Response to Brianna’s blog

October 20, 2007

I’m not quite sure what I think about Brianna’s description of the reason women are suffering oppression–from Radhakrishnan’s article. It’s true that the traditional expectation of women has been that of submission, but how much of that is a reflection of patriarchal ideals? Yes, women are called to submit to Christ and to submit to others. But no less or more than men are called to submit to Christ and to others. Criticizing women for aggressiveness in the workplace but allowing men to continue the same practice is simply a double standard that perpetuates a false ideal for women. The fact is, people are supposed to submit to Christ and to one another. In the western workplace, competition, individualism, and supposed success have negative connotations for all people who step on each other or cut corners to get ahead. To say that it is only women who are out of place in this setting because they’re not being submissive enough…it simply isn’t helping.

In all honesty, I’m struggling to learn what it means to be a woman of God, especially one who is learning leadership skills that will be contested when put into practice in just about any local church setting. Because I am more accommodating by nature, I have to struggle to learn to say no and stand up for myself when situations call for confrontation. Should I learn to overcome these issues, does that make me less of a woman? Am I then stepping outside of my required submissive state? Have I then bought into some “feminist” formula that sets me apart from God’s plan for me?

I do think Brianna has a point that life is not as God ordained it to be. We don’t live in Eden where everything is right. But the idea of womanly submission has played too detrimental of a role in society to be left alone. All of humanity is called to submit to God. All of humanity is called to submit to one another. To stress that role for women and leave the men out of it is tantamount to dragging the adulterous woman naked into the street to be stoned (an extreme example, I know) while leaving the adulterous man to remake his bed, comb his hair, and wonder what’s for dinner.

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2 Responses to “Response to Brianna’s blog”

  1. Brianna said

    I appreciate your comment and want to clear up something that you mentioned in your response. I agree that it is a man role to submit to God just as much as a womens role but the fact that the article raised questions and keyed in on the identity and role of Women in society, I chose to touch on that role. I believe God has called every human being into complete submission unto him but this doesnt entail forgetting your own morals and principles being that they are entacted with God’s. Being submissive does not in my mind mean to be passive or less aggressive for that matter but instead I see much strength in this act as I believe God does. I strongly believe that ones identity can be found in submission to the Lord thus, all negitive portrayal of woman can go in one ear and out the other. I just think some women act or show un needed aggressiveness out of anger and resentment do to this distorted perception of the role of women, but of course this does not mean all women. Lastly I agree that men also fall under this category of distorted motives but I simply chose to discuss women. Let me know what you think but thank you for your honesty 🙂

  2. lauraknowles said

    I agree with you, Brianna. I meant more to criticize those who always talk about the woman’s submission and ignore the same call for men. Like I said, I was disagreeing more with the premise than with your actual post. I’m glad you raised the issue. It’s just a tender point for me right now because of other conversations I’ve been having with people who aren’t as aware of the implications of their comments as you and I are. Thanks for making the effort to clarify your point. It’s important to continue dialoging about these issues.

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