Today, March 8th is “Women’s Day”. By now you should know the origin of the feast, which is not my concern here. In that day, some would offer ‘HER’ the traditional mimosa.. Some will settle for a warm hug.. Others a gift or maybe a cosy romantic dinner.. However, most women prefer outing alone, or with other women, to relax away from the consuming usual love/hate relationships. I decided to forward my best wishes to all ‘my’ women (please don’t misunderstand or misinterpret me or my intentions) this way.
Whether in New York or deep in the African deserts; collective popular conscience everywhere retain these two terms directly, and exclusively, related to ‘Masculine behaviour’. Yet, in our modern times, such understanding become totally inappropriate, even though it is rapidly growing parallel to the new sweeping tidal wave of Xenophobic Extreme Right movements energised by Fascist Nationalism, and its counterpart (maybe even ally) Religious Fascism.
Originally, as you may know, the term is due to a French soldier – Nicolas Chauvin – who fought the Napoleonic Wars and ended up badly wounded. Even after the abdication of Napoleon; Chauvin remained a fanatical Bonapartist. His single-minded blind devotion to his cause against general neglect and public harassment, allowed the term “Chauvinism” its widely spread use.
By extension, it has come to include an extreme and unreasoning partisanship on behalf of any group to which one belongs, especially when the partisanship includes ill intentions, malice and hatred towards rival groups. In addition, we find that “Male Chauvinism” is the belief that men are superior to women; which mostly is used associated with “Misogyny”: the attitude of total aversion and/or repulsion towards women.
Chauvinism, as a male superiority concept, is a classic of the ‘Jewish’ and ‘Muslim’ traditions. We can distinguish it in the Patriarchal structures in the Torah and the Koran; also like many oriental cultures and traditions do, as in India, China and Japan: where male intellectuals hold, and spouse, Misogynic views openly.
If we try to define the causes of Chauvinism, as a behaviour, we can dig them out from the 1976 Sherwyn Woods’ study about the Dynamics of Male Chauvinism. The study revealed that:
Symmetrically, women as well started to develop a similar attitude known as “Female Chauvinism” that critics normally deliberately use in relation to certain aspects of “Feminism”. If you want to elaborate on that issue, I suggest you look for a book entitled “Female Chauvinist Pigs” written by the second-wave feminist Ariel Levy, in which she argues that many young women in the United States and beyond are replicating male chauvinism and older misogynist stereotypes.
I will not comment the issue any further.. I just want to tell every woman:
“Happy women’s day; enjoy every bit of it; and remain certain that I understand your frustration and anxiety from what you and I know for sure: Man is not superior.. Was never superior, and will never be!! If men have become what you claim to be; don’t forget that you made him that way.. He has always been your son before becoming your adopted husband, companion, friend, lover…or whatever!!”.Pass On The Word.