Tuesday, May 29

On Marriage and Slavery



Wife and servant are the same,
But only differ in the name.
_ Lady Mary Chudleigh

It's true. And it is amazing that when it comes to this fact, wives of today are no different than those of the Middle Ages. By signing a marriage contract, a woman is signing her bond of slavery. Although the terms are not written, yet every woman knows them and works on fulfilling them. The title Mrs. Nobody doesn't come for free. A wife throws away her human rights at the doorstep of her husband's home. She then becomes a lifelong servant, offering her services for free. She will cook, clean, do the laundry, wash the dishes, make the bed, sweep the floor, prepare dinner for his guests, sews his buttons, iron his shirts, sends his suits to the dry clean, arranges his messy side of the closet, buys him underwear, … an endless list.
This does not imply that the husband has no role to play at home. Who eats what she cooks? Who leaves the dirty dishes on the table to fly to the kitchen sink? Who throws his dirty clothes all over the room? Who eats snacks in front of TV and leaves the bits for insects (he doesn't forget to feed them, poor creatures)? Who turns every place he uses for 5 minutes into a mess which needs a day to clean? Who stains the carpets? Who keeps demanding beverages while sitting on the couch? Come on.. he doesn't stop doing things all day. And wait.. it doesn't stop here. Of course we won't forget his favorite hobby.. criticism! "This meat is too hard, where did you get it from?" "The rice isn't well cooked!" "Where are my brown socks?" "Is the white shirt still in the laundry?" "What took you so long? I'm starving." "You've gained weight." "Why don't you take care of yourself as you used to before marriage?" Bla bla bla bla..

Doesn't matter what career a woman has. She can be a doctor, engineer, scientist, whatever.. but she has to be a good housekeeper before all that. Her career, no matter how prestigious, no matter how successful she is at it, will always be secondary.. not only to her husband, but to the patriarchal society he represents. If she is not a good servant, she is not a good wife. Her job is seen as leisure, a thing to pass the time when her husband is out at work, a bless she should thank her husband for approving of. Cause marriage also entitles the ownership of the wife by her master. He can give her the gift of having a job and he can take it away if he thinks that he's not getting the quality of service he desires. He therefore never encourages his wife to take her work seriously (if she happens to work). The rules for this leisure are set from the beginning: she can't stay late at work (preferably arrive home before him), she must take the kids to school in the morning (doesn't matter of she arroves late at work everyday), she isn't allowed to travel, she must return home full of energy to go on with her chores, she can't attend training in the afternoon, she can't take work with her to complete at home… etc. How can any person succeed with all those limitations?

There is no way better to end this post than this: "Marriage is a bribe to make a housekeeper think she's a householder." _ Thornton Wilder

16 comments:

The Alien said...

wemen agree on this, i do not know why but they do
it is simple, do not sign this kind of contract

i believe that a good couple can make a successful marriage away from all this

have fun

اجندا حمرا said...

Fantasia
another strong statement and post by you my dear
unfortunately no matter what we r goin to say..u will still be seeing lots of girls when they r being asked about their dream...they will answer to wear the white dress and meet my prince of charming
girls dont know what they will be goin through and sometimes even if they did ...traditions and families wont allow them to second guess the marriage
it will be much better to think of marriage as some form of an equal thing between the man and his wife but this unfortunately doesnt happen with egyptian guys
like u said they take the women as their wives by name only when infact they r servants for free...
maybe when the girl realizes the ugly truth ..this leads to divorce but also after carrying the ugly name of a divorcee and god people wont leave her also alone
people dont leave any woman alone whether she is single or married or divorced
always harrassing them ,always gossiping about them:(

Eyad Harfoush said...

Dear Fantasia,

Great work, and as well I agree to the bad parts of men behavior you spotted. Yet, you will find a man married to a lousy woman as housewife. Yet, he is happy, and she is as well, did not you think why? because she have got the secret balance that makes man careless about his stomach and clothes, and makes him stop criticizing.

Fantasia said...

alien:
Believe me I kept trying to figure out what you meant by your final "Have fun" yet I failed.
And you are saying the solution is easy "don't sign this contract"? I wish never to see another girl signing it, but would society respect their decision? It will keep them under pressure all the time. That's why the majority of girls get married, by the way.

Fantasia said...

Dear agenda,
I am always happy to read your response to a post. It is true that the pressure women are subjected to in our society is huge. They face pressure to get married and then the ugly pressure of divorce. But I believe it is women who should start to change this image about divorce. I think I will write a post about that soon. It is not fair to get in and get stuck, and when you finally get the courage to get out you are treated like shit, as if you committed a crime,
Girls who dream of prince charming are misleaded by all the stories of "and they lived happily ever after". They can't see the other side. Society has made a wedding day so appealing, the big celebration, the wedding dress, guests congratualting, the prestige of being married.. They are dazzled by all those childish things. They can't see that all this lasts for one day, they they will face a lifetime of suffering.

Fantasia said...

eyad:
I appreciate your objectivity in responding to my posts. But allow me to disagree here. The housewife you are talking about does not possess a secret balance or anything, her happiness is the happiness of the ignorant. You see this all the time around you. Like the majority of Egyptians who know nothing about politics or how other countries in the world have made an invention called democracy. They live in such peace of mind. You can't say they have got the secret formula of happiness.

Egypt Rose said...

