A few weeks ago I started reading Catherine Mayer’s Attack of the 50ft. Women (inspired by the Guilty Feminist’s fundraising event for the WEP) and it’s an absolutely brilliant book so far, that’s given me so much to think about.
That, coupled with one of the most recent instalments of The Conversation that just popped up in my phone – a fascinating BBC World Service that pairs up two very different women around the world who have something big in common – gave me plenty to think about.
Today’s episode of The Conversation paired a former lawyer from Singapore, Choo Waihong and a German photographer, Karolin Klüppel, who shared their experiences of spending time with two of the few matriarchal and matrilineal societies in the world: the Khasi in India and the Mosuo in China.
What stood out for me (especially as I study diversity and inclusion) is that although women seemingly benefitted from the power and the empowerment, men lost out. When the chair, Kim Chakanetsa asked about the downsides Klüppel replied ‘Men and women don’t have equal rights and this causes problems like for every society.’ And unfortunately enough these women are still confined to conservative lives, taking care of children and earning less than men.
Inequality actually doesn’t benefit anyone.