The Battle of Sexes
All this pitting of sex against sex, of quality against quality; all this claiming of superiority and imputing of inferiority belong to the private-school stage of human existence where there are sides, and it is necessary for one side to beat another side. ~Virginia Woolf, A Room of One's Own, 1929.
The rivalry between women and men seems to be eternal. We might tend to imagine for a moment that one of these days a winner will be declared, and the discussion will be finally over. But of course we know that each generation will take this discussion to a new level.
From the very beginning, the Bible says, God's work of creation involved making "distinctions" out of the original chaos, creating day and night, sea and dry land, fish and birds, male and female.
With the sin of Adam and Eve, however, power and manipulation entered into the world, disrupting their relationship with God and with each other.
It’s fun to talk about the intriguing differences between the sexes, but there is a level at which this becomes ominous and devastating. When there is a striving for domination or control, there is a bitter enmity even under a friendly veneer.
Since the primeval times until recently the roles of men and women in society were strictly regulated. Church, school, family, and mass media did their best to convince women that their role was to become hearth-keepers, while men were breadwinners. Women did the vast majority of society's child rearing because few other options were available to them, while men domineered in fields like politics, engineering, medicine, and architecture.
Since 1970 the feminist revolution nearly prohibited talk of inborn difference and proclaimed men and women equal in their rights. Women finally secured the right to be independent. Today, there are women among astronauts, lawyers, doctors, and prime ministers. They often work longer hours then men to prove they are more professional, they make more and at some point they ask themselves, “Do we need men at all?”
Men strike back. “Promise Keepers”, a Christ-centered ministry for men has been running conferences and seminars since 1990. This organization is helping men cope with confusion and disorientation in today’s society. It turned out that men also have a right to a nervous breakdown. Not just women.
Feminists assert that men are still domineering in the American society. It might be true, but have you estimated the price men are paying for this domination? In 1920 women lived one year longer than men, while now a life expectancy for an average American woman is 7 years longer than that of an average man. The suicide rate among 20-24 year old men is 6 times higher than that for young women of the same age group.
Men are going through a serious crisis. One of the reasons is that over a short period of time, in the course of life of one or two generations, the roles of men and women have dramatically changed. Having a mobilizing effect on women, this process confused most men. Women got what they wanted. They were looking forward to taking up men’s roles, to become doctors, lawyers, pilots, to manage family budget, to play soccer, to have access to politics… They acquired confidence and a higher status in the society. Men, however, were never dreaming of replacing women, of becoming secretaries or housewives. They were used to take certain traditional privileges for granted and no wonder they were disappointed.
Again, men and women found themselves on different sides of the barricades...
Will peace treaty ever be signed?