Family, Sex and the Individual; Women's
Liberation, Feminism and Community

by Manfred Davidmann

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SUMMARY

The report investigates casual sex and its effects on individuals, family and community. It also investigates dominance and confrontation within the family and in the working environment, how men and women relate to each other, and the role of the family in bringing up children.

This report examines root causes of major social problems and shows how to resolve the problems by dealing with their basic causes.



CONTENTS

INTRODUCTION

ROLE OF THE FAMILY
How Human Beings Evolved
Role of the Family
Protecting and Caring for the Next Generation

SEXUAL RELATIONS
Sex and the Individual
Effect on Behaviour and Community
Sexual Restraint and Control

DOMINANCE
Dominance Within the Family
Living in a Hostile Environment

FAMILY'S ROLE AND LIFE IN THE REAL WORLD
The Family
Increasing Lifespans
Teamwork Within the Family

CONCLUSIONS


NOTES <..> AND REFERENCES {..}


Relevant Current and Associated Works

Relevant Subject Index Pages and Site Overview



INTRODUCTION

The report pulls together information from earlier reports and adds some important sections. The new material deals with how sex affects the individual, with sexual restraint and control, and with the evolution and current role of the family and of its members.

This report does not discuss the role or activities of Women's Liberation or Feminist movements but includes sections on fundamental aspects of family life, and of the role of women in family and society. In other words, it discusses the kind of aspects which underlie such movements and which these movements aim to change.

In this report are statements about effects on people, or how people respond, on how people behave, and so on. In all such cases it is understood that in every case there is a range of effects or behaviour from one end of a spectrum to the other, that what applies to one does not apply to another. So while the statements made in the report apply to a whole group or population, they cannot be said to apply to all individuals or to specific individuals.

But the effects I listed in the earlier publications now appear obvious and in the USA steps are being taken to halt and reverse the increasing corruption of their communities.



ROLE OF THE FAMILY


HOW HUMAN BEINGS EVOLVED

As far as we know the human brain evolved in three main stages {12}. Its ancient and primitive part is the innermost reptilian brain. Next evolved the mammalian brain by adding new functions and new ways of controlling the body. Then evolved the third part of the brain, the neocortex, the grey matter, the bulk of the brain in two symmetrical hemispheres, separate but communicating. To a considerable extent it is our neocortex which enables us to behave like human beings. {11}

Human emotional responses depend on neuronal pathways which link the right hemisphere to the mammalian brain which in turn is linked to the even older reptilian brain.

For human beings, primitive (reptilian) instinctive urges and behaviour are overlaid by mammalian care and affection for one's young and human care and affection for one's family and community. {11}

So the human brain includes a wide range of emotions, of feelings, of care and affection, and the capability for objective and logical thinking and evaluation.

Compared with most, if not all, other animals we also have much longer lifespans and it takes a long time before a human baby becomes an adult. Born after nine months in the mother's womb, followed by 4 to 5 years as infant, then 8 to 10 years as child being educated, and say 6 to 9 years as adolescent, about 18 to 25 years old when becoming an adult and independent member of the community.

There is a whole scale of behaviour from human to the beast-like, from behaviour based on affection for the other person to, at the other end, uncontrolled behaviour such as rape, and the seduction of the young which I see as another form of rape.

Mammalian and human parts of our brain control our reptilian ancestor's instinctive copulation urges {11}. It seems as if rapists and paedophiles do not restrain and control their bottom-level beast-like instincts, and it seems to be these which urge them on.

The instinctive sex urge aims to ensure the survival of the species. We have been able to adapt and advance by a process of natural selection and a key characteristic which distinguishes human beings from animals is that we can control the sex urge.


ROLE OF THE FAMILY

Something like 200 million years of evolution are behind us, from reptilian beast through mammalian animal to human being. Human beings are mammals and are unique in that our children need protecting and bringing up in a humane, emotionally and mentally stimulating environment for between 18 and 21 years, to enable them to mature into socially responsible adults {11}. Men and women co-operate with each other and look after each other and their children, within the family, to do just that.


So the role of the family is

To struggle as a family to survive.

To protect and support mother and children until children become mature and independent adults capable of providing for themselves.

To provide a good standard of living and a life of high quality. Which includes struggling against oppression and exploitation. And sometimes one has to fight to preserve a good way of life.

To serve the interests of, and to support, each member of the family. In turn, each member of the family supports the family.


Hence human beings work primarily for their family and members of a family stand by, support and help each other in times of need. The family is the basic unit of society and it looks after the interests of all its members, as individuals as well as collectively. This gives great strength to each member of the family in the struggle for daily bread, security and happiness.


PROTECTING AND CARING FOR THE NEXT GENERATION

There is a genetic difference between men and women. It is women who bear the child and who need protecting and looking after while bearing the child and after childbirth. There clearly are close emotional bonds between mother and child.

It is women who generally look after people, after the welfare and well-being of the members of the family. Care, concern, affection and love, feelings and emotions, are important and matter, and women developed, and have, much skill and expertise in such matters. It is generally men who struggle outside the family to secure survival and good living for the family. A struggle for survival in a seemingly hostile environment engineered by other humans.


