Chapter 4: The Gender Con

More than a Woman

…Under Protestantism the extended family tradition of the Catholic Church was reduced to smaller self contained families. Protestant woman no longer had the support of the spurious practices of confessions, novenas, miraculous shrines or the doctrines of purgatory which had given her a strong sense of community and hope. Alone, and tied to the Protestant home and family before God, woman lost the ideal of individuality and dignity that Christianity had once offered her. Men were in firm control and patriarchy ruled.

The onset of the Victorian era helped reinforce further support for this status quo. But it also gave rise to feminism amongst women who were prepared to defy the rules of this religious patriarchy. This in turn led to increasing tensions amongst men who were now being challenged into thinking about identities that their religion had so clearly mapped out for them. The result was an increase in antagonism towards women and resentment of women’s search for freedom. The backlash that followed sought to reaffirm male superiority over women. It idealised the role of man as the dominant masculine figure. It was a position that would be achieved through force and, in spite of the conservatism of this period, through physical violence, sexual violence, through any means necessary…

<<< PREVIOUS                                                                                                         NEXT >>>