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Patriarchy In Pakistan Essay

1330 words - 5 pages

Patriarchy in PakistanPakistan belongs to a part of the world where a woman's status can be measured by indicators such as sex ratio, literacy levels, economic activity, labor-force participation, and women in government. The Constitution of Pakistan gives equal rights to both men and women. However in reality men have manipulated women to become more powerful than women. Men hold most top end positions in government while women rarely appear in positions of power. According to the "UN Statistics and Indicators on Women and Men" it can be seen the there is inequality amongst gender when it comes to participation in political decision-making and economic decision-making. It also portrays that in a Pakistani society, a woman's status is always lower than the male partner. She is deprived of a good education, food, health care and freedom of choice of partner, number of children and other essentials of life. These are some of the factors that play a role in the life expectancy, resulting in women living a shorter life than men.In his book "What is this thing called Patriarchy" Johnson states that there are four characteristics of patriarchy that are rooted in the social structure of a society. The first characteristic is that there is a male dominated social system. This does not mean that all men are powerful or that all women are powerless but means in a position where someone has power it tends to be a male. The "UN Statistics and Indicators on Women and Men" show the statistics for the percentage of women legislators and women in parliament in Pakistan throughout the years, it can be seen that there hasn't been an increase at all. Instead women's share of legislators, senior officials and managers is a merely 3% and only 22% of parliamentary seats in single or lower chamber are occupied by women. The second characteristic of patriarchy is a society is organized around an obsession for control this is often is used to elevate men. In the same table the Percentage of women in adult labor force is 21%, which suggests men strive to have a greater part in the economy leading to males being contributors to the family, which puts them in control. The third characteristic is that patriarchies are male identified. Johnson mentions how the word mankind and the use of the word guys are used when referring to a group that includes women as well. This can be seen in Pakistan where societies prefer to have male children or a male first-born mostly for economic reasons. Men want their family to be identified by a male dominant member. A male child is preferred since they have greater earning potential and the ability to lead a strong patriarchal family. The table also shows how the legal minimum age for a woman to get married is 16. Arranged marriages being a norm in a Pakistani society, fathers usually marry off their daughters to a male adult. Still being at the tender age of 16 she is oppressed under a male. All the children bears are considered to belong...

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