Dowries & The Dystopian Future

My friend’s daughter turned one a few days ago and I was invited to the birthday party. Not wanting to show up empty handed, I decided to write a small check as a gift for the baby. After I signed the check, I realized that I’d left the “memo” line empty. My friend is one of those ultra-feminist types (complete with a Rosie the Riveter tattoo), refuses to dress her daughter in anything that alludes to femininity, heavy into the gender neutral/blank slate psychobabble that is so much in vogue nowadays. So, to antagonize her I flirted with the idea of writing “for N’s dowry college fund” as the memo.

Ultimately, I settled on writing “for N’s college fund” so that it was clear who the check was for, coming to the conclusion that sometimes it’s best not to goad. Upon further reflection, however, I realized that I wasn’t too far afield. In seventeen years, that money will have far more utility as part of a dowry than it will as a contribution to the little girl’s college fund. The West in general and the U.S. in particular is in the end stages of a decline into civilizational irrelevance, and the Dark Age that will follow will necessarily bring with it a hard reset from suicidal liberalism to far more antiquated and patriarchal ways of life and the resurgence of the traditions associated with vigorously androcentric cultures.

What is a dowry and what is its function? A dowry is collateral, either real or monetary that is brought by a bride to her husband upon marriage. While the dowry’s intended purposes varied slightly from culture to culture, dowries primarily served two purposes: to defray the costs associated with the maintenance of the newly established household and to prevent the woman from falling into poverty in the event of the husband’s death or abandonment of her. Above all, the dowry was provided in the recognition that the husband assumed a burden when he assumed a wife and that the assumption of this burden should be offset in some pecuniary fashion. As women in antiquity and in pre-modern eras typically did not work outside the home, were not formally educated, and were likely to have several children.

Roman family law is unequivocal in this realization: “the dowry should be where the burdens of marriage are; fairness requires that the fruits of the dowry (fructus dotis) should accrue to the husband, since he bears the burdens of marriage, it is fair that he also receives the fruits.” Legally, the wife retained her claim to the dowry which had to be returned to her if her husband divorced her or upon her husband’s death. Practically, this never happened, as the husband’s relatives who were responsible for settling his estate viewed the widow as a burden upon the husband’s estate. This was the case in in late medieval/Renaissance Italy. Dowries also served as a type of insurance policy, with the secondary effects of reducing occurrences of marital dissolution and capricious abandonment.

The features common to almost all dotal cultures are patriarchal norms supported by legal system enshrining patriarchy while strongly penalizing female inconstancy/infidelity (for example, Roman family law entitled the husband to maintain a 1/6 of the dowry per child, up to three if the woman initiated divorce against him, with an additional 1/6 in the event of adultery), extreme socially reinforced traditionalism (female domesticity, young marriage, several children), small decentralized governments, and pre-modern conditions.

Obviously, in the postmodern, enlightened, liberated, technology addled, and equality fetishizing West, women are “strong, and independent, and don’t need no man” (provided that the government is behind the scenes facilitating this “independence” by diverting money from far more productive men and funneling the lucre to initiatives and programs designed to benefit women almost exclusively in exchange for their votes). No dowries are necessary, as modern women aren’t taken on by their husbands as wards or burdens but rather as equals, at least superficially. Patriarchy is railed against as a relic of a time when women were “oppressed.” Thus, female liberation vitiates the need for dowry customs as women no longer millstones around the necks of their husbands.

Currently, in 2015 the topography of most females’ life plan map looks something like this: go to high school, then go to college/university which is financed primarily through usurious loans from the government or from private sources, once in university, “do what you love” and major in some useless subject, don’t look for a potential mate because that’s a waste of time and all men are rapists anyway, drench yourself in deluges of cock on a voyage of “self discovery,” graduate with mortgage sized debt, obtain more debt to pursue an equally useless advanced degree, graduate for good and begin working in some low prestige and low paid make-work position, realize that you hate your empty cubicle monkey existence and start looking for a man in earnest to save you from languishing in corporate drudgery.

Built into this life plan are certain assumptions: (1) the continued existence of a strong centralized and solvent government capable of and inclined to redistribute the earnings of men to women through gynocentric policies and outright preferences (2) adjunct to that, the government’s continued solvency and continued ability to provide loans to finance even the most useless of degrees (3) the continued existence of the U.S. as a world power, however enervated (4) continued male desire to remain productive within society in spite of a misandrist system (5) university’s continued relevance as a mechanism for gaining access to wealth (6) replacement level reproduction

2032 however, will be a whole different kettle of fish for reasons obvious to anyone with an iota of awareness of what is just around the bend.

The failure of 1-3 of these pillars will yield mild to moderate discomfort; the failure of all of these pillars will mean the abrupt and catastrophic end to life as we know it. Liberalism is on its deathbed, its death rattles heard by all as it draws its last breaths. The collapse is already in motion and the pillars keeping this ersatz culture aloft are beginning to crumble. Consider:

2032 or thereabouts will likely find us at a crossroads. Collapse is inevitable, but the response is variable. Regardless of the outcomes, dowries may make a comeback either to allay the burdens of marriage for men in a world post collapse world forcibly returned to conditions mimicking premodernity and restores tradition and patriarchy or in a slightly modified form to provide insurance for ever decreasing numbers of affluent males desirous of security against the villainy of females in a post collapse world that persists in its gynocentricity at men’s expense.

The West may either:

  • admit the failures of equalism and liberalism, reform the unjust family law system, eliminate no fault divorce, uproot feminism, place a 20-year moratorium is placed on immigration, establish austerity programs, repeal quotas and gender preferential laws thus forcing women out of the workplace and allowing men to reassume their rightful places as breadwinners, stop underwriting universities so that they become less expensive but more selective with leaner operating budgets, make efforts to correct massive gender imbalances skewing female, permit companies to make use of intelligence tests in hiring OR
  • make no key reforms, increase spending to stave off the effects of the collapse and institute a policy of managed decline, continue to favor women continue in hiring, continue to allow women to obtain 60% of all college degrees, keep funding universities allowing them to become even more expensive, irrelevant, and dumbed down, continue employing women in make-work government positions, permit men to fall further and further behind creating a permanent male underclass with a few elite marriageable men, accept that instability and constant low level violence will become permanent features of the new landscape

In the first scenario, dowry customs may see an uptick in popularity due to a female exodus from the labor force and back into the home. This development will not be negative per se, but will simply be the result of a massive corrective trending towards a patriarchal model. The reforms will be sufficient to assure men that they will not be thrown to the wolves by a wife looking to hit the circuit again in a bid to trade up and then fleeced by proxy by divorce courts that overwhelmingly favor women. Women will be more of a burden, but the benefits of marriage will nonetheless outweigh the risks to men.

The second scenario may see dowries reintroduced, but for considerably more brutal reasons. This scenario seems likelier to occur than the former due to the entrenchment of special interests, feminists and assorted leftists desirous of the complete collapse of the current system. Times will be hard, women will still have incomes, albeit substantially reduced, and women will increasingly seek safe havens in marriage to guard against victimization by roving gangs of brigands. Dowries will, for all intents and purposes, become necessary for all women seeking monogamous, heterosexual marriages as men seek insurance against the vagaries of an unpredictable and unfair family law system. In this scenario, polygamy rates will likely increase geometrically, as below average to average men steadily drop out of the marriage market clearing the field for the wealthiest and most elite men, and all but the most beautiful and/or wealthiest women resort to sharing the few men still willing to play the game.

Maybe my friend should just cash the check and buy the baby some shades. The future is just that bright.

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