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Patriarchy of Power and Survival

Patriarchy is simply father being the head of the family. Moreover, after the death father or in case with a single parent and in this case the mother, the son is regarded the head. According to leadership also the same thing is reflected. After the death of the king, the son is granted the authority to lead the community. It is also a state whereby women are oppressed by men as a way of tradition. Rules are made to govern the weaker sex (Lem, & Leach, 2002).

European colonialists brought to America social systems in which the male headed household was the fundamental unit, male household heads represented their families politically, and men exercised power over their families (especially their sons) through the promise of the inheritance of land and other real estate. Colonialists also adhered to the belief that these patriarchal social and political patterns were divinely instituted and necessary for a well ordered society. These assumptions informed such early visions of American society.

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"Sula was wrong. Hell ain't things lasting forever. Hell is change." Not only did men leave and children grow up and die, but even the misery didn't last. One day she wouldn't even have that. This very grief that had twisted her into a curve on the floor and flayed her would be gone. She would lose that too.

Why, even in hate here I am thinking of what Sula said."

Colonial societies in New England, and elsewhere sought to maintain a strict patriarchal order. The puritan leadership of the Massachusetts Bay colony perceived the gathering of both male and female religious dissenters at the house of Anne Hutchinson as a threat to their patriarchal power, and they expelled her and a group of her followers. Scholars have argued that the witchcraft accusations suggest an attempt to counteract challenges to pervasive patriarchal power. The status of black servants grounded slavery in a legally constructed system of race-based patriarchy. Colonialists in doth regions defined Native American societies as uncivilized because their gender relations did not conform to European patriarchal patterns

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The era of the American Revolution witnessed both an ideological challenge to patriarchy and its affirmation in the drafting of the constitution. Boycotts of English goods drew women into political activism and encouraged women to seek political equality with men in the emerging republic. Furthermore, the republican ideology that justified the resistance to England's king George III also called for a softening of patriarchal governance in families and households. Despite these challenges to patriarchal leadership, citizenship and political power in the new nation were confined to white male property owners, and national identity formed around a notion of white male patriarchy.

"It was a fine cry - loud and long - but it had no bottom and it had no top, just circles and circles of sorrow."

During the first six decades of the nineteenth centaury, economic development such as the market revolution and industrialization tended to undermine earlier forms of patriarchy and forced its re-grounding, particularly in the northern estates. The market and industrial revolutions forced a reconfiguration of male patriarchy by causing a decline in the significance of land ownership as a foundation of male economic and political power. Instead, male power became increasingly grounded in the forces of market exchange and men's ability to respond to them, and a new rationale for middle-class male authority promoted free competition, acquisitive individualism and the pursuit of economic self interest. A concomitant ideology of separate spheres defined men as alone suited to administer and participate in public political and economic life. Patriarchal power at least for the middle class depended increasingly on father's abilities as breadwinners and their capacity to provide education and guidance, especially to their sons. Linking manhood to income generating activities gave men a greater share of economic power than they had held in the traditional patriarchal household.

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According to Hurston, men are more practical than women; they know that their dreams are unattainable, as illustrated by the distant ships that rarely come onto shore. When they realize that their dreams are unrealistic, men become resigned to their fate and live on. On the other hand, women close that metaphorical distance by failing to distinguish between dream and reality. Their dreams are their reality and thus they live far more idealistic lives.

In addition, an emerging emphasis on the equality of white men and the practice of universal white male suffrage that became widespread in 1820's challenged earlier patriarchal notions that had assigned public political power to a propertied male elite, yet this emerging notion of equality, which did not include women or nonwhite men, perpetuated patriarchy by preserving the male monopolization of political power. Western expansion and frontier migration had ambivalent consequences for definitions of male patriarchy. On one hand, state and federal policy relied on notions of male patriarchy, with the white, male U.S. government serving as the paterfamilias, in defining Native Americans as child like warders of the government and relocating the further and further west.

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Senior women in management and the professions are caught in a dilemma: they are isolated from other women both because they are few in number and because most women do not achieve high levels of professional success. However, they have to fight harder than men to maintain and improve on their success because they have a limited support as under patriarchy.

Most women who are in senior roles reject feminist ideology, theory and practice. However, analysis of their positions within patriarchal organizations my only be accomplished within a feminist framework. Non-feminist perspectives make gender, and thus the experience of women as women, invisible.

