A continuation of Point A:
And pre-cursing concerns: Point B…
It’d be an understatement to describe my feelings regarding discrimination, injustice and inequality as something I dislike. But as things, they denote unambiguous concepts which I like. One of the greatest challenges someone like me faces in the world growing up, is deciding what things are and how we can define them in stasis, as a unit of information we can be certain of and depend on: something inflexible if you like—but because no unit of information is ever completely still when it’s used situationally, more and more definitions are required that are context dependant; and you can be rest assured that those contexts are never dependant on just the one unit of information.
It’s one of the reasons why autistics are described as natural outside-the-box thinkers. There is truth in this, but only in as far as we’re never actually in the box. The box is jam-packed with the wheres, whys and whatfors of any of a hundred variations of contextual, situational determinant based on previous outcomes and strategies: whether they worked or not, but also an unimaginable series of permutations of static definitions that are in constant flux.
When we get it wrong it can be hilariously inappropriate and embarrassing for all concerned, but not always entirely pleasant. But this is the reason some environments are so exhausting— while the processes I describe take little discernible time, they are constantly active: we receive the information, intellectualise the information, throw it away, add it to the box, or discard something that’s no longer required— it’s a form over-clocking which is difficult to maintain for very long without practice and even then, it’s not something I’d describe as best practise. Far from it.
The reason I mention it, is to offer a context; describe the box as it were, because how stuff sometimes comes out is a mystery— links, overlaps, patterns, systems and definitions frequently collide and contexts are sometimes erroneously cast-off. But sometimes it’s nice to just, not throw these things away because they serve no purpose— because whether we like it or not, we are in some way defining ourselves as much as we’re trying to make sense of the world by defining what’s in it. Sometimes however, some things just will not be put in a box. No matter how much we’d prefer it.
“No one would have believed in the last years of the nineteenth century that this world was being watched keenly and closely by intelligences greater than man’s and … as men busied themselves about their various concerns they were scrutinised and studied, perhaps almost as narrowly as a man with a microscope might scrutinise the transient creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water. With infinite complacency men went to and fro over this globe about their little affairs, serene in their assurance of their empire over matter. It is possible that the infusoria under the microscope do the same.”
Those of you who are familiar with that piece of text will know it be the work of H. G. Wells. It’s twenty words longer and less snappy than Jeff Wayne’s adaptation, but far fitter for the purpose of elaborating the work of John Gray Ph.D. I’m sure at the time of writing it, he considered women to be from Venus to be quite original, but I think the switch in celestial body was more a ploy to conceal his inspiration, just as Wells may have, regarding his epiphany about the Martians’ hostile take-over of the planet.
I certainly can’t see the problem with finding it analogous to certain gender-identity stereotypes, at least not with all these planets and primates whizzing around, and almost impossible not to with the application of the odd suppostion-paradigm to the text. I find it quite amusing how much Woman and aliens have in common in this respect— mass destruction and want to annihilate the species excepted.
But for starters, the period is a little off, so we’ll bring it forward a hundred years, at least in line with the post-internet shopping revolution, but for purely cosmetic reasons you understand: lipsticks and what have you. If I’m going to go-there, I want to get the scenery correct.
From there it’s easier to allude to the concept of being watched keenly and closely, for this is one of the more astute gifts Woman possesses: they will observe shoes, handbags and precious stones in great detail and all manner of things they rather like, whilst at the same time and without remorse find error in them; then tell each other about it. This is because Woman possess intelligences greater than man’s and were it not for other women, they might have nothing whatsoever to talk about.
That said however, I draw the line at making inferences suggesting Woman’s ability to reason is better than man’s, because I cannot and nor can anyone on Earth— which is quite fitting as I have imagery of Woman having man scrutinised and studied [like] creatures that swarm and multiply in a drop of water and finding error with them, just whizzing around. I think I’ll let the ‘drip’ similes speak for themselves, of which there are many, as it seems especially pertinent when comparing man to the contents of a Petri-dish— and by water, I do not mean Coco Channel.
