The Gorean Compass class from May 5th. Sorry, I did get a little behind in posting these, but we are getting them up for your perusal. As always a reminder that these classes are offered on Thursdays at 12noon and 6pm SLT at the Gorean Campus in Second Life. All are encouraged to attend these excellent classes and join in the discussions.
Tal and greetings
Welcome back after our short one week break!
While I was away, I had some quiet time to muse upon our Gorean world, and especially, our Second Life version of it.
During the recent election cycle in the United States down there on Earth, it was a favorite tactic of one Party to hurl a whole series of “names” at one of the candidate. Most of the names were accusations of irrational dislike or fears of various things. It was a whole list of “phobias”
In the middle of the list, you could usually find “misogynist.” And after a comment about women not caring about you grabbing them by the pussy if you have enough money, and they are that type of women, that one moved to the top of the list.
I found that strange as I had always defined misogyny as an irrational hatred of women, and grabbing them by the pussy did not seem a logical expression of hatred.
I suspected the definition might be broader, and sure enough, here is the google definition.
Misogyny (/mɪˈsɒdʒɪni/) is the hatred of, contempt for, or prejudice against women or girls. Misogyny can be manifested in numerous ways, including social exclusion, sex discrimination, hostility, androcentrism, patriarchy, male privilege, belittling of women, violence against women, and sexual objectification
Goreans, obviously, do not have a “hatred” of women. But, there are certainly valid arguments to be made for “contempt for” or “prejudice against” women. Sexual discrimination, some hostility, patriarchy, male privilege, belittling , violence, and of course, sexual objectification are all a part of the Gorean enslavement of women in the books.
Following this broader definition, it is fair to say Gorean society and Gorean men are misogynists.
This definition had one part that I was not familiar with and had to check. Androcentrism.
Here is it’s definition.
Androcentrism (ancient Greek, ἀνήρ, “man, male”) is the practice, conscious or otherwise, of placing male human beings or a masculine point of view at the center of one’s world view, culture, and history.
Ahhhh, that is more like it. It could be argued that the Gorean novels, and the Gorean world view is very Androcentric. It is really all about Men, and how they should behave, and how they need to view themselves and their relationships to other men and to females.
I have noticed that when the author is talking through Tarl Cabot or Jason Marshall to relate his stories, he has them, often, say, “I do not understand women.” or words to the effect that a lot of his long speeches about submission and the behavior and mindset of slave girls is really how it “appears to him, and he isn’t really sure.”
The books narrated by slave girls are an exception. One would think that they would be the ones most confused and unsure, and many people have accused John Norman of not understanding women at all. Yet, I have spoken to many girls who tell me that “Slave Girl of Gor” or “Dancer of Gor” was the book that led them to Gor and/or sold them on it. So, he must have been onto something that resonated with them.
This is important to our seminar because we must ask the question. Is the Gorean philosophy androcentric? Is it seeing things from a male point of view and do the azimuths of the resulting Gorean compass point the same direction for males and females? Or in the same direction for Free Men and females slaves? My girl, Rhiannon, often asks this question in our discussions. “That is all well and good for you, Master, “she says, “but, does it apply to a slave girl?”
I think that a large portion of what makes up the points of a Gorean compass apply to human beings regardless of gender. There are many universal points of view that can be, and often are, here in Second Life Gor, freely discussed between males and females and between Free and slave. Most of the material discussed in these classes up to this point fall into this category as well.
However, one of those universal compass points is the idea that males and females are very, very, very different things. Goreans would laugh off a discussion of equality of the sexes in the same way we would laugh off a discussion of the equality of a rose and a sword. You can have a beautiful rose and a sharp well balanced sword, and might say they equally serve their intended roles, but they are not the same thing at all and comparisons between them are foolish. So, to the Gorean way of thinking, you can be an Honorable man, or a devoted slave girl, and those are admirable qualities, but not really good points of comparison when discussing “equality of the sexes” , which is a common Earth discussion topic.
So, it follows to reason that eventually there must be a split in that straight line compass point where males would be going off one way, and females the other. A point where the Free adhere to one standard, and slaves adhere to the other.
If we view our Gorean experience as a journey with a destination of self awareness and better understanding of our true natures, we have to accept that, although for a long way the path would be broad enough to be shared by all of us, eventually, it is going to deviate into several different pathways all leading to the same destination, perhaps, but following a different azimuth to get there.
I read a story yesterday that told of a well known feminist writer from Canada that became alarmed when her three year old son refused a gift of a flower by saying that it was a “pretty thing” and “only girls liked pretty things.” I guess he would rather have some mud to play with and a toy truck. Anyway, the alarmed mother is attempting to subdue this androcentric view of things by making the boy wear a head piece made up of daisies and signed him up to take ballet lessons.
I can imagine nothing that would befuddle the mind of a Gorean more than that story!
In the coming classes, we are going to follow some of those paths that diverge from the main path and are more gender specific and status specific than they are universal.
You can expect me to approach it from a androcentric point of view as I am a male and really can’t do it any other way.
As a Slaver and a Master, I know how to control females, and meet their basic needs, and keep them healthy and productive, and even how to make them love me from time to time, but I do not even claim to understand how they think or have any conception of what they must feel.
You can expect me to be using expressions like, “I think” or “I guess” or “it appears to me that”, much more often in these topics, and depending much more on the feedback from the enslaved and female members of the class to navigate these issues.
And I suggest that in your role play, you adapt an androcentric point of view, or if female, whatever its opposite is. Goreans, it appears, are misogynists despite their love of females , victims of the broader definitions. We think there is a big difference between genders and wouldn’t have it any other way. You are never going to get your Gorean role play right if it does not reflect that belief.