Bartky Feeding Egos And Tending Wounds Pdf Writer
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- Feminist Phenomenology
- Gender Implications in Ewe Proverbs: A Close Study
- Call me ‘Mom’
- Feminist Phenomenology
It is an undeniable fact that, Africa is a continent known for its richness in oral arts. Proverbs from all ethnic groups in Africa are the most widely and commonly used and studied especially in the long-standing traditions of oral arts. In all oral arts, African proverbs have been essentially used in facilitating the transmission of knowledge and conventions from generation to generation.
One area hardly discussed is the role of African proverbs in creating and perpetuating gender dynamics in the society. A close analysis of African proverbs reveals a large amount of sexist proverbs and these could be looked at from post- modern theory of power relationships between social groups, and the role of language to mediate these relationships. Such an effort would help explore the implications of gender stereotypes hidden within languages hitherto unaccounted for or articulated.
By nature, every human society makes phenomenological interpretation of everyday experience through discourses, a construct that mediates their way of being in the world Foucault and Ewes too construct these discourses in the use of proverbs. Despite socioeconomic and political progress in Ewe communities linguistic resources are systematically used to perpetuate gender inequality.
The gendered ideology is discursively framed in some sexist proverbs because of discriminatory effects of the socio-cultural practices on women. Regardless how the proverb may be analyzed there are strong intertextual and intercultural threads between the ways proverbs represent the roles, statuses, and identity of women in Ewe society.
Undeniably, women are oppressed throughout the world and Ewe women are no exception. Even in parts of the world where race and gender differences in educational and other social achievements are said to have nearly disappeared, gender equity has not yet been attained. Padmore Agbemabiese 2 behave in the society are fundamental distinctions made between genders among people rooted in patriarchy culture.
This implies that a woman cannot claim any equality or prowess above a man if she wants to remain securely married to her man. Such a cultural language expects the woman to be submissive to the male authority. Without understanding these complexities in the language, tradition and culture, it is difficult to address the real needs of women in a given society such as that of the Ewes.
Women have been victims of gender ideology for ages now. Gender ideology is a systematic set of cultural beliefs through which a society constructs and wields its gender relations and practices Agbemabiese Gender ideology contains legends, narratives and myths about what it means to be a man or a woman and suggests how each should behave in the society.
A society strengthens its gender ideology as a form of everyday social practice. Every society has a set of systems to censure and control the normative concepts of masculine and feminine behaviors.
For example, among the Ewes, drumming groups are formed to display male chivalry in war, hunting and in the defense of the community whiles women have drumming groups that indicate their passion and caring for the dead Agbemabiese Thus, occasions are organized to routinely display and celebrate behaviors that are conventionally linked to one or the other sex category.
Ewe gender ideology, which is hidden in the language, traditions and culture, is a system used in shaping the lives of men and women, whereby each is placed in different social positions with patterns of expectations. In Africa, rituals, legends, name-giving ceremonies, oral narratives, proverbs, aphorisms and usages have been in the vanguard of mobilizing gender ideology CGSPS, ; Oha, ; Oluwole, True to the core, African oral traditions by their nature portray women in general as foolish, weak, jealous, evil, unfaithful, dependent, frivolous and seductive.
Padmore Agbemabiese 3 oral traditions is a symbol of warmth and all-nourishing goodness. The following stereotypes of female characteristics and capacities among the Nandi of Kenya show this reality. As reported by Oboler about two decades ago, among the Nandi, Men are believed to be more intelligent than women. Women are thought particularly to be incapable of foresight and to lack the ability to make and carry through sensible and realistic plans.
Similarly, Ewes also believe that women are no equal to men. Thus, as part of Ewe cultural heritage, some Ewe proverbs are embedded with subversive images of women and by their very nature, they confirm societal norms and values about genders. In the study of Ewe proverbs, researchers need to be careful not to jump too easily to conclusions about the kind of image proverbs portray of women in Ewe society.
First of all, it is essential to take into account that readers are not necessarily insiders, which should at least inspire in them a good dose of modesty.
Secondly, proverbs are not isolated sayings: they function in a complex social and cultural context. In Ewe societies, gender ideology figures largely in proverbs Agbemabiese In order to better understand the gender ideology loaded in proverbs and for that matter language in general , it is imperative to ground it within the post-modern view of language as bearer of the matrix of privilege and domination.
Post-modern thinkers strongly challenge a commonly-held and overtly simplistic view of language as a means of communication Giroux, In a gendered society like in the patriarchal world of the Ewes, language is used to express how groups should behave, and relate to the external world and to each other.
Language offers them the opportunity to construct stereotypes of self and others. The dominant groups use their languages to facilitate their oppression of and aggression or prejudice against those they dominate Goke-Pariola, ; Nwagbara, Proverbs are among the most widely used pieces of oral artistry though no one can point to its creator or originator.
Regardless where it originates, their sources are considered experts. In an oral culture, the experts are - mainly or exclusively - chiefs, elders and ancestors, as specialists on tradition and as its representatives or symbols. Among Ewes and other ethnic groups of Africa, proverbs are repositories of social and cultural wisdom Finnegan, ; Mbiti, ; Ssetuba ; Sumner, New shades of meaning may develop in new situations in which the proverb is used.
In his society, it means, literally, that a woman has no right to have sexual intercourse soon after delivering a baby, and neither does a woman who has her period. In this man's particular situation, it means that regardless his situation he is a human with needs.
