Monday, June 22, 2009

matriarchy


The Matriarch  (Barbara seated at left middle row, Great-Great Grandma -from Germany)
(daughter Elizabeth -"Lizzie" - standing above, top left)
My daughter had one last project to do for homework and it required a bit of familial investigation.  My sister sent this photo of the family titled "Matriarchs."  The woman seated to the far left in the middle row was "Barbara" and her only child and daughter stands above her, "Elizabeth"- called "Lizzie" who was the Mother to my Grandmother "Elsie."  These ladies were on a picnic at Shawnee Park in Kentucky.  I wonder if it was a hot summer day and if they felt the heat under all those layers of fabric up to their necks.  The children seem less enthralled with the photo session but nonetheless ever so patient to sit for this photo op.  

Tell me - do you think your family is ruled by women or are the men in charge?  Well, we just did have Father's day which was a day for all Fathers, but who brings about domestic tranquility in your family?  Is it the matriarchs or the patriarchs?  Now, don't be afraid to divulge if it is all about anarchy.  My answer would have to be the Matriarchs!

26 comments:

Purple Flowers said...

On my Mothers' side, it is definately matriarchial for everything.
My Father's side: although the men think they are in charge, it was the Matriarchs who are for everything.
As far as domestic tranquility - again, Matriarchs.
My deceased Father was a gentle man, and always admitted women were stronger than men. He highly respected women, and had a great Mother.

Deidra said...

You are blessed to have that photo, and to know the names and stories behind it.

I am quite sure that women have great influence - not just in my family, but throughout the world. It may be that men "keep things running" but it's the women who determine how fast, how far, and in which direction.

Kwana said...

What a wonderful photo. I think it's Matriarchs all the way. The women are the backbone in most families and in society.

jae said...

remember my big fat greek wedding where she says the man is the head, but the woman is the neck that tells the head which way to move.....

Joyce said...

It is the matriarchs, but led the patriarchs to think they were the ones in charge. It is interesting once the matriarchs or the patriarchs passes the crown who will wear it next.
Have a golden day day! xxoxo

home before dark said...

The men thought they were in charge. The women knew they were. But, as often happens, when the men die first, the women are often lost. So while I was always a daddy's girl, I now appreciate the complexities of marriage, the dance between the sexes. Loved your family photograph. Thank you for sharing this little gem.

Morning T said...

Amazing photo. I don't know if I'd say that the women in my family bring about 'domestic tranquility' (there is nothing tranquil about us) but we definitely rule the roost! :-)
Happy Monday- Tricia

GrannySmithGreen said...

What a dance it is. I think it's really all about balance. Great post, PVE!

annechovie said...

Great old photo! I bet they were hot in those dresses. I cannot imagine life in the South in the Summer before AC...unbearable. I think that men like to think they're in control, but it's usually the women who are keeping everything together. LOL

Simply Mel said...

No doubt, hands down, it's the Matriarchs who keep life in a constant flow of forward motion!

My grandmother's name is Elsie - the one I am always referring to in previous comments.

Allie in G'town said...

I think like most families the men in mine THINK it's patriachal but the women KNOW otherwise. In my opinion, the men are the wheels and the women are the grease. XXOO

VictoriaArt said...

On mother's side absolutely matriarchial, father's side very patriarchial, since they were five boys...and the father ruled with an iron hand!
In our house a mix, but on the domestic tranquility side matriarchial!
My father steppt very much in his father's shoes and I made sure not to have a husband like that!!!
Times have changed and I think by now woman have as much influence if not more then man. It depends so much on how parents raise their children how the next generation of man and woman behave.
Such a rare picture of woman in one family, wonderful!

Clarity said...

I think the men control the outside influences, but within - the heart and growing of the family - definitely Matriarchs. I remember once hearing that a mother deserves honour 3 times and then it's the father's turn.

A Day That is Dessert said...

Thanks for sharing this wonderful photo. Interesting question. My response is, it depends. It's complicated :)

Becky said...

Wow that is an old picture and looks in great shape! It's nice to have those for memories sake. My Mother is definately the one who wears the pants in our family! LOL!

Rhoda @ Southern Hospitality said...

Thank you for stopping by my blog! I've long admired your beautiful artwork all over blogland and have stopped by your blog many times. I don't think I left a comment though. So nice to officially meet you & I hope you'll stop back by to see me again.

LENORENEVERMORE said...

Great photo!
Definitely by the women...they control everything! Unfortunately, even the men in their lives- emotionally & psychologically...well, it's a long but juicy story really... Anyway, hope you have a great week dear~

Mary-Laure said...

YES! Vive les femmes!

bluehydrangea said...

love the photo. How lucky you are to have such a great piece of history. I wonder if it will inspire a painting...

Ideezine said...

It will always be matriarchy. Mother of invention. Grounded soul. Ready to rule anything.

Bette

Sanity Fair said...

I love family photographs like this - little windows back in time. You're lucky to have it!

Rachel Follett said...

Great photo! So much history to it!

Liz said...

Gee, I think we, as parents, in our best moments are pretty equal in our separate forces. I bring social, familial and he brings local as in community.

pve design said...

Liz, "big sister"
You are correct that it is 50% 50% for it truly to work, but I think Mom would say it is the matriarch who instills the "atta boy" attitude to not give up and to keep the faith.
thanks for sending us the photo via e-mail.
pve

Prairie Girl Studio said...

i DO love old photos like this ... just the expressions are worth so much ... and to be able to identify them and give history to them and the setting is invaluable!
my great grandmothers photo sits on the high mantle in our home ... very much the matriach looking down ... and every now and again my dad would kinda shudder and say 'that's the same look she always gave me'.
for my family, i would have to say 'matriach' ...
for my husbands, 'patriach' ...
and around here, we simply say 'yes, dear'.

Easy and Elegant Life said...

It is a matriarchy on both sides. The Greeks are the iron fisted variety; the Southerners wore a velvet glove. Mrs. E. is half Venezuelan and theirs is a matriarchal society in general. As the "more social" of the genders, I imagine that women are more prone to be able to "keep the family together." Almost all the men I've known are borderline or out-and-out "loners."