Woman is not afflicted with infinite complacency either and though man may be serene in [his] assurance of their empire over matter, they are not when it comes to Woman: Woman is less straightforward than that. Matter has rules which govern it: Woman does not.
And so on and so forth…
Personally, I have always found this streamlining of humanity problematic; as much as I need definition to function properly, I resent pigeon-holing, and no doubt the invaders did too. I don’t even associate masculinity and femininity as too separate an entity, or even two too separate entities, considering instead gender-identity to be more in-keeping with sexuality; more along the lines of a spectrum— quite where I’d place Martians on the scale is by the by, but for all their questionable habits, I wouldn’t discount the possibility of the odd conscientious objector.
Whether it is intended or otherwise, discrimination will always occur with such binary systems, hence the medieval logic earlier: conflict cannot be avoided. It’s why I don’t think I’ve never met a feminist, despite meeting a lot of people who claim to be.
I find it’s as much a language issue than anything, because I’ve never heard the same definition twice and I’ve heard thousands— as such the term is completely without meaning to me; and I’ve always felt that tacking it on to what are sometimes supportable, passionate and well reasoned individual beliefs to be utterly devaluing to the person having them because of it.
Just because [some] feminists: “embody an ideology based on what is best about our species both emotionally and spiritually for the betterment and improvement of the world,” doesn’t make them separate beings.
That’s not equality— which is one of the things they seem to agree with: equality that is, but you’d be surprised by the number that don’t. With equality however, it’s far easier to ask: what is Woman, if not the heart of the world?
Woman was God’s second mistake…
Friedrich Wilhelm Nietzsche
25 thoughts on “What is Woman, if not the heart of the world?”
I have never been transfixed by jewelry. Some woman cackle like hens, and there I am outside with the boys by the fire. Yet I consider myself rather feminine. This post was a deep one, three read through’s!
I know what feminine is 😀
It’s funny, the whole point of letting my chips just associate freely without sticking to one thing left me a bit full of should I, shouldn’t I by the time I’d finished it – which is not the point at all – the fear is having a piece on context taken out of context… But it’s out of my hands now!
I hope some of it was interesting – it’s a pretty close snapshot of what can go wrong… but it was fun… I’ve just about got the next bit finished – been a day of interruptions!
Yay womens 😀
Sometimes writing has a way of doing it’s own thing.
I hate interruptions, very annoying. 🙂
Yay men I suppose. 🙂
lol I guess we’re worth a little yay from time to time!
It wasn’t the writing so much as how it might be read, there are crazy people on the internet!
But I’d like to think that it’s taken at face value – I did attack the absurd parts in the context of 14th reasoning and relationship self-help books, 18thC SF and a developmental processing ‘disorder’.
I can’t come up with a coherent response due to my fits of laughter! 🙂
Ah ha, I see how you operate now! 🙂
It’s a story of boxes: 1) Societally-created boxes; 2) gender identity boxes; and 3) various sub-boxes.
Boxes themselves are somewhat dichotomous, promoting discrimination. Being inside the box is good, except for those who prefer or must dwell outside. Boxes should be replaced with those fabric tunnels of childhood: the boundaries are flexible and, in two directions, non-existent.
One of the most refreshing aspects of out-of-the-box thinking is how it helps me, when I’m dwelling in the box, understand the boundaries of the box. It’s not a box until you know there’s something else outside of it.
There’s a lovely line in Jaws. Richard Dreyfuss remarks that an island is a funny place to live for someone who hates the water, to which Roy Scheider replies: it’s only an island if you look at from the water!
There are so many variations of males who look or act effeminate or women who look ‘butch’ which is not a particularly flattering description – so I cut out the need to describe anyone in this sense: rather than have specifics being modified all the time, it’s easier to just identify one point on a scale and move on – if I need too. We’re all a little bit of each other.
