nhung's Paper

patriarchy and men's power

Patriarchy represent for a symbol of power that men have over women. Long time ago and even now, male have dominated not only women but also other living things. Important figures such as God and powerful leaders are often placed in the image of male. Because of patriarchy, the gap between genders differences have becomes extremely important to society. As the result, this leads to unfairness treatments of men toward women. Women have been struggled hard to compete with men in order gain some of the rights they have today. However, the idea of patriarchy is so strong that there are still some discrimination between men and women. Men’s power-hungry attitude had lead to the creation of patriarchy, and all the suffering that women experienced from it.
It was said that man was the first creation to the world and woman came in second. Because man was here first, he tends to gain every right that a woman could not has. As stated in the Christian’s Bible, God created a man in his own image. For that reason, people are assumed that men are God’s favorite children and women are just an additional creature who was born to serve men. Because of this unreasonable conceivable idea from society, men assumed that they are born to be in control. They abused the gift that God have given them and use it as an excuse to be in charge of women. Not only that, men want to show the world that they are the norm by authorize themselves as God and by lower down the image of women. For example, in Christianity, the female symbols are constructed by men in a ways that empower themselves (source1). This action showed that men have strong desired for power and control over women. Men afraid that by having a woman constructed their own image, it will make women become more powerful than them.
Until now, the answer of where patriarchy comes from is still questionable. According to Kittay, patriarchy means men are the norm and women are just other essential (kittay). Patriarchy exists because men want to be the primary human figure. On the other hand, a woman named Chodorow’s believes that patriarchy exist because of the unfairness treatment during nurturing from mother to child. In her theory, she stated that “the mother identifies with her girl child more than with her boy child. This exclusive female parenting produces gender identities and personality characteristics that predispose women to be nurturing and cuts off these dispositions in men” (young). Chodorow’s theory blames women for pursuing men to have the desire of becoming the dominant. There are no absolute evidences to confirm which one of these theories is right. However, Kittay’s theory sounds more reasonable because men have dominated women over all centuries.
Back then in a male dominance society, the images of women are only known as housewife, mother, or servant (source3). Being trapped into those three categories, women are not able to take control of their own life. It is described that before “the woman came to be regard as inferior, as weaker, mainly as support for or as adjunct to man, as sexual object, as tool of reproduction. Her body and her mind were reified, became objects” (source3). According to those statements, it seems like women lived only to serve men and they are not able to enjoy life as a normal human being.

In today society, especially in America, women was able to gain some right such as being able to vote, being able to pursue higher education and work in higher career fields. However because of patriarchy, the idea of men on top is still exist. Yet, women were able to vote, but still we do not see any female leader. This is not because women do not desire to become one; it is because society and men do not want them to become one. Besides, men do not want women to become leader because of they still desire to be in charge of women. Also, the idea of patriarchy is so powerful that it is hard for people to even imagine that there is a female leader. And because of that, women are not completely gain equal rights as men.
Overall, patriarchy represent for the image of male domination. Men represent for God, leader, earth, and power. Since men are born with such strong desire for power, they crave to be in charge of everything. Since men are fortunate to be the first gender’s creation on earth, they tend to have more authority than women. In order to show off their authority, they control women by treating them as a housewives, mother, or servant. Women on the other hand got blame for creating patriarchy even though they are the victim of this idea. Patriarchy has pushed women become a lower gender than men in every aspect of life. Women will gain their full rights only if patriarchy does not exist

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