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Monday, July 13, 2009

Why I'm Glad Chivalry Is Dead

Apparently feminism has killed chivalry. Not that I'm going to mourn this loss or anything. For me, chivalry is all about the attitude and intention behind the belief that men have to take care of women because women are too weak and dainty to take care of themselves.

But there is a big different between men feeling as if they have to take care of women and being nice. I won't get upset if someone holds a door for me. But I hold doors for people too. It's all about being nice and respectful of other people, not feeling as if someone needs to door held for them. One of my professors at Beloit College used to tell this story about when he was a freshmen at Beloit he held the door open for a senior woman and she punched him in the face for it. Now, I see this as an extreme. This guy was not trying to offend the woman or say that she couldn't open the door for herself, he was just trying to be nice.

Just because the values behind chivalry is dead, doesn't mean that people can't be nice to each other.

And for those who equate chivalry with romance, the art of romance is apparently dead as well, and feminism is again to blame. Lauren at Chickspeak says...

We are women, hear us roar! We want a career, our own home and car, and a life that can not only function but thrive without the help of a man. At the same time most of us still want to fall in love, get married and have a family. The question is where is the balance, and have we intimidated the male gender so much we have killed the chivalrous acts of dating?

But being an independent, strong woman and being in a healthy, romantic relationship do not have to be mutually exclusive and romance does not have to be associated with chivalry. There are plenty of ways to be romantic without the attitude of chivalry (because chivalry is really all about the attitude and intention, anyways). A woman can have a successful career and be an all around strong woman and be in a romantic relationship, trust me, I've seen it. It does take certain kinds of people to be in these relationships, but they are possible.

All in all, chivalry is dead, but romance can still be alive and kicking...and that's the way it should be!


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