De-masculization of the Future and of Futures Studies (1999)

By Ivana Milojević

From Verdandi to Belldandy: the Goddess of the Present Wishes a Better Future

The Reality
The majority of the liberal, or `progressive’ futurists today acknowledge the fact that Futures Studies – a not yet recognized field of enquiry within traditional disciplinary scientific divisions – have been dominated by one-civilizational view of time, reality and space. The futures of non-Western people and countries have been colonized in a similar way to their presents or pasts.[1] But even among the most progressive futurist there is a very strong underlying belief that, somehow, futures studies are at least gender-free. These futurists believe that futures studies are field in which personal values and attributes transcend polarized gender divisions. Some of them would rather belong to `people’s movement’ then to one which is part of and belongs to a particular gender group, or they describe the future like a `loo’ with separate entries but with the inside the same for everyone.

This reminds me of the debates and realities in my own country, and the efforts to transcend particular national identities while creating a new, Yugoslav one. Not surprisingly, it was always easier for the largest national group within the former Yugoslavia, the Serbs, to have their identity changed, as they did not feel that this new identity would deny their previous one.

On the other hand, marginal national groups, not just in Yugoslavia, often see the overlapping globalizing identities as a threat to their own, as they realize they would always be outnumbered. The reason why I, and some other women futurists, believe we should still occasionally work within `women’s groups’ is because within futures studies – especially where money and status are involved – women are outrageously outnumbered. The big umbrella of futures studies should be big enough to cover eveyone’s issues and concerns, but in reality, the famous futures fork is always leaning towards the male side and masculinity.

What is even more disturbing is the fact that most women futurists within `people movements’ work within accepted styles, on problems and issues as defined by masculinist concerns. This is, again, not surprising. Past and even present events teach us that if women `come out’ as feminist, or try to discuss women’s own views on future, they usually come under vicious attack.   One example is a special report in The Futurist on `Women’s Preferred Futures’.[2] This report was initially included in the journal as a result of women futurists complaints that an article in the journal: `Women of the Future: Alternative scenarios’, had been written by a man.[3] Women futurists who sent the letter, Hazel Handerson, Eleonora Masini and Riane Eisler, did not want to `condemn’ the article itself believing it was `well meaning’, but felt that women futurists should had been allowed `to speak for themselves’.[4] This feeling was intensified partly because of one illustration on the same page represented a chained woman.

Behind all the immediate and transparent reasons, the reaction was probably partly intensified as a result of long-term frustration with male domination in the field. Not only are men the greatest experts when it comes to the future in general, or when it comes to the every particular aspect of it, their views and opinions are also consulted when it comes to women’s futures, issues and concerns.

In response to critiques of the representation of women, the World Future Society, which publishes The Futurist, decided to `put up’ with women’s issues, and invited women futurists to `tell their vision of a preferred future’.[5] The section has been `written, edited, typeset, designed, and illustrated solely by women’.[6]  Not long after, this special report came under attack in the letters section. Even though this report asked women futurists what would be their preferred vision for the future, women who contributed were labelled as an `unrealistic bunch’.[7]

The other critique, also by a man, is a paradigmatic critique which follows feminism from its early days: this bunch could not claim to represent the `majority of women’ and instead the average woman should had been asked to `speak for herself’.[8] While it is, of course, perfectly acceptable, that western male futurists can make any generalization or universalistic statements about `the future’, when it comes to women’s futurists visions, `their opinions and prophecies’ are labelled as `self-serving of their own emotional and financial needs’.[9] The writer of the letter suggested that we should instead try to go out and find the average woman, meaning a `mother, homemaker, wife, school volunteer, or factory or office worker’.[10] The only letter sent by a woman, however, labeled one particular aspect of report as `enriching’, as it is gives an alternative to the issue she, in her working life, finds `distressing’.[11]

For most gender-conscious women futurists it is obvious that there is a big discrepancy in the way most people think about future trends and their alternatives, depending on which gendered interests they represent. Feminine alternatives are usually labelled as poor writing, or naive, or without enough substance, or utopian, while masculinist images, especially techno-maniacal and dystopian, are usually seen as realistic, far reaching and logical. It is interesting that especially the darkest images of the future get to be chosen as `realistic’ – somehow, people `take it as axiomatic that fears are realistic and hopes unrealistic’.[12] For feminist futurists it is also obvious that the way to the `future’s loo’ is all high-tech, making-life-easier, on the gentlemen’s side, and far too difficult, naturalized with thorns and bushes, on the ladies side.

