Tag Archives: patriarchal wisdom

Power (Over) Corrupts

Power CorruptsThe pedophile priest scandal in the Catholic Church over the past 25 years is just one more example of the societal axiom that “power corrupts”. The phrase is actually a bit too simplistic, not all forms of power necessarily corrupt. I would say more specifically that power exercised from the top down (what some delineate as “power-over”) inevitably leads to some form of corruption if the people subjected to this form of leadership are not involved in the governance process and/or do not have comparable power of their own to check the actions of their leaders. This was a key factor motivating the American Revolution (e.g. “taxation without representation”), the French Revolution and many other similar insurrections… part of a larger trend in the world to move from authoritarian toward more egalitarian models of governance. This other idea of power flowing from empowered consent of the group is what is delineated as “power-with”. Continue reading →

Patriarchy Does Not Do Men any Favors

Robin Edgar, responded to my previous “Cadillac & Power-Over Sexuality” post with a heads up on another ad from the Super Bowl that illustrates the whole “power-over” thing to a tee. I found the ad on YouTube…

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Truly worthy of a Ms Magazine “no comment” this is illustrative of the subtle perpetuation of patriarchal principles through, in this case, (attempts at) humor. Did you ever have someone say something nasty to you, and when you call them on it, they say, “I’m only kidding”. Maybe so… but it’s a time-honored tactic to deliver a message without taking responsibility for it. And everyone knows that feminists have no sense of humor right? Continue reading →