Saturday, March 22, 2014

In Defense of Chivalry

I found a new blog. To quote:
Chivalry took a beating (and to many people became "dead") in the late 1960s and early 1970s when it got hijacked by a warning message that the underpinnings were that women were somehow an inferior gender and that chivalry was about men displaying their dominance.  Some of that came from a need to ensure a bit more of a radical message so that it would attract attention and invite controversy as the women's movement was justifiably looking to make strides.

Yet it also came at a time when the movement for equality became conflated with a need for sameness, as if men and women had to be exactly the same if they were to be equal.  In more recent times, we've thankfully moved past such a rigid approach that equality has be mean sameness.  It's not unusual for women to speak of unique ways to sell to women as opposed to selling to men, recognizing that we do indeed think differently.  It's common in women's groups to hear discussions of the difference in communication styles and bonding between women as opposed to that of men.  It's known that chemical reactions to stress or hunger differ in how they impact each gender, so our needs and responses differ.  There are different roles, and accepting that does not mean that either gender is superior, or that it somehow implies there shouldn't be equal opportunity for both men and women to achieve their potential.  Of course there should.

But given all that, it also is striking how many women express the yearning to see chivalry displayed.  To accept that men and women have some places where our roles aren't somehow unisex.  That doesn't mean every last woman feels this way, and some continue to look at it with the meaning of subservience that took hold during the tumultuous 60s-70s.  And some men are there who still express resentment about women still looking for it as if the achievement of some strides in the 60s, 70s and the years since meant that women had forfeited their "right" to receive such treatment.
(Read more.)

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