Sexual Depredation as a function of male society by men of a Certain Age
I would like to remind those folks younger than I that it was very few years ago when almost the entire planet Earth was run by and FOR the benefit of MEN.
Women have throughout history been the property of men.
Due to religious restrictions, teachings, and fundamentalist doctrines, women in the largest societies on Earth right now (Muslim, Chinese, N.Korean) have almost no human rights at all.
Next year, in June, women will, for the 1st time, be allowed in Arabia to drive---BUT--only if they are 30 years old or older, and for only a few hours per day!
The Old Testament laws (read through them sometime) are horrifying reflective of prejudice toward gender, bodily cleanliness, guilt-tripping, and anonymity. (What was Noah's wife's name? Lot's wife? Practically all the women we remember/who are named/ are "bad").
Eve, Delilah, Jezebel, Athaliah, etc.
In my childhood, wives knew nothing about how much money their husband earned, where he kept his insurance, or--often--who he banked with or what he invested in. Women stayed at home and worked as housekeepers, nanny's, cooks, errand runners, and concubines.
Law everywhere permitted husbands to beat their wives and it was deemed impossible (legally) to rape her.
The Atlantic magazine mentions:
"...those repressed and much pitied 1950s wives—their sexless college years! their boorish husbands, who couldn't locate the clitoris with a flashlight and a copy of Gray's Anatomy!—were apparently getting a lot more action than many of today's most liberated and sexually experienced married women. In the old days, of course, there was the wifely duty. A housewife understood that in addition to ironing her husband's shirts and cooking the Sunday roast, she was—with some regularity—going to have relations with the man of the house."
The fact that Western society has rid itself of many evils (slavery, smoking, racial epithets) is miraculous.
The eventual purge of sexism adjustment is not complete and WILL NOT BE until everybody my age and slightly younger, has DIED and those who reared their children in sexist latent prejudices and mindsets have died also.
Sexual domination and white male superiority is everywhere in old movies and especially comedies.
Why? IT WAS NORMAL!
I didn't realize this completely until I sat my kids down one night long ago.
I wanted them to see a movie I "remembered" as being hilarious: HOW TO MURDER YOUR WIFE with Jack Lemmon.
As we watched it, I was suddenly horrified.
The movie not only wasn't funny AT ALL, it was so blatantly misogynist and mean-spirited, my kids were disgusted with it---and by extension--ME.
I say all the above to point out to those who aren't aware, the way Harvey Weinstein operated is NOT unusual for a wealthy man in power. It is in churches, it is in politics, it is in corporations, and just about anyplace Men of a certain age have the inclination and opportunity to cash in.
The plot of the comedy is simple: A cartoonist gets drunk and married and immediately regrets the fact his bachelor days are over. He takes out his frustration by filling his cartoon panels with a plot to murder his wife by drugging her and dropping her body in the Pucketa pucketa machine. When his wife disappears, he is charged with murder. In the scene depicted below, he is defending himself in court by a very strange appeal to male attitudes toward women and marriage which are pretty cold-blooded by today's standards. Back then however, it was hilarious.
WATCH THIS CLIP
Sexual domination and white male superiority is everywhere in old movies - sexual domination and male superiority of men of colour is apparent in non-Western countries and BAME ghettoes TODAY, and thus should take priority.
the way Harvey Weinstein operated is NOT unusual for a wealthy man in power - indeed.
Wasn't Roman Polanski guilty of sexually abusing a thirteen year old girl?
Why do certain celebrities stay quiet over Polanski but speak out against Weinstein?
PS - I hope Weinstein faces criminal charges.
I would like to remind those folks younger than I that it was very few years ago when almost the entire planet Earth was run by and FOR MEN
Great thread Terry. No need to remind me, I'm a dyed in the wool feminist. Actually I've read very little feminist literature but I just knew growing up that men and women are equal, anything else struck me as ludicrous. Odd for a born-in JW isn't it?
I remember terrible sexism growing up, no equality in employment, women treated as sex objects. I have posted a thread about the driving ban being lifted for women in Saudi next year.
Excellent post Terry.
Can I expand the issue slightly by saying that men in power have also been pretty good at exploiting other men?
Weinstein's well-deserved fall from grace has brought to the surface how "normal" sexual exploitation has been in the film industry and I note that a few men have also come forward in recent days to talk about how they too were subjected to unwanted advances by rich and powerful men in order to get roles.
I acknowledge the dynamics may be different as well as the consequences for men who are exploited - but sexual exploitation is an entrenched problem that I would hope is a long last being taken seriously by the industry.
I am with you there about the discrimination in employment and women being treated as sex objects. Nothing more revolting than being approached by unattractive men I didn't want.
This latest Hollywood scandal has just highlighted how all-pervasive this problem is. Will anything really change?
I think things have changed and I hope it will continue Longhairgal. Have you seen the film Suffragette? The credits at the end list the dates women were given the vote in each country and it made me feel proud of the women who led the way in the nineteenth century amidst imprissonment, torture, being shunned by society and having their children taken away from them.
I agree we've still got a long way to go and the glass ceiling remains in many industries. I can only cope by looking back and seeing how far we've come, it's too depressing otherwise.
Those who are most "surprised" by Weinstein are probably the least informed, i.e. "young".
I'm so old (70) I remember the water fountains marked "WHITE" and "COLORED".
I remember "people of color" riding only on the back of the bus.
I remember when the only people hanged (i.e. lynched) for rape were black.
Until the late 1950's the word "rape" was never spoken aloud. It was actually whispered. But then, so was the word "pregnant"!
Society was filled with cigarette smoke on buses, airplanes, in restaurants (while you were eating somebody with a cigar could light up next to you) in elevators, in grocery stores, etc.
Litter was everywhere you looked.
People BURNED their garbage in their backyard!
Oh, I could go on and on about the positive changes in society during my lifetime.
It isn't too surprising the sexual changes necessary (power/sex/harassment) is the last bastion to erode.
When we look at the amount of time it took from the freeing of slaves until Civil Rights Act legislation, we shouldn't be too surprised if sexual harassment takes another century of unmasking and prosecution to make much progress.
In fact, I won't actually BELIEVE anything is changing unless Weinstein does time in jail.
True those old movies are a shocker but white male domination in movies?
I imagine in black, brown and Asian countires there is black, brown and Asian male domination not just in movies but in everyday life far worse than what we have ever seen in white western movies. Muslim women in western countries still experience this it's just that it's under the radar.
This doesn't excuse any colour of brutish behavior cause human rights are too important and must be passed on to the next gen.
Thanks for the reminder Terry.
This is what you get from Christi-SCAM-ity. It started with the inquisition, and comes directly from the LIE-ble. Both testaments are guilty--judaism is also responsible for the world being geared to enslave half the population (and, ultimately, the whole population). Islam is no better--as practiced today, it is as bad as Christi-SCAM-ity during the height of its power during the dark ages.
Nothing more revolting than being approached by unattractive men I didn't want.
Would it have been acceptable if they were attractive?