Primarily the family exists to protect and support its young, and this means supporting and looking after the female bearing the child within her body, through birth and while she is protecting and teaching the young how to behave. It is usually the woman whose role it is to ensure the family provides the young with the humane, emotionally and mentally stimulating environment they need to enable them to mature into socially responsible adults. She is assisted in this by her spouse, depending on her needs and depending on his own work. But it is usually the woman who copes with the personal and emotional problems of the family's members and this is challenging, demanding and difficult work demanding social ability and skills as well as care, affection, understanding and concern for people.


In the kibbutzim, that is in Israel's co-operative settlements, children were brought up communally in age groups, away from their parents. One age group would progress together from creche to nursery and then to school, living together during the week and seeing their parents, or living with their parents, only at weekends.

This may have freed both parents for work and defence in the initial struggle for survival. But the practice was continued when successful, possibly to free women for work and so increase production. But it was done at the expense of the family.

Of any group in the country, the kibbutz children consequently showed the highest incidence of mental problems. The kibbutzim have had to backtrack and now give their children a more normal and strengthening family-life experience with their parents. {13}

When women are persuaded to regard work outside of the family as more important than caring for the young or the family's members, they are in effect handing over the family's key role to outsiders such as day-care businesses and television programme makers. With disastrous results on the way the young perceive home life and adult behaviour, tending to condition the young into behaving like fictional and unreal role models, for example concerning sexual behaviour. Instead of gaining an adult understanding of the reality of living, of family values and relationships, instead of understanding and experiencing socially-responsible behaviour caring for and living with other people, instead of seeing adults (parents) behave in socially responsible way struggling in a hostile environment to do the best they can for the young and for each other.

The number of young people who run away from home and family, often becoming homeless, placing themselves at a big disadvantage right at the beginning of their lives, speaks for itself.


The family needs food and shelter and while the female looks after its young and its people, it is usually the male who struggles outside the immediate family to provide it with an income, with a standard of living, to the best of his ability {4, 5}. He is assisted in this when required by his spouse to an extent which depends on her own work within the family. He struggles outside the family to provide it with a good life against those who wish to profit from the family's needs, against those who wish to exploit, who may even wish to oppress so as to exploit.



SEXUAL RELATIONS


SEX AND THE INDIVIDUAL

Sex is habit-forming and addictive but can be controlled when the will is there, when the individual is motivated to control it.

Young people are persuaded to have sex for the first time, are seduced, by those who crave for sex regardless of the cost to the young person being misused by being seduced. The cost to the young can be great. The earlier the age of seduction, the more ingrained is the habit, the greater the difficulties of later controlling it.

Having sex for the first time, first intercourse between adults, is a deeply emotional experience which binds people together in a strong bond of care and affection for each other. That is why 'men wish to sleep around but wish to marry virgins', or a succession of virgins if they are rich enough to afford the divorces.

Should the lovers separate, the emotional cost for the seduced is high indeed. Desperate feelings of isolation, loneliness, betrayal. Shock. Almost unbearable. Reluctance to commit oneself again.

With the next relationship there is still commitment, care and affection but more reserved, there is reluctance to commit oneself completely, to commit one's emotions completely, so as to avoid the pain of separation if this should occur again.

After repeated separations, there is little or no emotional commitment or care for the other person. Sex is casual, the individual sleeps around, attempting to gain the pleasure sex can bring. Looking for sex regardless of thought or feelings or care for the other person, regardless of the cost to the other person.


It appears to be well known that those who engage in sexual relations outside marriage find themselves looking in vain for the affection which is missing to an ever-greater extent from their relationships, become less and less able to commit themselves to the other person, mean ever less to each other.

So people who are aware of the likely consequences tend consciously to refrain from promiscuous relationships. When unaware of the consequences, people tend intuitively to put on the brake when tempted to behave promiscuously.


EFFECT ON BEHAVIOUR AND COMMUNITY

Some men are persuaded into sleeping around, in turn attempting to persuade women to make themselves available for casual sex. When women were persuaded to make themselves sexually available they relaxed the control which had kept in check the primitive instinctive urge to copulate. Women had protected society by their chastity, had by their chastity compelled men to support and look after the mother (his wife) and their children while support was needed while the young were developing into adults, had protected and maintained the family and the community in this way.

Casual sex weakens and deadens feelings of care and affection for the other person, for partner or spouse, changing feelings of care and affection into a desire to use others for selfish pleasure regardless of the cost to the other person. So people who sleep around, who are addicted to casual sex, use other people to obtain sex, do so without concern or affection for their partners. They may then begin to behave in ways which harm other people, and may begin to pursue their own selfish interests. Apathy and neglect towards others can result.

Society corrupts itself when human care, affection and concern for one's own family, and for other people, is weakened, is bypassed by self-interest at expense of others.

There is increasing wanton antisocial behaviour such as vandalism and mugging. There is a loss of internal security, by loss of property and by attack against the person. The quality of life is lowered even further by those who pursue personal gain regardless of its cost to other people.

All this was clear in the seventies:

In all countries where sex education has been introduced the same corruptive pattern of social change has been observed {3}: sexual experimentation starts and promiscuity increases. Promiscuity leads to increasing sexual dissatisfaction, to the weakening of family life and marriage bonds and to sexual excesses. The substitute satisfactions of smoking, drinking, and drug-taking increase and there is a lowering of the age of those involved. There is an upsurge in wanton destructive aggression in the community and a rise in aggressive juvenile delinquency. There is increasing concern over the harm done on young children by the practices and by the lack of concern and commitment of their parents, and concern has already been expressed over increasing male impotence. These effects are now obvious to any intelligent reader of the informed press.