The domination of the masculinist images of the future has now reached a new peak. These images are accepted by globalizing popular media, local and global policy planners or even by many liberal futurists. They all give priority and attach higher value to grand historical analyses and issues, and especially concentrate on discussions where power is going next. And this is where a women futurists might rather wish to be on the `other side’, either among `average women’ or among radical feminist separatist groups. Because the power in the `next millennia’ starting with 21C definitely does not seem like it is going in the direction of women. Just take the year 2200 as an example: according to Kurian and Molitor it will be an era in which women own up to 20% of the world’s property (a dramatic increase from the hardly believable 1% as it is apparently today).[13] At the same time, world income received by women will increase from the current 10% to 40%, which would represent a significant increase – if it is realized.[14] Kurian and Molitor, however, do not state on which `facts’ they base their forecasts. In fact, there is an ever increasing gap between rich and poor, and women are, unfortunately, still the majority of the world’s poor.

Posmodernism and the influence of non-Western feminist have changed the way we write and think about `women’ and destabilized previous universalistic conception. However, even though we now accept that the category of `women’ is as diverse and different as category of `men’ or `people’, since there are certain things we, as people, all share, there are also certain things we, as women, still have in common. One of those things is that we (women) all lack the most important resources for liberating ourselves and the future from masculinist domination: resources in time and personal energy. Both time and our energy are shattered over the multiplicity of the tasks necessary for adjustment and survival within patriarchal societies. Furthermore, together with many other marginal groups we lack the initial resources in wealth, education and knowledge, informal networks and even more importantly the will to engage in the power battle. Having said all this, I wish to conclude this section on `realistic’ writing about the future, or the writing which starts `with the trends as they seem to be emerging now, and then speculate on how they might develop’.[15]

Instead, I will now further explore women’s tradition of thinking about and influencing the future, and contemplate how the future could be liberated or de-masculinized.

Women and the future
At present, the fact is that women are not in charge of the future. Although being `practicing’ futurists'[16] women do not decide much about the general future, nor are they expected to. But that was not always so. The importance of looking in the past, for our efforts in thinking about and creating of the future, can be summarized in a famous sentence by Kenneth Boulding: if it exist, it is possible.[17] So even if present trends do not promise much to girls and women of the future, our own ability to also create the future certainly gives us more hope.

The past
The evidence of women’s one time importance when it comes to understanding and creating the future can be easily found in the realm of old and long memories – those expressed in Slav, Greek, Roman, Nordic, Saxon or Indian mythology.

In my own, Slav tradition, there are stories of so called sudjenice (from serbo-croatian word for destiny: sudbina) which are represented as three women in charge of deciding everyone’s personal destiny. They are also known as sudjaje, rodjenice, or rozanice.[18] They arrive when the child is born and decide every particular aspect of her/his future life. Their will can not be changed, but people can try to please them and in that way increase the chances of a positive outcome.

In the Greek tradition, they are The Fates, or Moirae (`cutters-off’, `allotters’), which personify the inescapable destiny of man. Clotho, the spinner, spins the thread at the beginning of one’s life; Atropos, the measurer, weaves thread into the fabric of one’s actions; and Lachesis, cutter, snips thread at the conclusion of one’s life.[19] The process is absolutely unalterable, and gods as well as women and men have had to submit to it.[20] As goddesses of fate, the Moirae `necessarily knew the future and therefore were regarded as prophetic deities: thus their ministers were all the soothsayers and oracles’.[21] The Roman equivalent were Fortunae, or (apparently in the medieval period) three Parcae (`those who bring forth the child’): Nona, Decuma and Morta. Most religious traditions call the Fates `weavers’ and latin word destino means that which is woven. [22]

In the Nordic tradition they are called Norns. There are also three Norns: Urd, representing fate, Verdandi, representing being, and Skuld, representing necessity. Three Norns could change into swans for ease of travel but they could have been usually found near the roots of the ash tree Yggdrasil. Yggdrasil had tree huge roots: one stretched to the underground spring of Urd (earth); the second reached to the well of Mimir, the well which was the source of all wisdom; and, the third went to Niflheim, the underworld presided over by the goddess Hel.[23]

Each one of three Norns knows and is accredited with a particular province: Urd knows the past, Verdandi the present, and Skuld the future. In fact, it seems that the only deity which was especially in charge of the future, is not a deity, but a deitess, Skuld. According to Barbara Walker all of Scandinavia and also Scotland was named after her, Skuld, or `as Saxons called her, Skadi’.[24]

