I found this comment at Roissy’s (thanks to namae namka linking to this blog in another comment):
“Why the difference? *Women are reproductively more valuable than men*.”
I wonder how true this is today though. Clearly in today’s world the need for reproduction is very different than before (no need for more hands on the farm, etc.); and, for certain segments of the population society would probably benefit from their non-reproduction.
In fact, I think the obvious gender-wide frustration of women today can partly be explained by this lowered value of children/reproduction altogether. Women understand that their primary purpose will always be tied up with reproduction and not civilization-altering achievement; now that this purpose has been largely removed, what do they have left? Female claims of males becoming increasingly ‘redundant’ are classic cases of projection: men are as useful as ever, whereas women’s role as child-bearer is rapidly becoming unnecessary and in many cases even harmful.
How much longer will women maintain these privileges after reproduction gas little place in society?
Plus, the older privileges were predicated on women’s willingness to become mothers at a young age to bear healthy children for tribe; how many of today’s women fit this description? If you don’t measure up to the job, you shouldn’t get the benefits…
The bold was added by me. Namae namka responded to that part with a link to my post on feminist paranoia about artificial wombs and other reproductive technologies and with good reason. Before even our current level of technology, women were in complete and total control of reproduction. Women could get knocked up by one guy and claim another guy is the dad and there was no way of knowing what the truth was. First came increased scientific knowledge about reproduction. Before that the process of reproduction would have been considered to be almost magical given women room to exercise total control. This lessened women’s control over reproduction. In the 20th century came paternity testing so men could know without a doubt who a child’s father is. Now women have no room to hide except that the law allows for paternity fraud. Eventually we will have artificial wombs which will allow men to have children without women if they so choose. The artificial womb represents control of reproduction being wrestled away from women. This is a pretty direct progression of how women become less and less necessary in reproduction.
However, there are other angles to what is going on here. One thing technology has done is allow more babies to survive birth and survive childhood. Before modern medicine if you wanted 2 or 3 children to survive to adulthood you probably would have to have six or more babies. Having that many babies was the only way to be sure to enough survived to adulthood. This is still the case in many places. If you know that to have 2 or 3 children survive to adulthood, you only need to have 2 or 3 babies, then that’s a lot less time spent on reproduction (and associated child rearing). And we don’t need to breed more hands to work on the farm either. This is another angle of how women are less necessary for reproduction.
Knowing this the socon and tradcon call for large families becomes a form of white knighting for women. Having only 2 or 3 kids nowadays leaves a lot of time before and after children. What are women doing then? (Sending women to work is obviously not an answer as the last few decades have shown us.) Large families are the socon/tradcon attempt to (unconsciously) paper over this problem.
The last part of the comment that I bolded says that women’s role as child bearer in many cases is becoming harmful. This is obviously true. All the pathologies caused by single mothers do not need to be repeated here. Beyond single motherhood take a look at younger women in their 20s. How many of them would you really trust to be mothers even if divorce wasn’t an issue? Take a look at the current crop of teenage girls, and it’s clear they will be even worse for motherhood than women currently in their 20s. Don’t forget all the misandry that these women carry which will have a negative impact on any sons you might have with them. I have taken flak for talking about alternatives for men to have children such as artificial wombs in the future and surrogate mothers in places like the Rotunda clinic in India. All things being equal the two parent family is probably better for raising children, but all things are not equal. Because of divorce the two parent family can become single motherhood at the drop of a hat. Single fatherhood from the beginning is better than that. Even without divorce women are increasingly unqualified to be mothers. And if you have sons you will be introducing misandry to them in your home. We are getting to a point where single fatherhood may be the superior system of raising children, especially when it comes to raising sons.