The example makes clear that an originally simple straightforward saying with a literal meaning may become metaphorical and thus applicable to other situations. Sometimes it is used in both ways by the same community. People use proverbs to increase the clarity as well as semantic effect of what they want to say. It is possible to state through proverbs what otherwise is difficult to communicate through formation of words. The problem is that while one thinks highly of the colorful imagery of proverbs and their value- carrying roles, one usually ignores their sexist undertone Oha, In Eweland and in Africa as a whole, proverbs about men and women have long been reproduced irrespective of the potential psychological and political battering which their utterances cause to the recipients.
My own study of the cultural representation of women in the Ewe society indicated the harmful effects of the meaning of some proverbs about womanhood.
Yet, little to no attention is given to this aspect of the function of proverbs among the Ewe society. Meaning, give way lazy, idle woman. Language among Ewes is a symbolic act of both representing and valuing of things. As we cannot separate a dance from its dancer, we cannot separate what we say about something from our attitude towards that thing.
Largely, the extent to which a sexist proverb serves as an instrument of repression is determined by the wider context of the use of the proverb. If we try to understand proverbs outside the social and cultural circumstances that govern their production and perception, we have lost a large part of their meaning.
Ewe Proverbs and the Regime of Truth Majority of the studies on proverbs and other oral arts among Ewe communities have not addressed the extent to which public arts can be manipulated to perpetuate gender inequalities.
Padmore Agbemabiese 6 be, she cannot own a talking drum as a comment among other things, on the dangers of a woman making an effort to be equal men in prosperity. This proverb defines the space a woman can occupy and therefore carries a gendered tone of the genre. Recent studies on proverbs have also revealed that proverbs have been used to maintain gendered life in many cultures through conveying the people's understanding of masculinity and femininity. These works have attempted to show also that sexist proverbs offer their users insights about the wider discourse of gender as it is practiced through other symbolic and material representations and actions.
The way Ewe proverbs and other public arts are used to legitimize inequalities can be explained using Michel Foucault's "regime of truth": Each society has its regime of truth, its 'general politics' of truth: that is, the types of discourse which it accepts and makes function as true; the mechanisms and instances which enable one to distinguish true and false statements, the means by which each is sanctioned; the techniques and procedures accorded value in the acquisition of truth; the status of those who are charged with saying what counts as true.
In the introduction to the Penguin Dictionary of Proverbs , it is said that proverbs "do not have to be true" vi , since they sometimes contradict each other. In proverbs on women this is sometimes the case; for example, the issue of monogamy can be looked at differently. In a proverb like this, however, it seems to me that the issue of the perspective they represent is much more important, because it can be used in both ways—male or female. Padmore Agbemabiese 7 A factor essential in studying gender in proverbs in fact with regard to all kinds of texts , is to see the relevance in the following types of questions: Who is speaking or who is quoting?
Whose views are presented? Who is the subject and who is the object? Who profits from the impact such quotations have? Whose is the general consensus referred to? Whose power is perpetuated, and at the expense of whom? With the quote, the speaker gives a value judgment. The proverb's authority and its evaluative nature exhort the listener to agree. Although there are cases where the authoritative aspect of the proverb is not so much stressed, in many proverbs on women it apparently plays a role.
When authors talk about the general consensus on proverbs and their objectivity as a source of information, they often idealize, nostalgically and romantically, their eternal truth, indestructible roots and indispensable wisdom, as guards of social harmony and good conduct.
For the time being, it seems justified to ask some questions on the speaker's gender , perspective and interests before taking the general consensus for granted. It is important to observe here that, the construction of people's everyday realities, with so much emphasis on woman's maternal role has led to the opposition between "domestic" and "public" hence the genderization in proverbs.
In general, the idea is that the roles are asymmetrical; women, confined to the domestic sphere, do not have access to the sorts of authority, prestige, and cultural value that are the prerogatives of men. Given this imbalance, the exercise of power by women is often seen as illegitimate, and the avenues by which women gain prestige and a sense of value are shaped and often limited by their association with the domestic world.
Can women rebel? Therefore, the writer leaves to the reader s the delicacy inherent in the ways the proverbs affect each person. Padmore Agbemabiese 8 relationships between discourse, intertextuality, and the context under which the proverb is used. In so doing, one can easily see the ideological foundations of the regime of power and knowledge depicted in the proverbs. In sum, the scorns staged against women—for example, the proverbial claim that women lack control over their own body, thoughts, and actions—are patriarchal society's ideological strategies to discursively delimit wornen's sphere of influence in the society.
Gender Implications in Ewe Proverbs: A Close Study
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I care deeply about those around me, whether about their emotional wellbeing or their safety. I enjoy helping others — I love it when I am able to give advice to someone or just to be present and listen to someone discuss their problems. This is the term that Bartky uses to describe the emotional work that women are often expected to do in their relationships with others. While being empathetic and attentive are good personal qualities to have, their exercise can be taxing for those who possess them, because they are qualities that best equip someone to perform emotional labour. I love to help others, but this makes me very susceptible to the emotions of others; if my friends are sad or stressed, I can sometimes begin to feel that way as well. Further, although I often enjoy the supportive aspect of being the mom friend, I often feel obligated to fill this role, as if the wellbeing of those around me is my responsibility.
Call me ‘Mom’
She was The cause was complications of intestinal surgery, said a colleague, Linda Nicholson, a professor at Washington University in St. The face of the ideally feminine woman must never display the marks of character, wisdom and experience that we so admire in men. Until then, similar manuscripts had been largely relegated to underground presses.
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