... Increasing divorce rates, the resultant delinquency of children, the casual and inhuman ways some parents treat each other and their children, are almost the direct outcome of pre-marital and adulterous, that is promiscuous, sexual relations.

Destructive aggression, viciousness and brutality of people towards each other, disregard of the value of the individual and of life itself, are not normal behaviour. People who behave in such ways become isolated and divided against each other.

Women and men may then use sex as a way of getting what they want from their partner, as a way of dominating the partner. While unlikely to be stated in such simple terms between them, their actions convey the message 'do what I want and you can have sex as a reward. Obstruct me or refuse to do what I want and I will not have sex with you' which is a kind of punishment. We see assertiveness and conflict instead of affection and co-operation.


Partnerships and marriages break up when difficulties arise. People leave without regard or concern for the interests of the other members, of partner, spouse or children. They leave when they would be better off alone, when there is illness, when their present partner becomes unemployed, when a younger or wealthier 'partner' becomes available.

People who behave promiscuously (permissively) have sexual relations before marriage, or after marriage with a person other than their spouse. Promiscuity turns men against women, and women against men, and robs both of the support of their family.

Let me put it to you in another way {2}. It is only a few years ago that you went out for the evening without bothering to lock the door. Nowadays you make sure you fasten the windows as well and in some areas keep a light on and the radio going. Just think of what has been happening to crime, delinquency, drug addiction, the younger age of those involved and the increasingly brutal way people treat each other, leaving aside dishonest business dealings. Look at the increasing number of divorces and thus of one-parent families, look at the even larger number of children being brought up in this way. ... it is happening in other democratic countries. And it is nothing new. It has happened again and again. Whenever democracy raised its head, the same knife was used to chop it off.

History shows that free societies which allow themselves to become 'permissive' (promiscuous) weaken themselves to the point where their civilisation destroys itself, or is destroyed by outsiders. Those who wish to weaken democracy condone or encourage 'permissiveness'. On the other hand, those who restrict sex to within marriage gain creativity and increase their strength.


SEXUAL RESTRAINT AND CONTROL

It is control of the sexual urge which distinguishes human beings from animals. Promiscuous unrestrained sexual behaviour indicates cold inhuman, often harsh, behaviour towards others, is characteristic of the cold unemotional behaviour of those who exploit others. Sexual self-control and restraint indicates human caring behaviour.

As permissiveness has increased so we have seen increasing the number of people using others for their own gratification and pleasure without care or concern for them, and also the number of parents behaving brutally towards each other and their children. A process driven by those who want sexual gratification, knowingly or unknowingly without regard to the costs their 'partners' have to pay.

Basic is that people behave in a way which enables them to trust and assist each other, that men and women co-operate with each other in a way which will protect and strengthen both, behaving in a way which ensures that all benefit from gains made.

So within a family, between husband and wife, it is the other person who comes first. When each spouse tries to make the other spouse happy, when each will go without something so as to make the other happy, then both can be happy.

Consider Jewish family law and traditions. When the wife has her period she is considered to be emotionally fragile. So the husband refrains from having sex from a few days before her period starts until a few days after it stops. He refrains out of care, consideration and affection for her, for his wife. She is different, has different needs, his self-denial for her sake continually renews the bonds of affection between them. As does their mutual practice of supporting each other, of putting the other person first when it comes to satisfying each other's needs. Whether or not you agree with the reasoning, sexual control is practised regularly for the sake of the other person and this strengthens the individual and cements the marriage.

Sexual restraint is an exercise in self-control, in controlling and so modifying what in the reptilian-animal part of our brain is a primitive and powerful urge aimed at the survival of the species. Sexual restraint changes it from an animal's instinctive behaviour into human behaviour based on concern and affection for the welfare of others. Not easy to do but it can be done as bereaved spouses or discarded partners can testify. Addiction to casual sex, to sleeping around, to promiscuity, is difficult to control but it can be done and the gains to the person doing so are enormous.

The United States government in 1997 set aside USD 250 million to teach children sexual abstinence, "teaching the social, psychological, and health gains to be realised by abstaining from sexual activity", teaching "abstinence from sexual activity outside marriage as the expected standard for all school-age children". {10}

Restraining and controlling sexual urges by restricting sex to within marriage gives strength to the family, to the individual and to the community, and underlies success in the struggle for a higher standard of living and higher quality of life for each and all.



DOMINANCE


DOMINANCE WITHIN THE FAMILY

Within the family we should see co-operation and teamwork between equals who divide up the work which has to be done between them in a functional way so that each becomes expert and effective in his or her part of what has to be done.

But on the whole a family's income is usually earned by the male and income and money pass through his hands to the family. He then may, if he so wishes, use this controlling position to dominate the female. This applies equally well to the female who is a breadwinner, who may then use her controlling position to dominate. And applies also when the income of one is much larger than that of the other.


And both are in the position to use sex as a means of dominating the other, if they so wish. Rewarding compliance with sex, punishing disagreement by withholding sex.


Women have at times been persuaded by traditions or beliefs into accepting domination and sometimes exploitation as the norm. And women have in the past been denied education and full equality with men within the family and in the community in which they live.


The words 'assertiveness' and 'asserting' are used at times to indicate that one person is attempting to dominate the other. Dominating and 'asserting' put one person's personal gain, likes, dislikes against the other person's interests, introduces conflict and competition into what should be co-operation and teamwork.


