This era we are in is definitive in our history because of the changing in the role of women; all through our history we have been defined by what men have done, and that is mostly kill each other, oppress one another and leave monuments to past glories.
At the battle of Isis Alexander the Great faced 200,000 Persians to his 40,000 and defeated them; there is no record of women’s opinion on the matter. Women on both sides must have wondered at the stupidity of war and futility of fighting testosterone.
History would have been very different if women had the upper hand in the gender war; but what kind of world would it be? Maybe the world would smell better for a start, maybe the guns’ factories would be manufacturing high-heeled shoes instead, less war as the leaders would all have a spa session together with facials, manicured, and low-fat chocolate.
Of course I am being ridiculous but I have seen the future; when women gain power, they will never let it go. In the future it will be hard for a man to be elected to office, of have a senior position, and all because of one thing only.
There is only one thing holding women of today back and when they figure it out it will be a revolution; the work-life balance conundrum is what is holding back progress.
How to fulfil the caring role which they love while also fulfilling their own goals; in the UK, women are emancipated compared to third world women and yet they earn less than British men, simply because of the work-life question.
It is interesting to contrast the fortunes of women in the First and Third worlds; I find a curious mirroring process. Western women are regressing but Third women are progressing.
Western women are taking career breaks for family life, a woman I know left a job paying $200,000 to raise her children; in Africa, aspiring mothers have the benefit of cheap childcare so it is a matter of time management. When a man with children is elected to office, we often know his wife sacrificed for him, like Obama admits his wife and mother-law are the bedrock of his life; but when a woman with children is elected we ask “how did she do that?” Like Christine Fernandez de Kirchner, president of Argentina; she let her husband be president first, only to demand her post when she thought she could do better. She still had to fit in a family, politics and private time for herself which is a complex mathematical formula. I remember watching a programme in the UK about a British crew which went to the Danakil depression to film geo-thermal activity, they had to stay with the Afar tribesmen in Northern Ethiopia.
The Afar are a mysterious warlike nomadic tribe from the hottest and most inhospitable place on earth; it is safe to say that they live like they always have, on the edge of life and death. Kate Humble is a British TV presenter; as nice and wholesome as apple pie, the right balance of middle-class charm and western naivety.
Ms. Humble decided to live with the Afar women and she did it with all the gusto she could muster but then life broke her will; she struggled to keep up on the long 40 km treks for water. She cried and felt sorry for her Afar sister; but ironically they pitied her as well, there is nothing funnier than mutual pity.
The conversations were funny “how many miles do you walk to water in Britain?” and she trying to explain said water came in a tap. It made me think what happiness is; is it not knowing? Or is it knowing and choosing?
The Afar women know nothing but what seems like misery; one cannot say they are happy because they didn’t have the choice of what their lives should be like.
This is a condition most of humanity is in; being born in a world of poverty with no power to change fundamental aspects of their life; my parents are from the first generation to be educated and have choices their parents never had, I take this right for granted and future generations even more so.
In life the more options you have the better, the more options women have, the more options we all have as people. So lets sit back and see where women will take this world of ours.