The phrase “the weaker sex” is considered offensive to many people. I believe that the phrase is representative of acceptable oppression of women and should be considered obsolete in our modern language.
Now, the ladies being together under these circumstances, it was extremely natural that the discourse should turn upon the propensity of mankind to tyrannize over the weaker sex, and the duty that developed upon the weaker sex to resist that tyranny and assert their rights and dignity. – Charles Dickens, The Old Curiosity Shop (1841)
Why we received the title of ‘The Weaker Sex”
Women were considered the weaker sex because war and bloodshed was put into the hands of the males. Men were more expendable than women. Men were the hunters and women were the gatherers. Women created and nurtured life, while men tortured and destroyed life. This made women unfit as warriors.
We now know that although men have greater upper body strength, that women have greater general body strength and a higher pain threshold. Perhaps our wars may have even been more brutal if left in the hands of women.
The strength inherent in our perceived weakness
I quite like the concept of a woman being the eye through which beauty is perceived in this world. Perhaps words such as delicate, soft, and quiet, are perceived as words indicating weakness. People who believe that beauty is weak have obviously never seen a panther at full pace, or a tornado curling discriminatingly across the land.
I want to share with you an excerpt from a novel I am currently reading – Cleopatra by H. Rider Haggard (1889):
“For woman in her weakness, is yet the strongest force upon the earth. She is the helm of all things human; she comes in many shapes and knocks at many doors; she is quick and patient, and her passion is not ungovernable like that of man, but as a gentle steed she can guide e’en where she will, and as occasion offers can now bit up and now give rein.
She has a captain’s eye, and stout must be that fortress of the heart in which she finds no place of vantage.
Does thy blood beat fast in youth? She will outrun it, nor will her kisses tire.
Art thou set towards ambition? She will unlock thy inner heart, and show thee roads that lead to glory.
Art thou worn and weary? She has comfort in her breast.
Art thou fallen? She can lift thee up, and to the illusion of thy sense gild defeat with triumph.
And thus woman rules the world. For her are wars; for her men spend their strength in gathering gains; for her they will do well and ill, and seek for greatness, to find oblivion. But she still sits like yonder Sphinx, and smiles; and no man has ever read all the riddle of her smile, or known all the mystery of her heart.”
When Napoleon came across the Sphinx, he was unaware of the momentous monument that lay beneath the sand. As women are shedding millennia of sand which has constricted their full display, we are now witnessing the magnificence and strength that is inherent in the female of our species.
I have written other articles discussing the power of the feminine such as Energize the Divine Feminine and Embrace Your Femininity. I also teach the Feminine Foundations Program which shows women how to step into their feminine power.
Let’s strike the term “The Weaker Sex” from our dictionaries. It speaks of oppression and discrimination.
Have do you feel about the term “The Weaker Sex”?
Share your experiences in the comments section below