The Saxon Weird sisters also represented the past, present, and future: become, becoming, and shall be.[25] It seems that Norns and their equivalents were based on the great Indo-European Goddess as Creator, Preserver and Destroyer and are in some ways close to the Indian goddess Kali.[26]  Kali also symbolizes `eternal time and hence she both gives life and destroys it’.[27]  Mother Kali continually ruled the Wheel of Time (Kalacakra), where all the life-breath of the world was fixed.[28]  In most archaic traditions, `the deciding of men’s fates was a function of the Goddess’.[29]  Goddesses were also often creators of the universe: for example, in Sumerian cosmogony the ultimate origin of all things was the primeval sea personified as the goddess Nammu – the goddess who gave birth to the male sky god, An, and the female earth goddess, Ki.[30]

Past and present
In patriarchal times the Fates became `witches’: Shakespeare’s three witches were called Weird Sisters (adapted from Saxon tradition).[31]  The Christian church appropriated this ancient beliefs and transformed the trinity of She-Who-Was, She-Who-Is, and She-Who-Will Be into its holy trinity of the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit.[32]  As God became male so did time, so did the future. Men decided which parts of our past tradition deserved to be recorded[33] and passed onto future generations; they decided which direction we should choose next. From many secret symbols which celebrated the power of women and female principles, the symbol of Venus (representing love and sexuality) was chosen for women. If we try to deconstruct this symbol we can see that its essence is in the cross below, the cross which, especially if surrounded with the circle, has traditionally been the symbol for the Earth. Men’s symbol, the sign of Mars (god of war) has its essence in the arrow: a symbol often viewed as a phallic symbol, as a weapon of war. In the male symbol the arrow is pointed towards the upright direction, which is not surprisingly also how we draw trends and movements toward the future. The present understanding of women is in their role as conservers, deeply rooted in the ground, with their essence in the body. Men are the ones who transcend their mind, and are in charge of the future, as they are the ones who bring about political changes and preach radically new prophecies.

I said it is not surprising that we draw future trends in the same way we draw the symbol for God of war as this is exactly the direction we are heading toward. Each year we face more and more people being killed, especially civilians in wars between countries, and in wars on the streets. We are fighting against `mother Nature’ and against our own, inevitably animal bodies. Our most popular images of the future are the ones of war games, of the future with ever more powerful weapons and ever more powerful enemies. Conquest in the future is as important as the conquest now, and it is both the ultimate conquest of old enemies and battle for life and death with new ones (aliens, cyborgs, mutants, androgynes). This has resulted in the sad fact that, according to the recent UNESCO study, the killer robot played by Arnold Schwarzenegger, or the `Terminator’, `was the most popular character among the world’s children’.[34] The survey, which was billed as the first worldwide study of violence in the media, said 88 percent of children around the world knew Terminator, who was `a global icon’ and that more than half the children – raised in environments of violence – wanted to be like him.[35]

Recent present and the future
Such an idiotic obsession with death, killing and self-destruction has had the impact of awakening worshipers of peace, nature and tranquility. If Raine Eisler is right, time is right for yet another shift in the power battle between the female and the male principle. Women, say Aburdene and Naisbitt, have lately evolved `into a more complex state of wholeness’, successfully absorbing positive masculine traits, and will lead the way to the future.[36]

As a part of this process many feminists have tried to revive the Goddess as a symbol of this power shift. The reason behind the Goddess reawakening is empowerment: as `long as people visualize God as male, women are diminished and inferior’.[37]

But this time it might be much more difficult for the Goddess to express its female principle. For postmodernists, essence as `women’ (or female) and `men’ (or male) does not exist as such any more. In fact there are hardly any criteria left which would suffice to describe two different and opposite genders. Criteria like appearance can be challenged by transdressers and transvestites. Sexual orientation has always been problematic as a criterion since homosexuality among humans has (probably) always been present. Thanks to modern medical science, the natural characteristics of the sexes can be transformed and changed, women becoming men and vice versa. Woman (or man) as a social category is also problematic since any universalist statement about woman (man) can be questioned from the position of epistemological (and group) minorities and different perspectives. The Reawakened Goddess of the Future will have to work rather in a context of future multiple-gender diversities then in the context of traditional female-male polarity.

