Aristotle's Patriarchy Analysis

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Throughout history, woman’s self has been Other in discourse, literature, and doctrine. She has been designated this position in the world by those who hold social power. This dichotomy is maintained under a hierarchy that serves to benefit men. I will be attempting to support Beauvoir’s idea of the self as Other under a patriarchal society by looking at statements from philosophers and myths, as well as identifying shortcomings she may have.
Aristotle is one of the earliest philosophers to help establish woman’s place as Other. For Aristotle, individuals act as parts whose participation contributes to the good of the polis (Femenias, 165). Women are not beneficiaries of this relationship, rather, they are subordinate by nature which prevents them from sociopolitical gain (166). Patriarchy in the Greek family and society have influenced Aristotle to believe it’s impossible to change the nature by which women are confined
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Aquinas shares the Aristotelian sentiment of women being lesser than man (McGowan, 214). In fact, her birth conveys a failure to conceive the member of the perfect sex (214). If the body affects the quality of the soul, as Hobbes believes, and women are accidents, they are inherently inferior and destined for imperfection. Moreover, women contribute passively to their offspring (215). The father is to be loved more due to his excellence and authority (216). Women are not just subjugated through their body, but also under social order. Aquinas believes it is natural to subject women to male rule. After all, humanity requires some to be governed by excellent men (216). It’s no accident that women are excluded, since they can only passively contribute to society. The man-woman dichotomy is comparable to that of the free man-slave relationship (216). This division indicates woman’s status as Other from the moment she is born. She is to be nothing more than a weaker companion to
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