Considering only women and children, the family protects women and children while children grow to maturity, till children become independent adults. It also protects women from disadvantages resulting from caring for and looking after the family during this period.

What keeps the family in place and gives it strength is restricting sex to within marriage. Men are then motivated to marry, to provide and care for wife and children, and themselves gain much strength from doing so.

When women are persuaded to make themselves available for sex outside marriage they help to dismantle not only their own protection and security but also that of their children.

In such circumstances the selfish instinctive behaviour of the non-feeling primitive animal is asserting itself, is attempting to dominate, overcome and control human feeling of care, affection, concern for members of one's own family and for other people in human societies.


LIVING IN A HOSTILE ENVIRONMENT

We have seen that when one member of a family dominates others, that competition, conflict and struggle replace co-operation and teamwork. All the family's members suffer as a result.

We know that dominating does not work in normal circumstances. Authoritarian organisations are much less effective than participative ones. In authoritarian organisations morale is low, people cease to care and tend to work against each other instead of co-operating with each other for the benefit of the organisation. Which applies equally well to a family. {7, 8}


In the working environment women are just as oppressed and exploited as men are. When women receive lower wages for work of equal value then this is bad for men and women alike. When some people in a group are being underpaid, the pay of the others is being pushed down.


Outside the family a struggle is taking place. The breadwinner is competing for work and income on behalf of the family. He is also struggling against those who wish to exploit him (and thus his family) and who oppress so as to exploit.

So outside the family we see a widespread struggle against those who wish to dominate other people. Against those who want primitive power over others, against those who wish to exploit, against those who may brutally and without feeling oppress human beings so as to exploit them. And 'to exploit' includes the whole range of antisocial decisions and activities of those who put profit before people and community. {6}


We also saw that on the whole it is men who earn the family's income which then often passes through their hands to the family. And that as a result of the work men do outside the family, it is largely men who gain controlling positions in the working environment.

So on the surface it may seem as if it is men who try to dominate women within the family, that it is men who oppress and exploit women in the working environment.

Anyone who sees men and women co-operating with each other within a family, struggling side by side, back to back, and sees them co-operating with each other and helping each other in the outside working environment, for a more secure and better life for their families, knows how strong and effective they are together.

Blaming men as such, within the family and outside it, when women are oppressed and exploited, amounts to putting women against men, to separating them from each other. A 'divide so as to conquer' process which weakens both in their joint struggle for a better life. It robs men of the support of their families when they are struggling outside the family against being exploited, it robs women of the support of their families while bringing up children to adulthood, when improving their skills or knowledge when returning to work or to improve the quality of their lives.


Dominance and oppression take place within and outside the family, against men and women alike. Both men and women are exploited and oppressed in the working environment to a very considerable degree.


What we see in the working environment is a world-wide struggle to achieve a humane way of life, each person, family or community struggling to advance at their own level of development, struggling against those who wish to dominate, exploit, oppress. A struggle whose successful outcome depends on trustful co-operation, companionship and teamwork. {4, 5}


Sometimes one has to fight to preserve a good way of life, to prevent others from taking what has been achieved, or one is expected to fight on behalf of those who dominate and exploit.

The fighting is usually done by men who are conditioned to fight, maim and kill. Their training weakens and bypasses humane emotions of care, concern and affection for other people, in effect tends to brutalise them.

And we now see in some countries women joining the armed forces, police and security organisations and being trained in somewhat similar ways.


Our primitive animal ancestors behaved instinctively. Hunt for food, kill or be killed, fight or flee, copulate, care for own young for a very short and limited period. Self before others, regardless of needs of others, marking out and defending territory. Later mammals tend to have feelings, care and affection for their young. Human beings think as well as feel, and care for and look after their young for many years.

So conditioning to fight, maim and kill amounts to a throwback to primitive animal behaviour, to behaviour which puts self before others. A throwback to beast-like behaviour for those who attack, to beast-like behaviour to counter beast-like behaviour for those who defend.

But only some people behave in such corrupted ways. There are those many who put people first, who know the difference between human and inhuman behaviour, who believe in participative behaviour and in democratic government.


We saw that casual sex dehumanises, that it blocks affection and increases cold and selfish behaviour against others, that society corrupts itself when promiscuity (casual sex) spreads.

Promiscuity attacks human beings in their struggle for a better life as it:

  1. Conditions people into primitive selfish uncaring behaviour which uses other people for personal gain (pleasure), creating a non-caring society, putting people against each other, at times brutalising them.

  2. Weakens the family and all its members and so adversely affects the young and the way people treat each other. It weakens all the family's members by robbing them of emotional and economic support, and so makes it easier to exploit them through their needs.

Those who behave promiscuously pay a heavy price, namely lose the ability to form a satisfying emotionally deeply binding lasting and shared relationship with one other person. They also lose the emotional strength and economic backup such a shared relationship brings.


The media seem to be concentrating on portraying superstition, violence and casual-sex behaviour as acceptable, so strengthening primitive uncaring and antisocial behaviour towards others. And images penetrate deeply into the human mind.

Sexually explicit and pornographic material would seem to be taking this process even further.