But this is not the only challenge the awakened Goddess is facing. She ruled in the societies which belong to a totally different historical context. The renewed symbols of Goddesses are also symbols which make much more sense within the context of agricultural societies. The cyclical understanding of time, reclaimed as women’s, as opposed to a linear patriarchal one, has probably resulted from observations about cyclical changes within nature – observations obviously extremely important for agricultural societies. It is difficult to revive the ancient cults of earth and goddess worship in times when less and less women live by the dictums of their own natural cycles, where enormous number of world’s women live in cities, and where reproduction within women’s bodies might soon become obsolete – several thousands years of masculinist rites and gods notwithstanding. Donna Haraway senses this change while declaring she would rather be a cyborg then a goddess.[38]

And our own Norn Skuld does not sit under the secret ash tree any more, but in front of the computer, with her sister Urd.[39] While surfing the Net we can visit `The Sacred Shrine of Skuld-sama’ where we are welcomed to an information resource and place of worship dedicated to Skuld, the technologically-minded young Goddess from ‘Aa! Megamisama’. The Skuld of Today is 12 Earth years old, 150 cm tall, with brown eyes and black hair, while her vital measurements are se-cr-et! She is a second class goddess with limited license. Her domain is still the future but her travel medium these days is water. We are also informed that she likes her older sister Belldandy. And 131’s Ice cream. Besides eating ice cream her favorite activity is to build all sorts of mechanical devices. Her best inventions include Banpei-kun, the anti-Marller defense robot and Skuld’s Own Debugging Machine, a modified rice cooker that specializes in catching bugs in a manner similar to the Ghostbusters’ Ghost Trap. She is still a very strong-willed girls displaying sometimes fiery temper, and is in charge of `debugging’ the Yggdrasil mainframe up in the Heavens, as well as the occasional bug that appears on the Surface. She has her own Image, Music and Sound, Literature, and Movie World Library, her own Desktop Themes (Skuld backdrops, cursors, a game, and more!) and, of course, her own Mailing List.

Women as practicing futurists
However, it is not only in the distant past or in the emerging future that women thought and think about or tried and try to influence the future. Even during the peak of the patriarchy there are some individual women who were trying to change gender relationships. At least, women have always been `practicing futurists’. And they have always been active within the grass-root movements. At the same time though, women did not and do not decide much about the general future. Women’s encounter with the future is reserved for us in order to better care for future generations and present households. Therefore women have to know something about the future, but not too much. They should organize local networks to support global political and economical processes, but should not intervene within the essence of the latter. Even old and traditional women’s activities directed towards influencing the future (through their role of witches or fates) were primarily local, personal, family and community-oriented.

The feminist dictum of the personal being political suddenly gave us the legitimation to bringing what has always been extremely important to us (personal relationships, family, community) into the societal level. For example, the issue of violence against women is less and less considered as a private matter, an event which happens and should remain behind the closed door. Rather, it is seen as a global issue: and the actions in prevention and reduction of violence are therefore being conducted at the world level as well.

The legitimization of `women’s issues’ have created the opportunity for many women futurists to write about not only local but also global futures directions. Many are envisioning radically different future societies and suggesting feminist (or women’s) alternatives to patriarchy. Their images can easily been labelled as utopian: for example, Boulding’s vision of gentle/androgynous society or Eisler’s partnership model/gylany. However, the images brought to us by the work of Boulding, Eisler and feminist fiction writers, utopian or feasible, are extremely important for the de-masculization of the future. Because what we can imagine, we can create.

Elise Boulding, Raine Eisler and feminist utopias
Elise Boulding’s image of the `gentle society’ is an image of a society situated within decentralist (and demilitarized) but yet still interconnected and interdependent world.[40] The creators of the gentle society will be androgynous human beings (she brings examples from history in the images of Jesus, Buddha and Shiva), people who combine qualities of gentleness and assertiveness in ways that fit neither the typical male nor the typical female roles. The coming of the gentle society will, according to Boulding, happen through three main leverage points: family, early-childhood school setting (nursery school and early elementary school) and through community. Boulding believes that both women fiction writers and `ordinary’ women imagine and work in a direction of creating a more localized society, where technology will be used in a sophisticated and careful way to ensure humanized, interactive, nurturant and nonbureaucratic societies. Through women’s triple role of breeder-feeder-producer women can bring radically different imaging and are therefore crucial for the creation of more sustainable and peaceful world.

For Raine Eisler – in our nuclear/electronic/biochemical age – transformation towards a partnership society is absolutely crucial for the survival of our species.[41]  Since today, due to many technological changes, our species’ possess technologies as powerful as the processes of nature, if we do not wish to destroy all life on this planet we have to change the dominator (patriarchal) cultural cognitive maps. In gylany (as opposed to androcracy) linking instead of ranking is the primary organization principle. It lacks institutionalization and idealization of violence and stereotypes of masculinity and femininity. More equal partnerships exist between women and men in both the so-called private and public spheres and there is a more generally democratic political and economic structure. She also envisions gylany as society in which stereotypical `feminine’ values can be fully integrated into the operational system of social guidance.

