An Armenian Journalist's Notes

This is a man’s world… but woman… About “repression” in other words :)))


Another reading, this time sharing with you a piece from Kathleen Gough’s “The Origin of the Family”. It was written in early 1970s, so keep calm and read it as historical something 😉

Characteristics of male power include the power of men:

1. to deny women [our own] sexuality

[by means of clitoridectomy and infibulation; chastity belts; punishment, including death, for female adultery; punishment, including death, for lesbian sexuality; psychoanalytic denial of the clitoris; strictures against masturbation; denial of material and postmenopausal sensuality; unnecessary hysterectomy; pseudolesbian images in media and literature; closing of archives and destruction of documents relating to lesbian existence];

2. or to force it [male sexuality] upon them

by means of rape (including marital rape) and wife beating; father-daughter, brother-sister incest; the socialization of women to feel that male sexual “drive” amounts to a right,  idealization of heterosexual romance in art, literature, media, advertising, and so forth; child marriage; arranged marriage; prostitution; the harem; psychoanalytic doctrines of frigidity and vaginal orgasm; pornographic depictions of women responding pleasurably to sexual violence and humiliation (a subliminal message being that sadistic heterosexuality is more “normal” than sensuality between women)];

3. to command or exploit their labor to control their produce

[by means of the institutions of marriage and motherhood as unpaid production; the horizontal segregation of women in paid employment; the decoy of the upwardly mobile token woman; male control of abortion, contraception, and childbirth; enforced sterilization; pimping, female infanticide, which robs mothers of daughters and contributes to generalized devaluation of women];

4. to control or rob them of their children

[by means of father-right and “legal kidnapping”; enforced sterilization; systematized infanticide; seizure of children from lesbian mothers by the courts, the malpractice of male obstetrics; use of the mother as “token torturer”  in genital mutilation or in binding the daughter’s feet (or mind) to fit her for marriage];

5. to confine them physically and prevent their movement

[by means of rape as terrorism, keeping women off the streets; purdah, foot-binding; atrophying of women’s athletic capabilities; haute couture, “feminine” dress codes; the veil; sexual harassment on the streets, horizontal segregation of women in employment; prescriptions for “full-time” mothering; enforced economic dependence of wives];

6. to use them as objects in male transactions

[use of women as “gifts,” bride-price; pimping; arranged marriage; use of women as entertainers to facilitate male deals, for example, wife-hostess, cocktail waitress required to dress for male sexual titillation, call girls, “bunnies,” geisha, kisaeng prostitutes, secretaries];

7. to cramp their creativeness

[witch persecutions as campaigns against midwives and female healers and as pogrom against independent, “unassimilated” women; definition of male pursuits as more valuable than female within any culture, so that cultural values become embodiment of male subjectivity, restriction of female self-fulfillment to marriage and motherhood, sexual exploitation of women by male artists and teachers; the social and economic disruption of women’s creative aspirations;  erasure of female tradition]; and

8. to withhold from them large areas of the society’s knowledge and cultural attainments

[by means of noneducation of females (60 percent of the world’s illiterates are women~; the “Great Silence” regarding women and particularly lesbian existence in history and culture;  sex-role stereotyping that deflects women from science, technology, and other “masculine” pursuits; male social/professional bonding that excludes women; discrimination against women in the professions]

Source of the photo