Last Updated 25 Mar 2020

Patriarchy and the System

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Patriarchy is a society system that large than oneself, which means not just about a person’s idea or one’s life. It is something larger than that. It tends to be organized around specific kinds of social idea and relationship. And restrictions on the establishment of regular, while the social relations of what is supposed to happen a common understanding of what is allowed and what is the expected behavior of individuals within the system. Race, sex, race, age, class, which was seen as patriarchy is based on the understanding of individualism, which need to increase and modify the action of a major type of personal social characteristics.

As stated in Allen G. Johnson’s, Patriarchy, the System, “To live in a patriarchy culture is to learn what is expected of men and women—to learn the rules that regulate punishment and reward based on how individuals behave and appear. ” (p. 74) As we can see, people are generally regulated by a unvisual concept which is patriarchy. This system is subject to personal choice, and only allow each person to choose to participate or in the expected behavior, relationships, and with understanding.

These unwritten content has been produced and training with the patriarchal system to shape and guide the acceptance of actions, behaviors and individual experiences. Within the private and public relationship in the structure of patriarchy, patriarchy does use different strategies to maintain gender inequality and these strategies have achieved the status of women's subordination. Household strategy is considered to be the strategy of exclusionary and inequality. As Kirk and Okazawa-Rey wrote in their article “Making a Home, Making a Living”, “The father is the provider while the wife/mother spends her days running the home.

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This family if regularly portrayed in ads for food, cars, cleaning products, or life insurance, which rely on our recognizing—if not identifying with this symbol of togetherness and care. ”(p. 303) This is an example of exclusionary strategy in the private area which is based on household production. The most common situation that women will face can be sexual harassment, age discrimination and against women with disabilities. What is more, women have to balance home and work flextime, such as part-time job, home and mommy track.

Also they have to take care of children when they have families. It is unfair to not be able to do both, which stand for successful career and house wife, they have to make decision. Being underestimate the value of women and regulated with patriarchy privilege and oppression, people always expect women to take care of families but to work like a man. The household has a different structure to other institutional form. For example, the workplace. According to Joni Seager, “women are both “segregated” and “concentrated” in the workforce.

They are employed in different occupations from men, and are over-represented in a limited number of occupations. ” (p. 64) Under the construction of patriarchy, there are “women’s jobs” and “men’s jobs”, although the definition of these has changed over time, there still lot of limit for women to work. Usually, women just take a small rang of jobs, their jobs are lack of varieties and are used as low-wage service and industrial labors. Public institution can not oppress or exclude women directly from public structure, this situation force women go back to home and do what people expect them to do.

Moreover, the system also regulates the students in universities. In the video “Playing in the closet: Homophobia in Sports”, the basketball team in Pennsylvania State University exerted pressure on their female basketball players of not to be a lesbian. This is another kind of patriarchy privilege and oppression. What happened in this team was that the coach, who is called Rane Portland, told her players that being a lesbian was forbidden in this team and dislodged some players who were considered to be the lesbian from their basketball team.

Under the oppression, female players in this team not only failed their academic and basketball career, but also were traumatized in their bodies and soul. They were asked to fellow the standardization of behavior and were misled to a wrong way of gender differences. This is the way in which public institutions and individuals use their power to reveal how related the structures of patriarchy are. Gender inequality is an outcome of Patriarchy. Radical feminists defined as the patriarchal social system in which all social roles for women are in a subordinate position. Community is divided, being ruled.

From this perspective, men are the main class, women are the ruling class. As Johnson Points out in his article, “because of patriarchy is, by definition, a system of inequality organized around gender categories, we can no more avoid being involved in it than we can avoid being female and male. ”(p. 76) Patriarchal attitudes come into being in the family through the socialization process. The family, as a social institution, is a producing area for patriarchal practices by socializing the young people to recognize gender differentiated roles, so ideological factors is the roots of patriarchy.

Men in society have a dominant temperament. With the development of socialization, this provides a higher social status of men which in turn led them to fill a social role in which they can exercise mastery over women. Patriarchy probably has the biggest part of gender inequality, it is continuance in this century is result from the reluctance of society to adapt to gender equality. People are fighting against the inequality in the system of privilege and oppression. As stated in Allen G. Johnson’s, Patriarchy, the System, “We need to see new ways to participate by forging alternative paths of least resistance, for the system doesn’t simply “run us” like hapless puppets. It may be larger than us, it may not be us, but it doesn’t exist except through us. Without us, patriarchy doesn‘t happen. And that’s where we have power to do something about it and about ourselves in it. ” People created human society and developed it, at the same time people establish a system to control peopel’ s activities and build their though.

That means people can change the situation they are in and make it better. According to Seager, J. “The Penguin Atlas of Women in the World, Sports”,. the author listed the examples that “the French Open equalized payments to women and men tennis singles champions in 2006, the US Open stared offering equal prize money to women and men in 1968” As we can see, people, especially the female athletes, are challenging the rules that have been established to regulate them.

While the female athletes acknowledging the existence of limitations and restrictions, each person has come up with their own efforts, in behavior, to change and improve the reality. Follow the crowd to the path was usually acceptable in the past, but now they choose taking the path of least resistance although it is hard. Independent action or behavior, our personal choice is to create an acceptable and positive against the oppression of patriarchy in our society the only way to change.

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Patriarchy and the System. (2017, May 09). Retrieved from

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