I didn’t grow up in patriarchy, or at least I didn’t know that I did till I was reached adulthood. I grew up in a matriarchy. Women were the authority figures in my life, the people upholding my communities. To all intents and purposes I grew up in the matriarchal enclaves created when mothers were ghettoised by our economic approach. Women were the heads of households, there was no question women could not do what men did, because they had to. So we didn’t discuss it.
Communities bound by children, and caring for others. And looking after the vulnerable because noone else was. I think matriarchies existed all over the place when I was a kid. I think The Sun told governments to call them something else and our political class never bothered to check.
My working life was spent in traditionally female professions, because I felt that work was important. Growing up in the environment I did, ensured I understood that. I didn’t really ever understand the constant discussion about misogyny among the mainstream political feminists. Or how gender inequality could be manifested so deeply. Not when I had never seen that kind of misogyny face to face in the society I understood had addressed it. Equality legislation recognising inequality had passed years before I was born.
I found out in the last year why political commentators are always going on about misogyny. The culture around politics and the media is defined by it. And elitism.. The poverty those communities did have to discuss and work around, in lieu of erudite discussion of patriarchy is the result of it. The turnover of families in those communities which had to stay whole, increasing, the older I got.