Hi Lady,
did you ever have the chance to read "The Second Sex" of Simone de Beauvoir, if no please do, if you you will find all the answers, what is funny in this book it says exactly what you did, "I'm girl" a man never begins by presenting himself as an individual of a certain sex!!!!!

women has always been man's dependant , if not his slave; woman is the other.

Keep writing

اجندا حمرا said...

Dear Fantasia
i totally support u in writing a post about divorce
it isa very important issue
i wonder sometimes how can a man agree to stay with a womanwho dispises him,people always say he does this for the kids
in my opinion i think it is more healthy for childern to stay on good terms with both parents while the r divorced rather than seeing them fighting all the time
society always look at the woman who asks for divorce as if she committed a serious crime
they dont give excuses
woman r alway wrong
they dont say that about the husbands
women should always suffer in silence
they should bear everything always
not utter any word

Eyad Harfoush said...

Dear Fantasia,
Thanks for your reply, I meant, if the woman can be a mistress and mother the man shall be different. If the man can give her what I cal Tri-7 (in arabic) حب ، حنان ، حماية the woman will be very different. This is the balance

Eyad Harfoush said...

Dear Fantasia,
Thanks for your reply, I meant, if the woman can be a mistress and mother the man shall be different. If the man can give her what I cal Tri-7 (in arabic) حب ، حنان ، حماية the woman will be very different. This is the balance

Fantasia said...

egypt rose:
I read The Second Sex long time ago. It is a very good book, but a very old one too. I am more into contemporary feminist theory, that is post-modern even. I should say I am a girl to know where I stand. I won't decieve myself into thinking I'm a man's equal when in reality I'm much beneath him. I must say I am a girl to feel its pride and avoid negative feelings. I must define my sex cause it is part of my identity.
Men take things further than simply saying "I'm a man," they feel they are under continuous pressure to prove their masculinity. They keep screaming it into your face all the time with their arrogant attitude.

Fantasia said...

Dear agenda,
Your words encouraged me to tackle the subject of divorce in a future post. Divorced women fall under huge pressure, they pay the price of their freedom from marriage by getting imprisoned in society. They are the evil witches which everybody fears and avoids. Women should start changing minds about divorce, especially that the number of divorced women is rapidly increasing.

Fantasia said...

eyad:
Thanks for introducing the tri-7 theory, although I believe men have their own difinition of those words you mentioned: love for them means ownership, compassion means making love, and protection means money.

Egypt Rose said...

استفزتني كلمة "حماية" حماية من ايه .. التهديد الوحيد القادم هو من الرجل .. يعني يهددها بالحماية .. ولا يحميها من تهديده ..ولا ايه انا مش مستوعبة الموضوع .. التفكير بان المرأة ضعيفة وفي حاجة الى حماية تفكير مضى عليه 2322 سنة تماماً هي عمر نظرية ارسطو في الحتمية البيولوجية للمرأة .. يعني ان المرأة وجدت كما وجدت الارض الزراعية .. كائن موجود للولادة .. وعلى الطرف القوى و الانسان الكامل (الرجل) ان يهتم بها و يزرعها ويوفر لها الحماية

fantasia..
اذا كنتي فخورة بكونك امرأة .. انا أكثر نساء العالم افتخار بك و بنفسي و طبعاً لا عيب في التعريف .. بس الموضوع انني كنت احاول ان اكتب عن احوال المرأة المصرية وعن مدي تخلف الافكار الحيطة بها و ان اقتبس اراء ارسطو و سيمون وبعض المهتمين بالمرأةو ان اذكر التواريخ حتى نتمكن من معرفة الى اى مدي نحن متخلفين عن العالم .. وذكرت سيمون كلمة انها حين تعرف نفسها تقول "انا امرأة" في حين لا يذكر الذكر ذلك في تعريفه

Fantasia said...

egypt rose:
I too get provoked by the idea that men provide protection for women! We don't need bodyguards or the like. We live in apartments with locks now. There is police that can punish those who harm you. We don't need man's physical strength which is only useful in the jungle.
As for your thought about a woman refering to herself always by stating that she is a woman. I perfectly understood your point. I believe those classic resources are a very good start to build an awareness about gender issues and the history of feminist thought. I however belong to the more recent schools. But you are right, we should read about the origins of the problem and how the question of gender was tackled through history.

Miss Egyptiana "Trapped Soul" said...

eyad ... I have been triggered by two things u said ....

First is the secret balance :) .. a woman's secret balance is to be a mother and a mistress !!!!!! where is the partner in that… a woman to serve and bare children, and a hole to fill who can manipulate her man emotionally and physically … where is the respect in that … and where is the woman's mind in that?! A lousy housewife but can manipulate him well … where is the marriage as it should be in that… as women has to play tricks to be good and worthy

Second … the TRI 7 …
I agree with fantasia's definition of love, compassion and protection … this shows your sense of superiority that women need protection yet they were protecting loving and compassionating men from the very first moment of their creation …
As a mother, a sister, a wife, a daughter and a mistress…
Think and u will find that men has been taking and women were giving all the above. and even if a man think he is doing so … u will find that his woman is giving much more, or at least equal to what he is giving .. Where is the good in that!!

"When I dare to be powerful - to use my strength in the service of my vision, then it becomes less and less important whether I am afraid" - Audre Lorde