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Minouche

I am not saying that the "feminines" qualities are inferior to the "masculine" ones, but that the roles allocation of qualities would make it difficult for women to challenge the power structure, or even feel like doing so in many instances.

[quote]Sometimes they're positive qualities (valour, chivalry...) and sometimes they're not (brutality, insensitivity...)....[quote/]

I have met a few 'brutally insensitive' girls whether their physical appearance gave you a hint of what was inside or not.

[quote]The problem I see isn't that not everyone's the same, that men and women aren't the same (and I don't think they are)[quote/]

Actually what is found mannish in a culture is womanish in another .Our beer adds show men laughing loud, slapping each other on the shoulder. This surprised very much an African student I met as a junior. To him this is awfully girlish : among his people men are dicreet, they never laugh in public: they are more mature than "childish" females.

[quote] but that one cluster of traits is allegedly superior, or that it constitutes a behavioural obligation -- be like this, be like that. Be what you look like. Be a good little comic book character. [quote/]

right on: it's caricatural to demand from all males to be one definite way and all females the opposite/complementary way or to derive a value hierachy from the differences noted. I'm not sure, though, that heterosexuality is what forces this on us rather that the very long habit of a gender dependant power structure. I've met a cross dresser and no real female could have competed with him in how closely he fit the American female icon. If anything his apperance drove deeper in me the notion that the role isn't the person, no matter how hard we try to fit. I have found out that my acceptance of myself and of others has grown at the same time as I was looking into people for their qualities without superimposing my preconception of what they should be. Oh, I'm no saint and I catch myself sometimes with some evidences of prejudice that irk me, but I live better with myself when I don't put others or myself in pre-shaped boxes.