I’m in a good place as I start Darwin’s Flaw 2.0: The Solution’s Book as I begin to flesh out the various chapters. One of those chapters will be how to deal with the various religions as an impediment to female progress as a species – (I have not decided if I want to include ALL major religions, or just focus on one) – and their relationship with the treatment of women in general. When I began my research, I came across this entry in Karen Toriesen’s Book, When Women Were Priests – and then a lightbulb lit up in some dark, dusty part of my brain where I thought I covered this subject before.
The part of my brain cell cluster that lit up was revolving around a quote that I used in Darwin’s Flaw 1 on page 80 quoting from Anthony Fletcher’s 1995 book, Gender, Sex, and Subordination in England, 1500 – 1800.
“Women, by contrast, gained honor by hoarding their sexual purity. While honor, that is, competition for precedence, was an appropriate expression of male nature, shame, that is, discretion and timidity, were the appropriate and natural expression of female nature. Political authority and public life were associated with men’s exercise of sexual freedom; female dependence and vulnerability implied that her sexuality had to be protected and guarded. Thus the restriction of woman’s space to the household was a mechanism for protecting her sexuality and preserving her shame. It is interesting to note that the social function of the female virtues of chastity, silence, and obedience conflicted with the authority implied by women’s economic and managerial functions with the household.” P. 117, Toriesen, Karen Jo, When Women Were Priests: Women’s Leadership in the Early Church and the Scandal of Their Subordination in the Rise of Christianity, Harper San Francisco, 1993).
“Men’s control of women’s speech…was at the heart of the early modern gender system…Speech represents personal agency. The woman who speaks neither in reply to a man nor in submissive request acts as an independent being who may well, it is assumed, end up with another man other than her husband in her bed. Thus every incident of verbal assertiveness could awake the spectre of adultery and the dissolution of patriarchal order…Chaste, silent and obedient: the trilogy of primary female virtues carries with it a series of logical connections” (Fletcher, Anthony, Gender, Sex & Subordination in England: 1500 – 1800, pg. 12, 1995, Yale University Press).
The underlines are mine. Pretty similar, huh? Well, guess what? They are 1,300 years apart!
What does this teach us?
Sorry, that I can’t add more, but I have to return to my research. Have a good day.