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Home / Feminism / Radical Feminism / Feminist: The Invention of the Alphabet is the Root of Sexism, Misogyny and Patriarchy
alphabet-is-mysoginistic

Feminist: The Invention of the Alphabet is the Root of Sexism, Misogyny and Patriarchy

Is there a dark side to literacy?  Apparently so, according to a book by Leonard Shlain.  In his book, “The Alphabet Versus the Goddess: The Conflict Between Word and Image,” he argues (Emphasis added):

Of all the sacred cows allowed to roam unimpeded in our culture, few are as revered as literacy. Its benefits have been so incontestable that in the five millennia since the advent of the written word numerous poets and writers have extolled its virtues. Few paused to consider its costs. . . . One pernicious effect of literacy has gone largely unnoticed: writing subliminally fosters a patriarchal outlook. Writing of any kind, but especially its alphabetic form, diminishes feminine values and with them, women’s power in the culture. […] Literacy has promoted the subjugation of women by men throughout all but the very recent history of the West. Misogyny and patriarchy rise and fall with the fortunes of the alphabetic written word. [1]

In other words, the “invention of the alphabet” created “the patriarchy,” which in turn sparked all the world’s sexism. [3]  Can you imagine anything more ridiculous than that?  As evidence of this lunacy, Maria Popova notes, Shlain turns to the Bible and religion:

The Old Testament was the first alphabetic written work to influence future ages. Attesting to its gravitas, multitudes still read it three thousand years later. The words on its pages anchor three powerful religions: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Each is an exemplar of patriarchy. Each monotheistic religion features an imageless Father deity whose authority shines through His revealed Word, sanctified in its written form. Conceiving of a deity who has no concrete image prepares the way for the kind of abstract thinking that inevitably leads to law codes, dualistic philosophy, and objective science, the signature triad of Western culture. I propose that the profound impact these ancient scriptures had upon the development of the West depended as much on their being written in an alphabet as on the moral lessons they contained.

Goddess worship, feminine values, and women’s power depend on the ubiquity of the image . God worship, masculine values, and men’s domination of women are bound to the written word. Word and image, like masculine and feminine, are complementary opposites. Whenever a culture elevates the written word at the expense of the image, patriarchy dominates. When the importance of the image supersedes the written word, feminine values and egalitarianism flourish.

The basic theory goes like this: pre-written word, there is evidence that at least some civilizations maintained basic harmony between the sexes, or favored femininity; post-written word, which apparently is inherently “masculine,” “the patriarchy,” by natural consequence, became a worldly cornerstone, with all its corresponding sexism and misogyny. [3] Theorizing over the “dark side” of literacy, Shlain argues that the invention of the alphabet “is what tilted the balance of power toward the masculine — a shift that took place eons ago, but one that is also evidenced by isolated indigenous cultures of the present and recent past,” notes Popova. Shlain essentially claims that there is evidence that pre-literate civilization relations between the sexes were harmonious, “in which women had power and influence greater than or even equal to that of men.” His”evidence,” “the Iroquois and the Hopi in North America, the inhabitants of Polynesia, the African Kung.”  [3]

At the light of this incredible knowledge are we now supposed to get rid of the alphabet?  Maybe feminists a leftist loons would rather we not teach our kids to read and write.  Popova calls the book “a fascinating read in its entirety” but if you have any common sense left you will soon come the the conclusion that it’s worth reading only because “it proves Michael Savage’s maxim that liberalism is a mental disorder.” [1] According to this feminist perspective, “the solution to sexism is simple: more art class, less language arts — because apparently in the world of reading and writing, women are simply out of their depth.” [3]

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[1] Joe Newby, Feminist: Invention of alphabet the root of sexism, misogyny and patriarchy, Conservative Firing Line,  August 6, 2016
[3] AMANDA PRESTIGIACOMO, Crazy Leftists Blame the Alphabet for Creation of Sexism, Daily Wire,  AUGUST 8, 2016

About Bill Wallace

Bill Wallace is a self-fashioned writter, a computer programmer and cybermarketer from Quebec City, Canada who decided to enter the political arena after his disillusionment with the socialist system under which he was living in the French Canadian province of Quebec.