Today is well marked, but it is yesterday’s contribution from Native Wisdom for White Minds that seems apt. I quote it in full:
The assumptions that were made about the roles of Aboriginal women by these men were based on gross misconceptions. Women were regarded as having little authority in Aboriginal society. Such observations were made by the white men imposing their own cultural values on Aboriginal society.
– Maggie Kavanagh
When tribal people observe Western culture, they often state that the women and their work seem to have no value and that this bias is projected onto them as well.
In Western culture, women seem to believe that to be of value, they need to be of value in the same way men are.
What have we to learn from a culture where all work is valued and people are valued as they do it?
We have a lot to learn about what would happen if women were women and men were men and each did the work they were called to do.
It occurs to me the last sentence could be open to misunderstanding, particularly when taken out of context. It is the argument that has often been used by a patriarchal system to oppress women and keep them in subjugative roles. Shift the focus to “the work they are called to do” and there is the potential for a vast shift in perspective, depending on whether one sees vocation as fixed or imaginatively creative. I celebrate the women (and men – but, today, particularly the women) who have broken barriers to imaginatively and creatively answer their calling.