Donate Donations can be made through the Center for Partnership donate page, located here. Because of your support, programs such as our Caring Economy Campaign CEC , our Leadership and Learning online courses, and our Spiritual Alliance to Stop Intimate Violence provide tools to change agents, policy makers, and people worldwide. A partnership society offers us a viable alternative. A better future is possible — and is in fact firmly rooted in the haunting drama of what actually happened in our past.
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Partnership politics — from intimate to international A Progressive Family Policy Agenda It is time for progressives to reframe the political conversation about family values and have an integrated progressive family policy agenda. Progressives have ceded the meaning of family life to regressives, who recognize the foundational importance of family and other intimate relations in the establishment of social values and political and economic structures.
Family relations affect how people think and act. They affect how people vote and govern, and whether the policies they support are just and genuinely democratic, or punitive, violent, and oppressive. Regressives have successfully pushed our culture back by insisting that a male-dominated, top-down structure of family is the only desirable one. This is the fundamentalist theocratic model of society for our future — and we see the horrors it brings by looking at Eastern fundamentalist regimes.
Progressive candidates can start by changing the terms of the debate: 1. Link family-friendly business and government policies with a strong competitive workforce. For more information, see www. Candles, music, flowers, and wine — these we all know are the stuff of romance, of sex and of love. But candles, flowers, music, and wine are also the stuff of religious ritual, of our most sacred rites.
Why is there this striking, though seldom noted, commonality? Is it just accidental that passion is the word we use for both sexual and mystical experiences? Or is there here some long forgotten but still powerful connection? Could it be that the yearning of so many women and men for sex as something beautiful and magical is our long repressed impulse toward a more spiritual, and at the same time more intensely passionate, way of expressing sex and love? Because we have been taught to think of sex as sinful, dirty, titillating, or prurient, the possibility that sex could be spiritual, much less sacred, may seem shocking.
Yet the evidence is compelling that for many thousands of years — much longer than the thirty to fifty centuries we call recorded history — this was the case. Toward a new economics The real wealth of a nation is not financial.
Therefore, we need what we have not had—economic measurements, policies, and practices that give visibility and adequate value to the most important human work: the work of caring for people, starting in early childhood, and caring for our natural environment.
Without caring and caregiving, none of us would be here. There would be no households, no workforce, no economy, nothing. Yet despite all this, most current economic discussions do not mention caring and caregiving. Nor is the value of the work of caring in households included in current economic measurements. It does not have to be this way. Indeed, the social and economic dislocations inherent in the current shift from the industrial to the post-industrial era offer us an unprecedented opportunity to reexamine and restructure economic theory and practice.
Availing ourselves of this opportunity is essential if we are to move to a more equitable, sustainable, and caring future. We know today, from both psychology and neuroscience, that whether or not people are cared for directly impacts human development, health, and life quality.
Caring economics and real wealth Some people in the U. However, we have to ask, were we really wealthy? Financial wealth can disappear, like the credit swaps and derivatives did, in a matter of seconds. What many are discovering is that the current financial wealth system often comes at the expense of our children, our families, communities, and the planet.
They are waking up to a new definition of wealth. We need an economic system that make it possible to have healthy food, good housing, enriching schools, natural and recreational space, and a sense of community. Study after study shows that what people truly find most valuable are relationships, meaning, service, and a sense of purpose. But the current economic system does not support or give value to caring for people, starting in early childhood, and caring for our Mother Earth.
We can, and must, change this! The simple fact that women are half of humanity is a reason for the correlation between the status of women and national economic success and quality of life. But the reasons go much deeper, to the still largely unrecognized interconnected cultural, social, and economic dynamics inherent in domination systems or partnership systems. In addition to the connection between a higher status of women and values and policies that support caring for people, there are a myriad other factors, including yet another matter ignored in conventional economic analyses: how resources are distributed not only within nations, but within households.
Studies also show that in these domination-oriented cultures, women have a higher propensity than men to spend on goods that benefit children and enhance their capacities. However, the socialization of men in such cultures teaches them to believe it is their prerogative to use their wages for non-family purposes, including drinking, smoking, and gambling and that when women complain, they are nagging and controlling.
The negative effects of the subordination of females to males on intrahousehold resources distribution go even further. In some world regions, parents both mothers and fathers often deny girls access to education, give them less health care, and even feed girls less than boys.
Obviously, these practices have terrible health consequences for girls and women. But giving less food to girls and women also adversely impacts the development of boys, as children of malnourished women are often born with poor health and below-par brain development Eisler, b.
In short, this gender-based nutritional and health care discrimination robs all children, male and female, of their potential for optimal development.
From Poverty to Partnership There is no realistic way to end poverty without taking into account the fact that women represent a disproportionate percentage of the poor worldwide. This high female poverty rate is not only due to wage discrimination in the market economy; it is largely due to the fact that these women are or were for much of their lives either full- or part-time caregivers of children or other family members.