So media are at present persuading and conditioning people into thinking that antisocial behaviour will not have unpleasant consequences. However, the cost to the community of the kind of negative and antisocial behaviour outlined in the sections above, of the lowering of the quality of life, is enormous. {6}

What we see is an almost intentional-seeming conditioning towards antisocial behaviour which breaks up families and so weakens individuals, and which divides people against each other and so weakens them even further.

It looks as if men are being conditioned into opting out of their responsibilities for family, wife and children. Women, on the other hand, are apparently being conditioned into giving away the real support and security they and their children could expect from husband and family, for no real gain.


To answer the question: "Who encourages antisocial behaviour?" we need to ask: "Who benefits from antisocial behaviour?" {6}

So who profits from promiscuity? At first glance it would seem that manufacturers of contraceptives and contraceptive devices have a vested interest as have organisations or associations whose income is derived from selling contraceptives and contraceptive devices. And possibly those whose income depends on advising on the use and application of contraceptives, depending on the extent to which their income depends on this.


And it is those who wish to weaken democracy and freedom who could be expected to condone and thus permit and encourage promiscuous behaviour as promiscuous behaviour separates people and turns them against each other, as it turns men against women and women against men. Indeed, they will condone and encourage any movement which turns men and women against each other so as to rob both of the strength to resist oppression and exploitation, to rob both of the strength which comes from men and women co-operating with each other.


Human rights are based on controlling primitive dominant behaviour, on concern, care and affection for our young, our families, for people, for our communities, and express themselves in co-operation and teamwork between men and women to achieve a good life of high quality.

Men and women are struggling together to achieve a better life, a humane way of living and government, and social security.

And there are ways of teaching social responsibility, of teaching the young how to take responsibility for others, how to care for, work with and look after other people. Social responsibility, the caring, giving and sharing with others, the taking on of responsibility for others including conflict management, can be and is being taught. {14}

It is in democracies that high standards of living have been achieved. In democracies people can struggle openly for a better life but we see that what has been gained has to be defended and extended.



FAMILY'S ROLE AND LIFE IN THE REAL WORLD


THE FAMILY

The family is the basic unit of society. Its strength depends on the ability of the partners to commit themselves to each other, that is its strength depends on those who restrict sexual relations to within marriage. Men and women who do so practice a form of self-control which enables them to form a deep and lasting relationship, which in turn lays the basis for happy and contented family life for themselves and their children. The relationship between them is based on mutual trust and respect arising from the sure knowledge that they are in a vital exclusive relationship to each other, that they are working and co-operating with each other for the common good of themselves and their children.

Human beings work primarily for their family and members of a family stand by, support and help each other in times of need.

Smash the family and you undermine the strength of the people. I understand the resulting disruption was so marked in Russia that they had to back-pedal. One of the first things the Khmer Rouge did in Cambodia was to smash the family to make the people dependent on the state.

It is tough when you have to go to work to earn the money, do the shopping, look after the kids and do everything yourself. The one thing you cannot afford to be is to be ill. And you have no time for the kids either. And in a one-parent family, what the children miss is the parent's caring co-operative behaviour, is the example of responsible people looking after each other. The boy being brought up by the mother knows that both of them were left to look after themselves by the father and that is not a good example to model himself on. If you are struggling on your own so as to survive you don't have time or energy to think of freedom or to work for the community or for the betterment of humankind. {2}

Each member of the family gets strength from the others. Two heads are better than one, and work divided between two people in such a way that each can become expert in his or her own area is done much better than one person trying to do it all. The family gives people enormous emotional and economic strength to overcome life's problems. Husband and wife battle on together back-to-back and they do so successfully regardless of how tough the struggle may be. You cannot win all the battles but what cements the relationship is not just battles won but battles fought together. The depth of such a relationship between husband and wife and the wealth of strength it gives regardless of the opposition, this you know as well as I do. The children follow the example of their parents, gain the same strength and pass it on. It all depends on deep and secure emotional involvement between two people, between husband and wife. {2}

Those who understand its effects know that when sex is restrained and controlled, it performs the enormously important function of creating a special single deep emotional relationship between two people which gives them the strength to overcome life's problems, to form a strong family unit which serves and protects all its members. To be strong the relationship has to be unique and secure. It depends on the ability of the partners to commit themselves to each other. The depth of such a relationship between husband and wife can be appreciated as one sees them both battling on together successfully regardless of how tough the struggle may be.


INCREASING LIFESPANS

Tabulating the figures already mentioned and extending the time period to the end of life, key events <1> look something like this:

Length of Period Age Period Event
(Years) (Years of Age)    
       
4 - 5   Infant  
8 - 10   Child  
6 - 9   Adolescent  
       
  18 - 21   Becoming an adult member of family and community.
  25   Adult and independent member of family and community.
       
  18 - 24   Single
  20 - 26   Marriage (Children born over period of 6 years)
  41 - 47   Children become adults
  75 - 80   Death


Simplifying this a little, we have:


Age Event or Period
(Years of age)  
   
0 - 21 Childhood and adolescence
21 - 23 Adult and single
23 Marriage
23 - 33 Children's childhood
33 - 44 Children's adolescence
44 Children now adult and largely independent
78 Life ends


Only about 100 years ago in the developed countries a person's lifespan was about 45 years, just long enough to bring up the next generation and help them to find their feet in the community. We now live another 35 years or so which enables us to do much more with our lives after our children have become independent. And our lives now look something like this:


Age Event or Period
(Years of age)  
   
Working outside the family (largely men)
21 - 65 At work
65 - 78 Receiving pension, freed from having to work
   
Within family (largely women)
21 - 23 At work
23 Marriage
23 - 33 Bringing up the children during their childhood
33 - 44 Looking after children during their adolescence
44 - 65 At home or at work, as needed or as the individual wishes
65 - 78 Receiving pension, free from having to work


We saw earlier that the needs of children to be provided with caring and affectionate family life is of overriding importance <2>.

