Even the most ardent historian, male or female—citing Amazons and tribal matriarchies and Cleopatra—can’t conceal that women have basically done fuck all for the last 100,000 years. Come on—let’s admit it. Let’s stop exhaustingly pretending that there is a parallel history of women being victorious and creative, on an equal with men, that’s just been comprehensively covered up by The Man. There isn’t. Our empires, armies, cities, artworks, philosophers, philanthropists, inventors, scientists, astronauts, explorers, politicians and icons could all fit, comfortably into one of the private karaoke booths in SingStar. We have no Mozart; no Einstein; no Galileo; no Ghandi. No Beatles, no Churchill, no Hawking, no Columbus. It just didn’t happen.

Nearly everything so far has been the creation of men—and a liberal, right-on denial of it makes everything more awkward and difficult in the long run. Pretending that women have had a pop at all this before but ultimately didn’t do as well as the men, that the experiment of female liberation has already happened but floundered gives strength to the belief that women simply aren’t as good as men, full stop. That things should just carry on as they are—with the world shaped around, and honouring, the priorities, needs, whims, and successes of men. Women are over, without having even begun. When the truth is that we haven’t even begun at all. Of course we haven’t. We’ll know it when we have.

~Caitlin Moran

Do you agree or disagree with the above sentiment and statements, and why or why not?


NOTE: I'll be contrarian in the discussion, both because I find it fun, and also because echo chambers are boring.

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I don't play the oppression olympics, so I have no comment on who has been the most suppressed. Why should women achieve like Jews instead of like African Americans or Australian Aboriginals? How do you choose the correct level of potential achievement for any group?

Were you sleeping during history, or is it that your brain is so attuned to experiencing everything from the perspective of priviledge that you didn't notice the scarcity of women's accomplishments? (Is this not the premise of this entire post?) We do not remember quite a few accomplishments made by females. I think you're just making things up to suit your opinions at this point.

Forgetting the accomplishments of women might hold when it comes to journeymanly or even masterful work, but it's hard to imagine that if Beethoven was a woman we would have forgotten who wrote the 9th Symphony. Likewise if Lenin had been a woman, would we have forgotten who instigated the Russian Revolution? The suppression argument only goes so far.

No, language can be as gender as one wishes. As long as genders listen and hear each other. But that seems to be a big problem.
It is also in the choice of words. When a little boy falls down and hurts himself, many a dad will speak to him in an diffrent way than when his little girl hurts herself.
Change "man" into "woman"., or the other way around in any (funny) text and .... Well, that speaks fot itself :-)

Even the last 100 years, women did not get the same stimulus or access to education and science. It is getting better in our society, but there still is a lot of disbelieve in what women can accomplish.

Biology? Yes, of course the men's field, doctors not caring enough to look into the many deaths of women after giving birth.

The "language" of science still remains ungendered. It isn't actually a language at all, it's a process of providing evidence and conclusions. It's similar to how mathematics and music are often referred to as languages - and they are patently ungendered. 

Weeeeeeelll.. Saying that women did not have access to education and science is certainly covering up quite a bit. My dad was only offered middle school, and not really expected to do anything else. He was expected to start working at age 15, which he did. My mother, on the other hand, was expected to stay in school at least until she was done with high school. She did and then went into postal school. Those were the gender norms in Norway in the 60ies. Before that time, getting any education beyond the mandatory middle school was very uncommon for both genders, my grandmother being extremely proud of her having attended trade school and thus being more educated than my grandfather. Access to science isn't really something which is handed to you, and never has been, it is something which is actively sought out to those interested.

Actually having a doctor present at child birth is a very modern invention, it used to be the role of the midwife. Only the very top of society had access to doctors at birth until the sixties, and as i previously stated the whole process of childbirth was for the most part closed off to men - even doctors - until quite recently in our history.

And so we go on...
Yes, the language of science is what we call a vocational language. I did not mean that language.

I speak in general, never using a personal experience in a discussion. There is always a personal experience that is the exeption to the rule. But exceptions do not proof anything.

When I mention the male docters that did not wash their hands and caused many deaths, I am not talking about the midwives in other times. I merely mention it as another example of male disinterest in womanly things. I still see a lot of disbelieve in women's potemtials, even in the classroom.

BTW Fanny Mendelssohn was a composer. A number of her songs were originally published under her brother Felix's name in his opus 8 and 9 collections. Because a woman's work might not be welcomed?
Later her work was published in her name

Wiki: Her piano works are often in the manner of songs, and many carry the name Lied ohne Worte (Song without Words). This style (and title) of piano music was most successfully developed by Felix Mendelssohn, though some modern scholars assert that Fanny may have preceded him in the genre.

"And so we go on"? Ever understood the concept of a principled disagreement?

I almost feel sad for someone which doesn't appear to have any personal experiences which confirms to history. I used mine as an illustrative example to draw a few generalized conclusions about an experience which is becoming increasingly less common. Perhaps your problem is connecting with someone which comes from a farming background?

I see you manged to dig up a female composer, on which I congratulate you. Does it disprove the point that nearly all composers were men? Not in the leas. It actually confirms it, and is a bit like finding an irregular verb in German - exceptions prove the rule.

We must be on very different channels :-)
I do have a lot of personal experiences of men and women that accomplished a lot. But in my view it is not appropiate to use personal data in a discussion.

The lone female composer is not a rebut to the fact that men in the history, as we know it, accomplished more than women did. They sure did. I do not disagree with that at all.
I do not have to dig deep to find accomplishing women. They are there, though not in great numbers. Numbers are in favor of the mmale history makers. The question is: why?
The one female composer is not the issue here. The fact that at first she could only publish under her brothers name is.
If you read me well, you must have noticed that I am aware of the fact that exceptions do not prove the rule.

In a world/culture so dominated by men, the thought or voice of a woman will not be heard or understood.
Male dominated societies, religions and cultures made women into second rate persons without a voice worth listening to.

But the question is: why couldn't women have dominated? Why did they allow themselves to be made into second rate citizens? Why have female-dominated societies, religions, and cultures almost never existed in history?

It seems obvious that it must have had something to do with biology steering human culture in the direction of male-dominated arrangements, since it seems so universal. Are men guilty of taking advantage of this situation? Yeah, probably. But I don't really think any individuals, male or female, are ultimately responsible for the course of history.

Looking at diferent religions and how they originated, one could say that at first men protected "life", women. From protecting it went to overprotecting and taking away their rights to decide about their own lives. Most religions of today are into sexcism and are "protecting" thus suppressing women "for their own good".

I would say looking at religions their main focus was on controlling the populace in a time where the central government was weak and it was impossible to retain a monopoly on violence. While controlling reproduction has been a part of most religions, the subjugation of the masses have certainly been a much more important factor.

Great post.  And not to start flames, but a lot of women DO like their man to be dominant.  To make decisions for them and to be the head of the households.  To care for them and to provide money (security) for them.  Sure there are women who are obsessed with success in their career, but this is still relatively rare.  

I think biology has something to do with it.  

On the other hand, when I confronted a devout christian female with the passages in the bible about not letting them speak in church, or covering up their body or stoning women who aren't virgins, she kind of agreed and just said that women are supposed to pure and obedient housewives.  So I also know religious indoctrination can push the issue to an entirely new level of a society being male dominated.  

To what extent is it biological and to what extent is it learned behavior then is my question.  

Between AD 61 and AD 63 Boadicea led her Iceni people to a glorious war against the Romans......


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