic model offers little hope of changing patriarchy- it's a system encompassing feelings, behaviours, thoughts- but it is o A way of organizing social life through which wounding, failure and mistreatment can occur Patriarchy •Defining elements o Male-dominated, male-identified, male-centered •It is a set of symbols and ideas that make up a culture embodied by everything from the content of everyday conversation to literature •It includes ideas about the nature of things o Ie men, women, humanity •Generally the way society views gender roles •Idea of words meaning's changing over time (virgin, witch) •Misogyny o Doesn’t mean a conscious hate o Objectifying women as sexual property The System in Us in the System •We're involved in it •People need to participate for it to exist o IE capitalism •We are all involved in patriarchy o Cannot control whether we participate only how One Hundred Years of Homosexuality David Halperin I •1992- one hundred year since the invention of homosexuality by Charles Gilbert Chaddock o Credited with having introduced "homo-sexuality" into the English language in the Psycho
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