But outstanding is that those looking after people within the family, now have about 20 years of active life which can be spent as they wish, either working outside the family in paid employment, as independent professionals, or serving the community in other ways.


It is not easy to return to paid work as a professional after years of absence looking after one's family. After such a time lapse much has been forgotten and knowledge, equipment and techniques will have changed. And what is missing on returning to professional work is the years of experience which would have been gained had one stayed at work. It is then more than likely that positions of greater responsibility, and promotion to higher levels, will not be gained by those who return to work after such a long absence.

So on returning to work, women are at a disadvantage because of the time spent bringing up the children, and this disadvantage is likely to lower the level at which they can find work or work for the rest of their active life.

The family compensates women for this life-long contribution towards the upbringing of the children. It is the role of the spouse, of the husband, to continue to provide for the family. A life-long contribution from him which means she does not lose out for the rest of her life because she stayed at home to look after the children, the husband's input into the family balancing her input of bringing up the children and looking after the family's members.


As the children grow older, say 14 years old, women can usually spend increasing amounts of time updating or learning and developing skills and abilities for their future or continuing work after the children have grown up. Which is not easy to do and needs the support of her spouse.

Women, after children have grown up and backed by the family, can choose work outside the family to fulfil themselves as pay is less important for a second income.

Much professional work can now be home based. Home working may be less rewarding but is more convenient. Much can be gained by husband supporting his wife as far as he is able.


Looking at life from point of view of one's career, that is from the point of view of those who believe in profiting by compelling people through need to work for less than a fair share of the added value they produce, amounts to sacrificing the interests of one's family, and thus of oneself. The employer profits at the expense of the social and human welfare of the family's members.

What we see outside the family is a pattern of differentials which rewards service to the owners and their establishment rather than ability or service to the community. The nurse, the fire-fighter, the police officer and the teacher are at present paid comparatively little for the work they do. {1}


The community's basic needs are often not met by an uncaring social environment and the community's well-being depends on people, generally women, who use whatever time they have available, for caring for people both within and outside of family life. An employer's profit-orientated work can be well paid, community service-orientated work is not. And it is largely women who, caring for the welfare of the community, are generally the prime movers in self-help, support, protest and pressure groups, pushing forward also with other social and welfare issues.

Such work and public demonstrations and protests on such issues, are now an essential survival mechanism under beginning-of-twentyfirst-century conditions. {6}


Women's work in family and society determines individual emotional strength and well-being, the quality of life and the welfare of people as a community, and needs to be recognised and acknowledged.


TEAMWORK WITHIN THE FAMILY

Teamwork implies sharing work and responsibilities in a way which ensures that all that has to be done is done well.

Success is measured by social and mental well-being as well as by standard of living and quality of life, of the family as a whole and of each member.

Key feature of the whole system is that both spouses work for the benefit of their family, of its individual members, and beyond that for the larger community of which the family is a part.

All are equal as people. What has to be done is shared out between them according to individual skill, ability, knowledge and experience. And in the end all share equally in the family's gains and losses. In other words, all are equal, contribute to the best of their ability, and stand or fall together.


The relationship between the two spouses is a functional relationship {9} and functional relationships are often misunderstood and misrepresented.

The spouses share out between themselves what needs to be done, each specialising, concentrating on, areas of work in accordance with their abilities, knowledge, understanding, likes and dislikes of each.

Equal as people, each takes the decisions falling within their own area of competence and responsibility. The husband may decide which car is to be bought or about getting a new job, the wife about which school the children should go to or where the family should live. But each discusses matters with the other family members before deciding from the point of view of what is best for the family as a whole.

They do not waste their time competing with each other but add their knowledge and experience to the decision-taking process of the other. In general, the person who decides would be the one most competent to take such decisions.

Such a functional division of work and responsibilities, of co-operation and teamwork between experts, enables us to survive and do well in the dangerous environment in which we find ourselves.

Consider shopping for food. The shopping expert takes into account the likes and dislikes of the other members of the family. And the expertise involved in shopping can be appreciated by considering what has to be thought about while shopping. How fresh is the food, how long will it have to be stored at home, how much does it cost here compared with elsewhere, has it been genetically modified and what does this mean for us. And what about nitrates in water, heavy metals, herbicides, pesticides, irradiated foods, chemical additives, more expensive organic foods, fat and sugar contents and other health risks.

It would be a waste of time for each to become expert in this field. It would be useless for each of the two people to do so and to argue continually about what is to be done. They would in this way be competing with each other by attempting to show that one is better than the other.



CONCLUSIONS

This report deals with the root causes of the major social problems. It shows how to resolve the problems by dealing with their basic causes.


Family and Children

200 million years of evolution are behind us, from reptilian beast through mammalian animal to human being. Human beings are mammals and we are unique in that our children need protecting and bringing up in a humane, emotionally and mentally stimulating environment for between 18 and 25 years, to enable them to mature into socially responsible adults. Men and women co-operate with each other and look after each other and their children, within the family, to achieve this.

