Wassily Kandinsky: On White (1923)
Those of us who care about reconstructing a notion of patriarchy spend a lot of time studying the standards extant in healthier cultures. We are motivated by the pragmatic desire to find what works, in order to promote such ideals among our own lost peoples.
Some examples include our own culture, which enjoyed much saner mores, prior to about 1955. Certain other societies provide practical examples. There are also prehistoric accounts, extant in sources like the Hebrew Bible, Talmud, and Epic of Gilgamesh. And then there are notions from classical antiquity.
One static artifact that exists in across times and cultures is the woman’s privilege within her own home. This privilege exists whether the woman owns her own home outright, or whether she lives with her husband, father, or brother.
I pulled this photo off a web page, but it depicts (as I tried to capture) the sex-specific doorknockers on contemporary Iranian homes. I’ll give you the rundown, as I understand it, as a tourist of a few years ago, who wasn’t really paying attention to such important things.
In Iran, if you go knocking at a door, the first thing you do is to use the correct knocker. IIRC, the male doorknocker looks intuitively like a penis, and the female knocker looks like a vagina. You knock on the door with the dick-door-knocker, which sounds distinctly different compared with its female counterpart. You use your left hand, because your right hand is already up, covering your eyes.
You cover your eyes and use the dick-door-knocker, because in Iran, a woman has the right to walk around bare assed and topless in her own home, or in her husband’s home. Her beauty and her body is for her husband’s enjoyment, not for the general public’s amusement.
If a skank-ho wimminz walked around in public naked, in small-town Iran, she’d get a prison sentence, or at least get her ass whipped in front of her neighbors. The burden of modesty is legally inverted in the woman’s home. When you knock at a stranger’s door, it is theoretically possible for a nekkid woman to open up that door, and if you gawk at her, you’re the one who is going to do prison time, or at least get a good beating, by the morality cops, out in the town square. She is held harmless, because she had a reasonable expectation of privacy in her husband’s house.
I haven’t looked for an example of a man getting his ass beat, after looking at a nekkid broad in the doorway, but knowing wimminz the way we do, I wouldn’t be surprised if there were examples of careless dudes who got set up for this. Really, people were so careful to warn me (a dumb Canadian tourist) about it, that it’s safe to assume it to be common knowledge, and I wouldn’t feel too sorry for the chump who did get punished for peeping.
1 And it came to pass, after the year was expired, at the time when kings go forth to battle, that David sent Joab, and his servants with him, and all Israel; and they destroyed the children of Ammon, and besieged Rabbah. But David tarried still at Jerusalem.
2 And it came to pass in an eveningtide, that David arose from off his bed, and walked upon the roof of the king’s house: and from the roof he saw a woman washing herself; and the woman was very beautiful to look upon.
3 And David sent and enquired after the woman. And one said, Is not this Bathsheba, the daughter of Eliam, the wife of Uriah the Hittite?
4 And David sent messengers, and took her; and she came in unto him, and he lay with her; for she was purified from her uncleanness: and she returned unto her house.
5 And the woman conceived, and sent and told David, and said, I am with child.
6 And David sent to Joab, saying, Send me Uriah the Hittite. And Joab sent Uriah to David.
7 And when Uriah was come unto him, David demanded of him how Joab did, and how the people did, and how the war prospered.
8 And David said to Uriah, Go down to thy house, and wash thy feet. And Uriah departed out of the king’s house, and there followed him a mess of meat from the king.
9 But Uriah slept at the door of the king’s house with all the servants of his lord, and went not down to his house.
10 And when they had told David, saying, Uriah went not down unto his house, David said unto Uriah, Camest thou not from thy journey? why then didst thou not go down unto thine house?
11 And Uriah said unto David, The ark, and Israel, and Judah, abide in tents; and my lord Joab, and the servants of my lord, are encamped in the open fields; shall I then go into mine house, to eat and to drink, and to lie with my wife? as thou livest, and as thy soul liveth, I will not do this thing.
12 And David said to Uriah, Tarry here to day also, and to morrow I will let thee depart. So Uriah abode in Jerusalem that day, and the morrow.
13 And when David had called him, he did eat and drink before him; and he made him drunk: and at even he went out to lie on his bed with the servants of his lord, but went not down to his house.
14 And it came to pass in the morning, that David wrote a letter to Joab, and sent it by the hand of Uriah.
15 And he wrote in the letter, saying, Set ye Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retire ye from him, that he may be smitten, and die.
16 And it came to pass, when Joab observed the city, that he assigned Uriah unto a place where he knew that valiant men were.
17 And the men of the city went out, and fought with Joab: and there fell some of the people of the servants of David; and Uriah the Hittite died also.
So, we’ve got a man who climbs up onto his roof to peep at his neighbor’s wife. He decides he likes her enough to get her to come on over and fuck him. Once she becomes pregnant, our man decides to kill her husband. Incidentally, that husband is depicted as being unwaveringly loyal, both to his boss, and to his men.
As a misogynist, I enjoy blaming wimminz for their crap behavior. Even so, I can’t find fault with this wimminz initially. People on Dalrock disagree, yet, none of them can make a very convincing argument with the text.
Bathsheba can certainly be blamed for jumping the fence, and catting around with her husband’s boss. But, can she be blamed for bathing in her own home? A careful reading of patriarchal mores would suggest she was harmless, before the sexy time.
And in case you’re worried that I’m being selective, and applying contemporary Iranian mores to the Bible, I’ve got other sources that give us the same verdict. Cicero’s Letters paint a very clear picture of this female privilege, as it was enjoyed by his wife, Terentia. So, the custom existed in Rome. It also existed in the American State of Washington, as it is encoded in RCW 9A.44.115.
This general notion is not limited to Ancient Rome, or people in Seattle. Laws against peeping exist in every state and province in North America, suggesting that a healthier society inverts the imperative to modesty when a female is in her own house.