How Victorians ruined male-female relationships.
Some time ago I watched a Utube video where a guy traveled all the way to Afghanistan to interview Taliban on their attitudes to women. A Taliban official told him without blushing that men and women were "absolutely equal" and women had all the rights that Sharia allowed. You should have read the comments:)
And yet, as I thought his words over, I realised there was a method to this madness. In his country, both men and women had their duties and rights, but they were different because they each occupy their own sphere. Hence, since each s8x had it's own responsibilities and its own rights, in his opinion, there was equality.
The main female responsibility in strictly Muslim countries is the preservation of their honour, aka chastity. That's why they often have the attitudes to things like rape which we as Westerners find totally barbaric, like at least partly, blaming the victim. And yet, even here there is a certain logic. Since the woman's honour is the most important thing then if she places herself in a situation where she could be robbed of it, like going out at night in an unsafe neighbourhood, or getting drunk at a party, she is then seen as partly responsible.
A funny thing is, that before late 19th century, the Christian West was not much different in this respect. A man's honour is courage, a woman's honour is chastity was more or less a universal principle. Men were supposed to prove themselves on the battlefield, while women were the gatekeepers of s8x and morals. No branch of Western Christianity seriously tried to restrict male s8xuality, they concentrated on women. Female adultery was always much more severely punished than the husband, say, visiting pr8stitutes.
This, btw, is perfectly in line with the Scriptures' definition of adultery, as I described in one of my previous posts. Honour killings were not unheard of (again referenced in the same post) and there are literary examples of women threatening suicide to avoid rape as death was shown better than dishonour (Rebecca in Ivanhoe, for instance). One of the books I read (written by a woman!) mentions that there is "a universal law of chastity for women"and that if they break it, they should better die.
This all changed with the onset of Evangelical Christianity in the USA which, probably under the influence of developing feminism, set out to control men and for the first time in history, to subject all of them, and not just those of religious orders, to this law of chastity.
It coincided with the developments in the Victorian society, with its poverty, overcrowding, br8thels at every corner of the street and the prevalence of various STD's.
They started with portraying of all women as victims. Women were on their own pure and chaste, they were Angels in the home and Virgin Mary combined, basically as8xual beings who tolerated beastly male passions for the sake of the joy of motherhood.
Never before in the history of the West were women seen as lacking in passions, rather vice versa, as old Church Fathers were warning men against them. They were all Eve, tempting men with the forbidden fruit. Married men were supposed to visit their wives quite often, and they all produced lots of kids, including aristocrats. Last autumn we visited a castle, and one of its owners a Marquis this and that in the 17th century produced with his wife 24 kids. 24!
Childbirth has always being dangerous, even nowadays, but it was only Victorian doctors who started forbidding women to have s8x with their own husbands. A decent man was supposed "to leave his wife alone" after the birth of a couple of kids (one if it were a boy) and many went to visit pr8stitutes as a result.
The next campaign was to rescue "the fallen women". Here Victorians did have a point, as many of these unfortunate creatures were sold into wh8re houses by their own parents at very young ages, such as 9 or 10. France, for instance, didn't even have an official age of consent until very recently. However, the truth also is, that many chose this path voluntarily as it was a much easier way to earn money then for instance, working at a factory.
Thusly, women were absolved of the only responsibility which had always laid squarely upon them, namely,
keeping their legs shut preserving their honour, while men were still expected to go fight (and were shot for cowardice as late as WWI) and yet also to be chaste and not ever to bother their own wives.
While the modern society is often extremely promiscuous, this late Victorian attitude lives on with 2 groups of people, American feminists and
Evangelicals churchians. They both absolve women of all the responsibility for their own actions, portray them as victims and tell men to leave their wives alone (all this scolding and preaching about men needing "to earn s8x" from their wives by doing household chores etc.)
Some Christians even use the Bible verse of women being the weaker vessel as proof that it's wrong for their husbands to expect s8x because he needs to "dwell with his wife with understanding". At least, Victorians did have a point since in their time there was no reliable contraception and medical care was inferior, but nowadays having regular s8x doesn't have to lead to having 20 children and all the dangers of this, so what harm can come from it for the wife's health?
I can only presume they still entertain this ridiculous late Victorian theory about women being pure beings soiled by the dirty male passions which is frankly, quite idiotic.
So do women have responsibility? I should say, that traditionally speaking, women had their own responsibilities which were different from those of men, and that we should probably return to this concept. You can't expect women responsibly perform the duties they were not made for, like fighting in a war, running a state or supporting a family. But they are perfectly capable of being chaste and hence should be held accountable for that.
What do you think?