Hence human beings work primarily for their family and members of a family stand by, support and help each other in times of need. The family is the basic unit of society and it looks after the interests of all its members, as individuals as well as collectively. This gives great strength to each member of the family in the struggle for daily bread, security and happiness.


Men and Women

Co-operation between men and women, within the family and as equals, would seem to be essential when bringing up their children under modern conditions of rapid change at an accelerating rate of change.

It is women who generally look after the young and other family members as people. This is the key role within the family and it occupies women full-time for some years if it is to be done well, and for more years on an at least part-time basis.

But we live much longer and the time spent full-time at home looking after the family places women at a disadvantage when returning to work outside the family after the children have been brought up. So women need to be supported when returning to work.

The family compensates women for this life-long contribution towards the upbringing of the children. It is the role of the spouse, of the husband, to continue to provide for the family. A life-long contribution from him which means she does not lose out for the rest of her life because she stayed at home to look after the children, the husband's input into the family balancing her input of bringing up the children and looking after the family's members.


Women, after children have grown up and with the family's backing, can choose work outside the family to fulfil themselves as pay is less important for a second income.

It is largely women who, caring for the welfare of the community, are generally the prime movers in self-help, support, protest and pressure groups, pushing forward also with other social and welfare issues.

Such work and public demonstrations and protests on such issues, are now an essential survival mechanism under beginning-of-twentyfirst-century conditions.


The work women do in family and society determines individual emotional strength and well-being, the quality of life and the welfare of people as a community and needs to be recognised and acknowledged.


The report discusses in some detail what is required if husband and wife are to work together as an effective team within the family.


Casual Sex

Casual sex is addictive, weakens and deadens feelings of care and affection for the other person, for partner or spouse, changing feelings of care and affection into a desire to use others for selfish pleasure regardless of the cost to the other person.

So people who sleep around, who are addicted to casual sex, use other people to obtain sex, do so without concern or affection for their partners. Apathy and neglect towards others can result.

Society corrupts itself when human care, affection and concern for one's own family, and for other people, is weakened, is bypassed by self-interest at the expense of others.


Those who sleep around pay a heavy price, namely lose the ability to form a satisfying emotionally deeply binding lasting and shared relationship with one other person. They also lose the emotional strength and economic backup such a shared relationship brings. Promiscuity turns men against women, and women against men, and robs both of the support of their family.

In such ways promiscuity breaks up families, weakens the strength of individuals and thus of the community to resist exploitation and oppression. So it would seem to be those who wish to weaken democracy and freedom who condone and thus permit and encourage promiscuous behaviour.


What keeps the family in place and gives it strength is restricting sex to within marriage. Men are then motivated to marry, to provide and care for wife and children, and themselves gain much strength from doing so. When women are persuaded to make themselves available for sex outside marriage they help to dismantle not only their own protection and security but also that of their children.


A key characteristic which distinguishes human beings from animals is that we can control the sex urge. Sex is habit-forming and addictive but can be controlled when the will is there, when the individual is motivated to control it.


In the USA steps are being taken to halt and reverse the increasing corruption of their communities by teaching the young the gains to be achieved by abstaining from sexual activity outside marriage.

There are ways of teaching social responsibility, of teaching the young how to take responsibility for others, how to care for, work with and look after other people. Social responsibility, the caring, giving and sharing with others, the taking on of responsibility for others including conflict management, can be and is being taught.


Dominance, Oppression and Exploitation

When one member of a family dominates others, then competition, conflict and struggle replace co-operation and teamwork. Dominance weakens all the family's members, robbing them of emotional and economic support, and so makes it easier to exploit them through their needs. All the family's members suffer as a result.

In the working environment we see a world-wide struggle to achieve a humane way of life, each family, person or community struggling to advance at their own level of development, struggling against those who wish to dominate, exploit, oppress. A struggle whose successful outcome depends on trustful co-operation, companionship and teamwork.

We know that dominating does not work in normal circumstances. Authoritarian organisations are much less effective than participative ones. In authoritarian organisations morale is low, people cease to care and tend to work against each other instead of co-operating with each other for the benefit of the organisation. Which applies equally well to a family.


Promiscuous behaviour and casual sexual relationships separate people and turn them against each other, turn men against women and women against men. Promiscuous behaviour and casual sexual relationships break up families, isolate people and rob people of the strength to resist exploitation and oppression.

So it appears that it is those who wish to weaken democracy and freedom who could be expected to condone and thus permit and encourage promiscuous behaviour and casual relationships.


Strength to resist oppression and exploitation comes from men and women co-operating with each other and so men and women struggle together to achieve a better life, a humane way of living and of government, and social security.

Human rights are based on controlling primitive dominating behaviour, on concern, care and affection for our young and our families, for people and for our communities. Human rights express themselves in co-operation and teamwork between men and women to achieve a good life of high quality.

It is in democracies that a high standard of living has been achieved. In democracies people can struggle openly for a better life but we see that what has been gained has to be defended and extended.



NOTES AND REFERENCES


NOTES

<1>    

See section on 'How Human Beings Evolved'.

For more background, see section on 'Development of Brain Functions in Humans' in reference {11}.

     
<2>  

See section 'Protecting and Caring for the Next Generation'.

The kibbutzim in Israel brought up children communally, away from their parents, and had to backtrack when they became aware of the consequences {13}.


