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My wife often goads me by saying we live in a patriarchal society. I pointed out the flaw in her thinking, by letting her know that if that were true then she would be able to find a baby outfit which says "I love Daddy" on it. We have several which say "I love Mommy," but she has yet to find one that shows love for the pater familias. The closest she could find, was one that says "Daddy's Team." I guess I am relegated to being my child's coach.

I have always maintained, and always will, that men and women are different. They think differently and they act differently, and there is nothing wrong with that. Let's acknowledge it and move on.

I am glad to see my view point has been given credence by at least one academic.


( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Aug. 26th, 2007 03:58 am (UTC)
Actually, I agree on the average. The two things that society has to watch out for are (A) not automatically devaluing the things that women statistically/traditionally do better than men, and (B) not overlooking the statistical outliers. It's a disservice to children of both sexes to tell them what their talents are supposed to be rather than observing what they actually are. (Fortunately I was several years ahead of my age group in mathematics before anybody thought to tell me I wasn't supposed to be good at them.)
Aug. 26th, 2007 04:49 pm (UTC)
I would change (A) to read, "not automatically devaluing the things that one gender statistically/traditionally does better than the other gender."

That devaluation cuts both ways.

One of the few other academically based writings I have seen on this is the book "War Against Boys". It has some eye opening sections on the male bashing that goes on in society. The most egregious being the false statistic that 4 million women die a year from domestic violence in the US. In 2004 only 2.4 million people died in the US. Obviously the numbers don't add up.
Aug. 26th, 2007 04:52 pm (UTC)
Oh, and I agree that we should not be telling kids what they are good at. Let them figure it out on their own, and present the material as equally as possible.
Aug. 26th, 2007 08:33 pm (UTC)
Sounds like you'll be a great Dad!
Aug. 30th, 2007 02:40 am (UTC)
Aug. 26th, 2007 08:32 pm (UTC)
Fair enough, though I'm curious -- what would you consider a traditionally male talent that is chronically devalued by our society?

I wonder if you, as a particularly large, strong male, have had to deal with more than your share of annoying male-bashing -- just as I, as a tall, deep-voiced female, have had to deal with *less* than my share of patronizing behavior? In any case, your point is well taken. Our society is unjust to both sexes, which is in no way the same thing as being just.

BTW, does your book also point out that men can also be the victims of domestic abuse, and that they have a much harder time than women finding support and assistance when it happens? (We have made a little progress on this point -- at least the comics no longer make jokes about women beating up men with rolling pins, etc.)
Aug. 30th, 2007 02:40 am (UTC)
Hmm. I will have to think about it. I don't have any concrete examples, just a gut feeling, which means I need to examine the issue more closely.

I could flippantly say critical thinking, but I think that is a cross gender issue we are facing.

The book, as far as I can recall, did not mention domestic abuse against men. I lent it out to a friend, and I need to get it back.

Aug. 30th, 2007 04:36 am (UTC)
Yeah, flippancy is risky. I might be tempted to respond that critical thinking is regarded as a male province mainly by males who aren't very good at it. ;-) Seriously, though, I think it is much more a function of intelligence and education than of gender.

I agree that it is horribly undervalued these days, however.
( 8 comments — Leave a comment )

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