Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

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Ygern
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Re: Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

Post by Ygern » Thu Aug 27, 2009 12:38 pm

Oy vey, the pair of you. I'm going to start handing out bottles of baby oil so that these sorts of issues can be sorted out in a civilised way: jelly wrestling.
We could sell tickets and everything.

We will accept as a scientific given that men and women are biologically different.

The topic is about why women seem to form the backbone of so many religions even though most religions exclude them from taking a position of authority, and why so many otherwise enlightened / liberated women still cannot bring themselves to leave their religion.
The universe is huge and old, and rare things happen all the time ~ Lawrence Krauss
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Tulip1
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Re: Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

Post by Tulip1 » Thu Aug 27, 2009 6:37 pm

munsterdevil wrote:
what is PP? being dutch i dont know.
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Thanks.
Pope says atheists pick & choose their morals. Correct. Today I will be frowning on child abuse & not having a problem with homosexuality.
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Re: Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

Post by michealjackson » Fri Aug 28, 2009 7:40 am

Thanks for the feedback. That is very useful.
Cheers and we look forward to your Forum Favourites selections!
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pantsheadmagee
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Re: Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

Post by pantsheadmagee » Fri Aug 28, 2009 12:02 pm

Here's one level of it:
It's called patriarchal bargaining.

Let's say you're in a situation where you are a member of a disadvantaged group. Like women in patriarchal social structures (like the church. Or to a lesser extent, society as a whole). You are in a situation where in the current structure you are inevitably going to be disadvantaged- you're never going to be in charge. However, within that structure there is opportunity for advancement and for respect.

So what do you do? You have a choice.

You can decide "f*ck this, this is all ridiculous, I'm not going to go along with it". If you do that, sure, there's a chance that you might manage to topple the entire structure, but, really.. that ain't likely. Add to this the fact that there tend to be disproportionate punishments (sometimes legal, sometimes social, sometimes both) for people who step out of line. We're not just talking Magdalen laundries here, we're talking something as simple as social ostracism- I know women in their thirties and early forties, for example, who were ostracised from their families/communities for having kids out of wedlock and not being appropriately ashamed and giving the baby up. That's a pretty hefty stick to hit someone with. Particularly in terms of "morality" (and those are some pretty damn heavy quotation marks there), women were expected to uphold standards. Particularly in patriarchal structures, women are expected to do the vast majority of caring work- and we all know how highly the church values brainwashing them kids when they're young. The punishments for women stepping out of line in our society were (and in some areas still are) far, far higher than for men.

So like I said, if you're in that situation, you have a choice. If you go against the grain you're likely to face ostracism at the very best. But if you go along with it? Well, you'll never be in charge, but there's an opportunity there to command a position of respect. If you're 'respectable', if you tow the line. Your options may be limited, yes, but you'll retain the support of your community, and you sure won't be at the bottom of the social ladder.

So you make your bargain.


Of course, this isn't the kind of choice that everyone faces, by any means. I'd be willing to bet that many of the women who are here haven't had that kind of situation- I sure haven't, and neither have many of my friends. However, if you look at Irish society as a whole, there definitely are pockets where these kind of parochial, patriarchal attitudes remain. And if you're wondering why you see fewer openly atheist women than men about the place, then you can't just talk about the bits of Irish society where you yourself are. You have to take it as a whole.
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Re: Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

Post by pantsheadmagee » Fri Aug 28, 2009 12:08 pm

Also, that other thing I posted? Satire, people. Satire. The kind of satire that is also extremely pointy.


Let's spell some things out, shall we? Some people here (particularly that oh-so-charming Hobbes character) are under the impression that there are biological reasons why women are less rational, more emotional, and somehow 'naturally' more susceptible to religions than men. Strangely enough, these people also don't seem to have many/any female atheist friends.

Now, I was a woman the last time I checked. I also am sure that my critical thinking skills are, shall we say, above par. As a reasonable, rational person with a healthy sense of self-esteem, I am very able to choose who I am going to spend time with. Wasting my energy being around misogynists? Not my idea of fun.

I have this idea that maybe all the other sensible, rational, reasonable atheist women out there (of whom, by the way, I know many) also made the sensible, rational, reasonable decision to be friends with the people who didn't think that they were blithering, hysterical idiots just because they were born with uteri.
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Re: Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

Post by anadub25 » Fri Aug 28, 2009 2:01 pm

Aside from the obvious motive of self-preservation in cultures where women who identified themselves as atheists would be at risk, I think we can speculate about Irish women in modern Ireland. I believe Hitchens is onto something with his nod to psychoanalytic theory of feminine masochism.
I hope I wasnt being accused as an advocate of the 'we're all equal in every way' PC ideal!
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Dev
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Re: Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

Post by Dev » Fri Aug 28, 2009 5:17 pm

pantsheadmagee you haven't suggested anything as to why you think there are more male atheists. Lets hear it.
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Re: Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

Post by pantsheadmagee » Fri Aug 28, 2009 5:18 pm

anadub25 wrote:Aside from the obvious motive of self-preservation in cultures where women who identified themselves as atheists would be at risk, I think we can speculate about Irish women in modern Ireland. I believe Hitchens is onto something with his nod to psychoanalytic theory of feminine masochism.
I hope I wasnt being accused as an advocate of the 'we're all equal in every way' PC ideal!
If you're replying to my post- it was unclear- I was talking about modern Ireland.
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Re: Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

Post by smiffy » Fri Aug 28, 2009 5:50 pm

Dev wrote:pantsheadmagee you haven't suggested anything as to why you think there are more male atheists. Lets hear it.
I thought she did, by suggesting a possible reason for less female atheists (or openly atheist women).

On Ygern's point:
Ygern wrote:The topic is about why women seem to form the backbone of so many religions even though most religions exclude them from taking a position of authority, and why so many otherwise enlightened / liberated women still cannot bring themselves to leave their religion.
I don't think there's any one answer to this, and I don't think there can be any one answer. Different people will have different reasons for being religious and, indeed, will be religious in many different ways. You might start by asking why so many otherwise enlightened / liberated people are religious. Alternatively, perhaps it would be illuminating to ask whether the kinds of religious faith held by these 'enlightened/liberated' women differs from the kinds held by women who aren't 'enlightened' or liberated (whatever those terms mean in practice).

That said, I don't know what the answers are, because for many people religion is not simply a matter of subscribing to a set of particular ideas; not an intellectual exercise, in other words. Talking about religion - in that sense, and for those people - as being opposed to being enlightened or liberated is a mistake.

Quick final point:
anadub25 wrote:I believe Hitchens is onto something with his nod to psychoanalytic theory of feminine masochism.
Hitchens is a very fine writer in many ways, but I'd take anything he says about women with a large pinch of salt. He has a rather unpleasant misogynistic streak that occasionally comes through when writing about women.
Atheism is a religion the same way that NOT collecting stamps is a hobby - Scott Adams
anadub25
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Re: Sexist Question - De Wimmin and De Religion

Post by anadub25 » Fri Aug 28, 2009 7:19 pm

pantsheadmagee I wasnt!
smiffy Im aware of that but in terms of psychoanalysis there is contemporary work such as that of Jaques Lacan which supplies interesting theories which are not inherently patriarchal. Oftentimes Richard Dawkins expresses a kind of bewilderment at the persistance of faith despite advances in science and I think psychoanalysis is a useful framework for understanding such irrationality. (Not to mention Oscar Wilde ha)
"Religion is comparable to a childhood neurosis."

- Sigmund Freud -
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