At this point we have to draw a together feminism, subjectivity, biography and psychoanalysis to make sense of women's lives in a professional's context. In doing this, the aim is to develop a model, not only for survival, but for individual and organizational growth in connection with gender equality (Schottroff, Rumscheidt, & Rumscheidt, 2005).

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Black women, as far as Nanny can see, get the worst lot in life. While white men are highest in the hierarchy and look down on black men, the black men in turn drop the burden on the shoulders of their women. Everyone treats black women like animals.

According to the authors, Barriers, boundaries and emotion that they have focused in respect to psychological consequences of the complex gender differences in emotional connectedness between women and men (Kann, 2005). What strategies does each employ for survival? How do women in senior roles cope with their marginalization and isolation in organizational life?

The authors have placed a reiteration on the contrasting patterns of psychological development between women and men as careers develop and individuals confer a meaning of their lives through accounting for themselves biographically. It contrasts the coherence between male success and masculine identity with the divergence between feminine success and feminine identity. Women remain marginal to the grand narrative of career success and organizational power. While this is the result of patriarchal power relations, it ensures that women distance themselves from feminism and other women.

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They have also examined the ways of putting feminist psychology into practice. It is argued that the only way that individual women, and organizations themselves, will benefit is for friendship and cooperation between women to continue to develop as these enable connectedness and reflexivity.

Haven and Helen identified the rational and normative means by which men (particularly husbands) maintain their traditional authority over women (wives) and the necessary strategies they employ in attempting to ensure stability of their power. They argued that many wives believe their husbands have and ought to have more power than they do, and legitimization of this is traditional values leads to the hierarchical nature of the relationship between husband and wife as seeming natural and immutable. This position is echoed in studies of women and men in management and the professions, particularly some of the boss to secretary, student to lecturer relationships.

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The existence of a tradition whereby men hold professional power serves to legitimize it, and for many women this implies and becomes manifest in their deference to a senior manager or a professional who is also a man. Individual women who achieve power in their own right have challenged this, but their challenge does not deprive men of apparent legitimate authority in the eyes of other men and women (Nicolson, 2006). Many women even senior, and aspiring women, still exhibit non-assured, deferential qualities.

Indeed, it is alarming to observe how far professional women's accounts of their subjectivity in organizational life concur with this image. Haven argued out that some other reasons were given as to why we need to develop women's presence. These referred to particular characteristics which women needed or lacked, for example, assertiveness, aggression, self esteem, confidence and many others. For example, they said women are less aggressive, women lack self esteem. The major aim of this was to have a focus of the group was on woman as other to the characteristics of the male norm. This could be interpreted as pragmatic given that they worked in what is described as male dominated organizational cultures.

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Alternatively, it could be seen as a measure of the depth of the entrenched values within society than even this group of women concentrating their attention on the issue of women's development approached it from the perspective of the centered male.

So even senior and aspiring women recognize, in certain contexts at least, that they are outside the central arena for organizational action, either by virtue of deliberate exclusion or because they lack the necessary qualities. This reinforces the potential, at least, for women's deference (Ruchwarger, 2009). But is this still the case even for women who appear to have overcome the socialization process of the patriarchal organizational culture and achieve success?

Women display deference because of ongoing patterns of subordination of women/girls to men/boys, which part of a relationship pattern based on power dynamics in the family, socialization and cultural belief systems that are inescapable without taking on the mantle of outcast. It is not difficult to see or reflect upon the way that being seen and treated as subordinate and gaining recognition through deference may set up a template for social relations, both in the family and in the professional organizations. If women feel insecure about their talents and abilities because of their socialization and gender which is in this case the power relations inherent in the dominant culture, they will develop a range of coping/survival strategies to deal with this insecurity (Lerner, 2006). These involve them attempting to negotiate their subjectivity and interpersonal relationships as though they were other than women. However, despite the claims of many women interviewed in studies of managers and businesswomen, this position has social, and consequently psychological, difficulties.











A woman not connected to a man, presenting herself as independent, is treated with suspicion, whether that independence is at home or at work. It is evident that some women are connected to men who are their seniors in sexualized ways, whether emotionally, through sexual harassment, exploitation or even when they believe themselves to be exploiting their heterosexuality in an organizational context (Lem, & Leach, 2002)). The sexualized nature of the work relationship carries over from this heterosexual connectedness where women identity with their immediate bosses or senior men. However, this connectedness is often the means of acting out a deferential relationship because the man is the super ordinate one.

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