BY MARCUS OF AR
        While some would argue that there is absolutely no place for the topic of "Female  Supremacy," as you call it, in Gorean discourse-- I disagree.

        Norman obviously wanted to explore that element of human interaction, also. Else he  wouldn't have given us detailed accounts of the Silver Masks or Tharna, or illustrate  the capture of males at the hands of Panther Girl bands. Which he does.

        In my opinion he's trying to illustrate the difference between the dictates of fantasy  versus those of reality. Granted, in a subjective Gorean laboratory of his own making.  But I find the results quite informative.

        The Silver Masks of Tharna ruled there because, essentially, at some point in the past,  the males of that city completely bought into the concept that Free Women (whom their  society already recognized as worthy of the utmost respect) should, therefore, be  placed on pedestals ABOVE their men-- to rule over them.

        Norman depicts the results as disastrous. Not all women are capable of doing so  responsibly or ably, obviously, but the end result was worse. Because, in order to  maintain their physically stronger and more combative males under control, the females  resorted to a program of total subjugation.

        None of the Silver Masks ran down into the sand arena to personally beat the crap out  of resistant males, of course. They weren't capable of doing that. Instead, they  enlisted the aid of other, cooperative males who would do that part of it for them, in  exchange for money or favors.

        The women of Tharna didn't conquer the men of Tharna. Those men conquered themselves.  Because they mistakenly allowed their inherent cultural Gorean respect and admiration  for strong and capable women to blind them to the fact that not ALL women were worthy  of such respect, or were capable of serving as a just and honorable Tatrix.

        It is the rarest of women who are capable of earning such respect in the eyes of their  men.

        The end result was misery and frustration across the board. The women of Tharna weren't  particularly happy ordering their men around like a bunch of surly dogs; and there were  naturally a lot of petty, nasty unqualified women who wound up in charge just because  they WERE women, though in truth as individuals, they had no business being in charge  of anything.

        By the time the Silver Masks of Tharna are dethroned, the long-suppressed anger and  frustration at the indignities endured by the Gorean males of that city is so powerful  that those males assume total control over their city, and the very concept of the  respected "Free Woman" is abandoned by them. Having misused the opportunity to lead and  rule, the women of Tharna are stripped of that opportunity forever.

        The Panther Girls are a different situation entirely. These are strong, capable women  who (it is suggested) have rebelled against the all-or-nothing view of females  prevalent in the Gorean cities. Either they were unfairly or inappropriately enslaved,  against their own true natures-- or else they have yet to meet men powerful enough to  inspire their devotion. So they did the only thing they could do under the situation--  they ran from Gorean society to someplace where Gorean society could not reach them--  to the heart of the great Northern Forests.

        They are still frustrated, minus their men. They remain one-half of the human  experience. In rejecting the patriarchal Gorean society and replacing it with one of  their own, they must admit that their new society is an incomplete one. Men have the  physical power to dominate women, one-on-one, if they choose to do so. The only way a  woman can completely escape that possibility, without recourse to willing and combative  males who will act in her behalf against other males, is to completely eliminate all  traces of anything male from her life.

        The sexual frustration grows so great that they routinely kidnap hapless males through  clever woodcraft and strength of numbers, and then have sex with them against their  will-- dominating them, in a revenge ritual wherein they simultaneously fulfill their  deep-seated sexual needs while displaying their self-professed power over the male of  the species-- through the act of rape.

        In order to escape the power of men, the Panther Girls remake themselves in the image  of men. In order to assume male power, they adopt male behavior in emulation of their  male counterparts. In order to escape their fear of rape, they become the rapists.

        But this is a situation that cannot last. Ultimately, many of the Panther Girls, when  freely given the choice, are depicted rather sheepishly returning to Gorean  civilization, weary of the frustration and constant effort required to remain separate  from the males of their race, having learned that ultimately they aren't men, nor do  they really wish to be.

        Verna stays in the forest. Only Marlenus is powerful enough to make her bow, a fact to  which she readily admits. He has inspired her love and proven himself worthy of her  devoted service. But in the end they both know that if she is kept in captivity, even  as Ubara, it will destroy who she is.

        She is not a Female Supremacist. She is, rather, the freest of all the Free Women of  Gor. She will not depend upon men to give her freedom-- she will be free without them.

        But in order to do so-- she must exist without them.

        There is no "Female Supremacy" on Gor. There are only two sexes-- two halves of the  same whole, which comprise the human race. As it should be-- as it, undeniably, IS.

        In the end, the only way a woman can rule upon Gor-- or anywhere-- is with the  cooperation of the males in her vicinity.

        If she can achieve that-- as a Free Woman, as a Tatrix, even as a female slaver-- then  Gorean Philosophy suggests that there's no reason why she shouldn't. Providing it  thoroughly pleases the men whom she rules.

        But if she wants to REPLACE the men in her vicinity or completely escape the fact of  their physical influence over her-- to rule without them-- then she had better dig a canoe and paddle a long way upriver, into the forest.

        And for the record-- it's a lot harder to earn the cooperation and respect of Gorean  men than that of the typically uninformed, socially-fettered male too often found in  modern Western society. 

        It was recently said to me (regarding BDSM) that "Female Supremacy is another aspect of the lifestyle, not necessarily one's belief regarding the 'real world' and all that is  in it."

        In all honesty, I fail to see how a "lifestyle" can function without acknowledging and  representing "the real world" and all that's in it.

        Unless one approaches the "lifestyle" as something that can be turned on or off at  will, like a light switch.

        In which case, that's less a "lifestyle" than a temporary affectation, isn't it?

        My "life style" is the manner in which I live my life. All the time. It's based on my  acceptance and adherence to Gorean philosophy.

        No female lifts a whip in my presence without my express permission.

        That being the case-- in whose hand does the real power lie?

        I wish you well,

        Marcus
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