We explain what patriarchy is and some examples of this term. Also, its similarities to the matriarchy.

The domination of men over women can be seen in all areas.

What is patriarchy?

Patriarchy It is a Greek term and means, etymologically, "parental government." At present this concept is used to refer to those societies in which men have the can about women.

In societies classified as patriarchal, this type of domination of men over women is observed in all institutions and not only in one aspect of society, which makes this predominance continue to reproduce even unconsciously.

Patriarchy can manifest itself from the family and the domestic sphere, even when it comes to seeing who occupies the positions of power in the Condition –And how they exercise that power–, going through the work and academic sphere, to name a few cases. Religious institutions are also not exempt from this type of supremacy of men over that of women.

Patriarchal societies are governed by the stereotypes of genre. According to specialists, it is not an organization that has existed "forever." For example, Gerda Lerner places the emergence of patriarchy between 3100 and 600 BC, in the area of ​​the ancient Near East, where the family was the basic unit from which rules and regulations were issued. rules. According to this author, the beginnings of this type of organizations have to do with the war, sex and reproduction.

Examples of patriarchy

Economic dependency can occur when the woman's salary is lower.

Currently there are various ways in which patriarchy manifests itself or, at least, its aftertastes. Here are some examples:

  • Economic dependence. This happens when women have access to more precarious or lower paid jobs than those to which men have access. It also occurs when the salary of a woman is lower than that of a man who occupies the same position or, even, when the woman is assigned the role of housewife, in charge of taking care of the children and, therefore, cannot dedicate herself to work and have their own salary or entry. All this means that women are not in the same conditions as men and that they depend on them for their subsistence.
  • Victim of violence. It is very common to see how in some societies women are victims of certain types of violence specific, such as sexual harassment. Domestic violence and rapes are part of this type of aggression that is often naturalized, legitimized or made invisible. In many cases there are not even legal figures to make a complaint.
  • Professional growth. The concept of "glass ceiling" is used to speak of the limitation or "ceiling" that women find within their professional career. Few women truly gain access to decision-making positions within companies, either due to a cultural issue of the company. business (which gives greater prominence to the man), because the woman herself censors herself (for fear of not complying with the abilities Y knowledge necessary) or even because he chooses his family life. In general, the most important and highest positions within the hierarchy of any company are in the hands of men. Added to this is the fact that women are often limited to accessing certain types of industries, such as services or textiles or certain positions such as teacher, secretary or nurse, which, in general, are poorly paid.
  • Unsecured sexual rights. Many times women do not have the same right as men in relation to the control of their sexuality. This involves both taking care of the Health sexual and reproductive rights such as the right to decide freely and responsibly about their own body and about whether or not they want to have children and, if they want to have them, to be able to decide how many (control of birth rate).
  • Job prospects. Usually you have the idea or belief that men are more dedicated to work than to family and that women, conversely, prioritize the family. That is why it is very common that, when hiring someone, the employer turns to a man.

Patriarchy and matriarchy

It is said that the origin of matriarchal societies have to do with motherhood.

Matriarchy is not the antonym of patriarchy, but rather this term refers to societies in which women occupy spaces of leadership in the different institutions of which they are part, in addition to having authority and being respected.

Although specialists have not been able to agree to identify the origin of this type of society, there are those who intuit that they are prior to patriarchal societies and their origins have to do with motherhood.

Some characteristics of matriarchal societies are the following:

  • Management. The woman is the one in charge of all the administrative tasks, from the administration of the food even that of money, work and physical spaces.
  • Central figure. Within the family, women are the main figure but they do not impose themselves over men (neither in the family nor in any other institution).
  • Sustainable economy. They are usually agricultural communities, where the economy subsistence.
  • Networks. Women are part of mutual aid networks in search of a community that works better.
  • Links. Women can have more than one partner.
  • I respect. The female figure is respected and even venerated for a simple reason: she is the one who can give birth.
  • Inheritance. The assets that are inherited from one generation to the next remain in the hands of women, who are in charge of taking care of them.
  • Accordance. Men are not dissatisfied with being part of this type of society.
  • Legitimacy. There is no coercion, but the recognition of who has power.
  • Value scale. In these societies, the sense of "having" does not rule, but rather the sense of "being." Values ​​are organized around the figure of a good mother.
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