Cultural Relativity

I always get a kick out of how so many preferences are culturally specific. 200 years ago, ‘work’ was a four-letter-word among the elite, whereas today, ‘idle’ is. Romans adored their aristocratic noses while nowadays nose jobs abound. Chinese meekness versus American confidence.

So I was naturally entertained by this article about how tall women are more desirable in Sudan, even if it’s not exactly for beauty reasons.

But there were two things in the article that struck me. The first is the chief’s sunglasses. It’s kinda hard not to be struck by them. The other was his bafflement when asked what women think of the matrimonial arrangement. Like, “What? They think? Do you also ask your cows what they think of your herding?”

So I was wondering: where did Western man slip up and allow Western woman out from under his thumb?


8 thoughts on “Cultural Relativity

  1. I wonder. The Greeks, for instance, kept their women more suppressed than the Romans, who gave them more rights than many others (nothing amazing, mind you, just some basic stuff. Maybe). Throw in the Roman empire, and all sorts of bad influences take root. The Welsh women, in comparison to the English, had the right of divorce, could not be beaten by their husbands, and could object if he had a woman on the side.

    I suppose it was those terrifying females at the turn of the century who fought for women’s rights in unflattering clothing that have to be thanked. I think the governments did what the Roman parliament did – gave in to stop the yakking.

  2. Well, if you consider that Woody the Wilson got his stroke in 1919 (after which his wife signed the bills), and women got the right to vote in 1920, you get your answer. Considering that income tax was made constitutional only a few years before that, the decade was not good for freedom.

  3. Please note that Ariella is not this one. Tall girls — or, at least average height ones — apparently, are also considered more desirable in shidduch circles. I’ve been told by parents of a girl who does not make it to 5 feet unless she is standing in high heels that she is sometimes rejected out of hand for height. And I’m certain that all those bachurim are not over 6 feet tall.

  4. It was a spiritual ethical awakening that followed on the the heels of the ethical awakening opposing unequal treatment, that was the anti slavery movement.

    Princess Lea you should be ashamed of yourself. “Stop the yakking”??? Would you ever dare talk about any other human rights movement with such disrespect?

  5. bad4, are you from LA? or you just happened to find this really random article online? Just wondering.

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