Good point. Boxes are borne of perspective, convenience, and sometimes need. Personally, I think linear spectra are suspect, too. We all fall in strange places in a billion-dimensional coordinate system and only by projecting to lower dimensions can we truly describe ourselves … rats, I went too geeky again!
Simple spectra for uncomparables are fine. If for example, you can be either one thing or another or a blend of the two. The tendency is to define which one and then add extra details to explain why it’s not – it’s not effective.
You are very much a geek!
Fascinating post. A lot to take in for a first time visitor.
Thank you for stopping by. I do my best to share something slightly different. It doesn’t always work out that way – sometimes it’s just rubbish – but occasional worth a giggle. I’m glad you found something to think about though 🙂
and i would like to know how this correlates with mitt romney who says he will have his own planet one day, being the dedicated mormon disciple and will deserve it after his demise? i’ll bet there are no women on mars in his universe.
Hahaha – oh come on! I’ve heard some whoppers in my time! But he goes outside in front of people, in public…
I can’t say I know too much about Mormons apart from the salamander letter, the Smith dude who found the golden whatsit in a field, Big Love was fun…
But this is just silly! Whatever happened to heaven? People want their own planet now? lol
not kidding, he is a nut on the highest order. and one prob is, if you are female you don’t get your own planet when you die, only the males. look up ‘the 19th wife’ or ‘under the banner of heaven’, both interesting reads in this area.
Oh my goodness! It does take all sorts I guess. They are a strange bunch for sure. I noticed Ron Howard is directing an adaptation of the second one – his creepy looking brother will no doubt play a creepy dude with a couple of wives 😀
This is a fascinating post. I love your writing style – it’s as if it doesn’t matter if we’re here or not. Like we get the opportunity to see you thinking out loud. Awesome. And yes, “Matter has rules which govern it: Woman does not.” Perfect : )
Hahaha, it’s so true! 😀 Thank you so much – it is very much the type of voice I go for – like a chat over the phone if you’d never seen a phone before! It means a lot that you like it 🙂
I’ve also occasionally mused on this thought: “Personally, I have always found this streamlining of humanity problematic.”
It seems that almost everybody resists being “labeled” as this or that or the other thing, relentlessly defending their uniqueness and individuality. Similarly, though, they find it easy to snap to judgment on any number of other “groups” they assemble simply because it allows rapid, fairly accurate digestion of one’s aspirations, opinions and background.
I think there’s a bit of “ancient brain” at work here. This skill, in early civilization, would allow us to make snap judgments on other tribes (say), or rapidly “estimate” or “count” a group of animals without a concrete concept of mathematics.
I will say this though: these snapshots of intuition, as reviled as they are, can have a surprisingly high accuracy in many social situations. As an INTJ personality type, I usually trust my early intuition-driven judgments until and unless concrete evidence changes my mind, and this has served me well.
Stereotypes have a raw deal, which is highly unfair – but the word itself has become such a negative thing. However, without ‘stereotypes’ the world wouldn’t function, people wouldn’t function effectively – it’s actually one of the areas of the aspie-brain that requires intellectualising and sorted through.
Whether we like it or not, we bring to social and cultural codes: learned and experiential, to every environment we face and use stereotypes to avoid wasting untold energies having to work out whether the wooden chair should be sat on or burned to make fire. They’re not bad things and I curse the people who started the whole stereotypes are bad nonsense.
We need to be able to make quick judgements – it’s not so straightforward for aspies, because the process is less intuitive… What drives me crazy, is that> I depend on being able to define things – make stereotypes, catalogue and then tweak as I go. The people that deride such things are actually more often than not, the ones who can do it without batting an eyelid – and don’t understand how difficult life can be without it…
I’ve put together a piece on the opinion process which covers some of this, but I still haven’t worked out how to present it…
People are odd! 😀