“… in all economic theories and models [the] life-producing and life- preserving work of women appears as a “free good” or a free resource, like air, water, sunshine. it appears to flow “naturally” from women’s body. “Housewifization” of women is therefore the necessary complement to the proletarianization of men.” Mies
Motherhood– pregnancy, childbirth, lactation and child-rearing– are regarded as an unecessary hindrance to the smooth-running of society.
It is not only corporations and politicians that regard mothers in this way; many women have also absorbed this view.
Women are segregated by their sex due to their potential to bear children and are punished in a myriad of ways for possessing these life-giving capacities . The most tangible way is workplace discrimination. Post-menopausal women, who can no longer bear children, are also punished if they attempt to re-enter the workforce after child-rearing.
When I talk about a new order valuing women, I’m not talking about anything similar to the divide and rule tactic we have going on at the moment. Oh mothers are idolized, especially when they are celebrities. Putting a few Good Mothers on a pedastol is a patriarchal tool, and the media is obsessed with it.
I am talking about a complete re-structuring of society which will place those things that are most important at the very centre, and for all else to be regarded as peripheral.
Children, the elderly and the disabled and those who care for them are seen as hindrances. They get in the way of Big Men and Important Work. .
This is the MOTHER of all patriarchal reversals.
Without women’s unpaid labour, men would have no clients, customers, citizens or soldiers.
Women and babies can survive and thrive without corporations but corporations are dependant on women to keep having babies. Surely it’s time to re-structure the way corporations run our lives to acknowledge this. But “Women have been conditioned to believe that men’s work is harder and more stressful than theirs, which is a con” as Greer noted.
Yes, and somehow women and men have been convinced that the work of corporations and politicians is more important, has more value, than the work of domesticity. By domesticity I mean all that is important in life: the growing of food and its preparation, the nurturing of children, care of the weak and vulnerable. 90% of the world’s food is grown by women, who own less than 10% of the world’s land (Jules Pretty, Agri-ulture)
The work of corporations, by contrast, is to pollute the earth. Cynics like Daly believed the poisoning of the planet by corporations was planned. Let us give them the benefit of the doubt and say planetary poisoning is not their goal, it is merely a by-product of all they produce. Whichever stance you take, you cannot argue with the statement that the work of corporations is to poison the planet.
The raison d’etre of corporations is do convince people that they and their product are necessary in order to make money. Millions of dollars are poured into advertising in order to do so. This is not the raison d’etre of child-rearing–even if mothers had millions of dollars handy, they wouldn’t spend it on convincing others that their job was important. They’d spend it on their children.
It works like this: the more vulnerable a group of people are, the more it is our duty as a society to support them.