Yet because they did this essential work without pay or later Social Security or pensions, they are condemned to an old age living in poverty. This, however, is not inevitable. It is a matter of social policies. Demonstrating the importance of changing policies are the low poverty rates of the nations that orient more to the partnership side of the continuum, such as Sweden, Norway, and Finland.
Here women and stereotypically feminine values have higher status. Not only that, Sweden has a high woman-headed household rate, yet these families are not poor.
Women, who are 40 percent of the legislatures, tend to support more caring policies as a group. As the status of women rises, men no longer find is such a threat to their status to embrace more stereotypically feminine values and behaviors. Changing Measures of Economic Health Current economic measures such as Gross Domestic Product GDP fail to give economic value to the most essential human work: caring for people and nature.
Unfortunately satellite accounts do not get the publicity of economic measures such as GDP. But they are a start in the right direction. Reports by nongovernmental organizations also show the enormous value of the work of care. The study used both replacement value which reflects the low pay of care work in the market and opportunity cost which yields a higher value on average, measuring opportunity cost for individuals who perform unpaid care instead of entering the paid work force.
The latter was the equivalent of no less than While data showing the huge economic value of care work continue to accumulate, they are still given scant attention by academics, media, policy makers, and the public.
A major reason for this neglect is that the information does not fit into the old economic paradigms or the old ways of measuring economic health such as GDP. There is a connection between the status of women and whether caring and caregiving are valued. Therefore, we must also show policymakers the necessity of raising the status of women worldwide. The unsustainable nature of current ways of economic thinking and planning is further demonstrated by the fact that a growing number of jobs—not only in manufacturing but also in service industries, from receptionists to middle management—are being taken over by automation and robotics Associated Press, This irreversible trend, which will further accelerate with the development and use of artificial intelligence and nanotechnology, makes it even more urgent that we find alternatives to economic systems primarily driven by consumer spending.
Four cornerstones for a world of partnership and peace In this article for the Kosmos Journal , Eisler lays out four interventions that provide the foundations for shifting from domination to partnership. Once students understand the dynamics of the tension between the partnership and domination systems as two basic human possibilities, they can go beyond surfaces.
They can see the patterns that underlie seemingly unrelated currents and crosscurrents in our world — and be better equipped to live good lives and intervene in shaping their future.
Tag: Teddie Potter
It examines where societies fall on the partnership-domination scale and how this impacts equity, sustainability, peace, and how our brains develop. Combining cutting-edge findings from biological and social science, it explains regressions to strongman rule and other dangerous trends; re-examines our past including societies that for millennia oriented toward partnership , and outlines actions to move us in this life-sustaining-and enhancing direction. Her newest work, Nurturing Our Humanity: How Domination and Partnership Shape Our Brains, Lives, and Future, co-authored with anthropologist Douglas Fry and coming out with Oxford University Press in July , shows how to construct a more equitable, sustainable, and less violent world based on partnership rather than domination. Eisler is president of the Center for Partnership Studies CPS , dedicated to research and education, Editor-in-Chief of the Interdisciplinary Journal of Partnership Studies , an online peer-reviewed journal at the University of Minnesota that was inspired by her work, keynotes conferences nationally and internationally, has addressed the United Nations General Assembly, the U. Department of State, and Congressional briefings, and has spoken at corporations and universities worldwide on applications of the partnership model introduced in her work. Eisler pioneered the expansion of human rights theory and action to include the majority of humanity: women and children.
Early life[ edit ] Eisler was born in Vienna , fled from the Nazis with her parents to Cuba as a small child, and later emigrated to the United States. She obtained degrees in sociology and law from UCLA. Partnership and domination models[ edit ] Eisler proposes that new social paradigms are needed that transcend the limitations of conventional social categories such as religious vs. West, and pre-industrial vs. She notes that societies in all these categories have been repressive and violent, and that none answer the question of what kinds of institutions and beliefs support more equitable and peaceful relations. Domination system[ edit ] Eisler introduced the term domination system to describe a system of top-down rankings ultimately backed up by fear or force - man over man, man over woman, race over race, religion over religion, and man over nature. Examples of partnership-oriented societies include the Teduray , a tribal society studied by the University of California anthropologist Stuart Schlegel;  agrarian societies such as the Minangkabau , studied by the University of Pennsylvania anthropologist Peggy Reeves Sanday;  and technologically advanced ones like Sweden , Norway , and Finland , where there is a more democratic and egalitarian structure in the family, economy, and the state, more equal partnership between men and women for example, women are percent of national legislators , and more caring social policies such as universal health care , paid parental leave, and high quality early childhood education, as well as the rejection of violence in both intimate and international relations.
The Power of Partnership: Seven Relationships that Will Change Your Life