REFERENCES

{ 1}     Work and Pay
http://www.solhaam.org/
Manfred Davidmann
     
{ 2}   If You Want a Future, Read On ...
David Baram
Social Organisation Limited
     
{ 3}   Sex:
Louise W. Eickoff
Consultant Psychiatrist
Guardian, 1970 Sep 12
     
{ 4}   The Will to Work: What People Struggle to Achieve.
http://www.solhaam.org/
Manfred Davidmann
     
{ 5}   Motivation Summary
http://www.solhaam.org/
Manfred Davidmann
     
{ 6}   Social Responsibility, Profits and Social Accountability.
http://www.solhaam.org/
Manfred Davidmann
     
{ 7}   Role of Managers Under Different Styles of Management
http://www.solhaam.org/
Manfred Davidmann
     
{ 8}   Style of Management and Leadership.
http://www.solhaam.org/
Manfred Davidmann
     
{ 9}   Organising
http://www.solhaam.org/
Manfred Davidmann
     
{10}   Abstinence conundrum
Tamar Lewin
Guardian, 13/05/97
     
{11}   How the Human Brain Developed and How the Human Mind Works
http://www.solhaam.org/
Manfred Davidmann
     
{12}   A Triune Concept of the Brain and Behaviour
P D MacLean
University of Toronto Press
     
{13}   Kibbutzim
http://www.solhaam.org/
Manfred Davidmann
     
{14}   To Give or Not To Give
'Everyman' TV documentary
Editor: Jane Drabble; Producer: Angela Kaye
Broadcast on 5/1/92 by BBC 1
Based on book 'The Altruistic Person' by Professor Sam Oliner


Relevant Current and Associated Works

Other relevant current and associated reports by Manfred Davidmann:
     
     
Title   Description
     
How the Human Brain Developed and How the Human Mind Works   Describes clearly what happens while sleeping, role of dreaming, meaning of dreams. Functioning of the two halves of the human brain is related to the autonomic nervous and the immune systems. Shows how human behaviour is affected by primitive instincts. See 'Press Notices'.
     
Motivation Summary   Reviews and summarises past work in Motivation. Provides a clear definition of 'motivation', of the factors which motivate and of what people are striving to achieve. See 'Press Notices'.
     
The Will to Work: What People Struggle to Achieve   Major review, analysis and report about motivation and motivating. Covers remuneration and job satisfaction as well as the factors which motivate. Develops a clear definition of 'motivation'. Lists what people are striving and struggling to achieve, and progress made, in corporations, communities, countries.
     
Style of Management and Leadership     Major review and analysis of the style of management and its effect on management effectiveness, decision taking and standard of living. Measures of style of management and government. See 'Press Notices'.
     
Role of Managers Under Different Styles of Management     Short summary of the role of managers under authoritarian and participative styles of management. Also covers decision taking and the basic characteristics of each style.
     
Organising   Comprehensive review. Outstanding is the section on functional relationships. Shows how to improve co-ordination, teamwork and co-operation. Discusses the role and responsibilities of managers in different circumstances.
     
Exporting and Importing of Employment and Unemployment   Discusses exporting and importing of employment and unemployment, underlying principles, effect of trade, how to reduce unemployment, social costs of unemployment, community objectives, support for enterprises, socially irresponsible enterprise behaviour. See 'Press Notices'.
     
Work and Pay   Major review and analysis of work and pay in relation to employer, employee and community. Provides the underlying knowledge and understanding for scientific determination and prediction of rates of pay, remuneration and differentials, of National Remuneration Scales and of the National Remuneration Pattern of pay and differentials.
     
What People are Struggling Against: How Society is Organised for Controlling and Exploiting People   Report of study undertaken to find out why people have to struggle throughout their adult lives, in all countries, organisations and levels, to maintain and improve their standard of living and quality of life. Reviews what people are struggling against.
     
Social Responsibility, Profits and Social Accountability   Incidents, disasters and catastrophes are here put together as individual case studies and reviewed as a whole. We are facing a sequence of events which are increasing in frequency, severity and extent. There are sections about what can be done about this, on community aims and community leadership, on the world-wide struggle for social accountability.
     
The Right to Strike   Discusses and defines the right to strike, the extent to which people can strike and what this implies. Also discussed are aspects of current problems such as part-time work and home working, Works Councils, uses and misuses of linking pay to a cost-of-living index, participation in decision-taking, upward redistribution of income and wealth.
     
Co-operatives and Co-operation: Causes of Failure, Guidelines for Success   Based on eight studies of co-operatives and mutual societies, the report's conclusions and recommendations cover fundamental and practical problems of co-ops and mutual societies, of members, of direction, of management and control. There are extensive sections on Style of Management, decision-taking, management motivation and performance, on General Management principles and their application in practice.
     
Using Words to Communicate Effectively   Shows how to communicate more effectively, covering aspects of thinking, writing, speaking and listening as well as formal and informal communications. Consists of guidelines found useful by university students and practising middle and senior managers.

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Relevant Subject Index Pages


Other Subjects; Other Publications

The Site Overview page has links to all individual Subject Index Pages which between them list the works by Manfred Davidmann which are available on the Internet, with short descriptions and links for downloading.

To see the Site Overview page, click Overview

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Copyright    ©    Manfred Davidmann    1998, 2006
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History
18/03/98 Completed
16/04/98 To Home Page