Picking up from where we left off last week, here are some more notes on gender and power. First, a refresher on where we started:
1. There is a lot of bad theorizing out there about gender and power relations
Primordial matriarchies, evo-psych patriarchies — all bunk.
2. Patriarchy is not inherent in human societies.
Patriarchy is a historical development, not a biological imperative.
Carrying on now:
3. There are many different kinds of patriarchy
As I explained last week, patriarchy is not a universal of human societies but rather a product of specific historical circumstances. As a result, there are as many different varieties of patriarchy as there are cultures that practice it. There is no “the patriarchy” any more than there is “the democracy” or “the music.” Some democracies have parliaments, some have electoral colleges, and some just have town meetings. Some music has violins, some has taiko drums, and some has beatboxing. Patriarchies are just as variable.
Consider, if you will, Victorian Britain and the Roman empire. Both were unquestionably patriarchal, but that doesn’t mean they worked the same way.