Boulding’s and Eisler’s imaging of future societies corresponds in many ways to feminist fictions writings. It also corresponds to most grass-roots women’s activities and to women’s involvement within the peace or green social movements. For Boulding, education is one of the most important social institutions, crucial for our future. Similarly, in most feminist utopias, education and motherhood are not only extremely respected, sometimes they are the main purpose for the existence of the utopian society in question. There are also some other common themes in feminist utopias: future societies tend to live in `peace’ with nature and have some sort of sustainable growth; they are generally less violent than present ones; families seldom take a nuclear form but are more extended (often including relatives and friends); communal life is highly valued; societies are rarely totalitarian; oppressive and omnipotent governmental and bureaucratic control is usually absent, while imagined societies tend to be either `anarchical’ or communally managed.[42]

On the other hand, the masculinist colonization of the future brings about images of the totalitarian futures societies, societies with some sort of feudal social organization, and the ones in which the `progress’ is defined in terms of technological developments. Feminist writings about the future might be `naive’ or too utopian but mainstream images are rather evil and dangerous. Some of the elements within feminist imaging of the future are rather reminiscence to the times when gender relationships were more equal – in past agricultural and matrilocal societies. But even with all the recent technological developments there is nothing in the world (except our patriarchal cultural cognitive maps) to prevent us from giving priority to education and parenting instead of to the corporate and military sector. We can use new technologies rather to repair environmental damage then to keep on increasing it. We can use them to improve health and happiness of future generations rather then to steal the future from them. New technologies can also help create the system of direct democracy or connections between World Government and local communities. The Net can enable equal access to social groups previously discriminated because of their dis/ability, gender or race. It can help celebrate, understand and learn about diversity, difference and `the other’ rather then making our songs unison.

The De-masculization of the futures studies
If futures studies were to adopt the work within `feminine’ guiding principles they would most likely put priorities on the futures of education, parenting, community, relationships or health – the real grand issues! The method most commonly used would not be forecasting or trend analyses but rather backcasting – and the work with most disadvantaged groups in order to empower them. Futures research would always have gender differences in mind, from deciding which problems are going to be investigated, to research design, collection and interpretation of data. Futures research would not only acknowledge the pervasive influence of gender but would also be concerned with its ethical implications. [43]

Sometimes it is quite easy to make necessary changes. For example, the sentence `A host of new fertility treatments now enable barren women to have a much-wanted child'[44] should read `A host of new fertility treatments now enable childless couples to have a much-wanted child’. First is the language of the patriarchy, where it was always women who were blamed for the lack of children in the marriage and where the responsibility for child bearing and rearing was solely women’s. The second sentence is more in accordance to present knowledge in medicine about causes and reasons behind infertility – men’s inability to father the child being equally the cause of the problem. It is also the language of potentially emerging egalitarian relationships between genders and societies where parenting and education of children are going to be respected more -both by men and by general society.

The de-masculization of the future and futures studies seems very radical and most likely it will be a rather slow and difficult process. But the change needed is no more radical then the change which transformed Weird Sisters into witches, triple Goddess into Holy Trinity, and Verdandi into Belldandy. The emerging change might be utopian, but it is possible.

Ivana Milojevic, c/o Communication Centre, QUT, PO BOX 2434, Brisbane, Qld 4001

Ivana Milojevic, born in 1967. in Novi Sad, Yugoslavia, now temporarily lives in Brisbane, Australia. Her interest and research are in the area of women’s studies, future’s studies and sociology. She has several articles on issues dealing with gender and the future, including `Learning from Feminist Futures’ in David Hicks and Rick Slaughter, (eds), 1998 World Yearbook For Education, Kogan Page, London; and `Towards a Knowledge Base for Feminist Futures Studies’, in Rick Slaughter (ed), The Knowledge Base of Futures Studies, Vol. 3. DDM, Melbourne, 1996.

[1]. Zia Sardar, `The Problem’, Seminar 460, December 1997, pp. 12-19; Sohail Inayatullah, `Listening to Non-Western Perspectives’, in David Hicks and Richard Slaughter (eds), World Yearbook of Education 1998. Kogan Page, London, 1998, pp. 55-69.

[2]. The Futurist, 31(3), May-June 1997, pp. 27-39.

[3]. The Futurist, 30(3), May-June 1996, pp. 34-38.

[4]. The Futurist, 30(5), September-October 1996, p. 59.

[5]. Ibid.

[6]. The Futurist, 31(3), May-June 1997, pp. 27-39.

[7]. The Futurist, 31(5), September-October 1997, p.2.

[8]. Ibid.

[9]. Ibid.

[10]. Ibid.

[11]. Ibid.

[12]. Elise Boulding, Kenneth E. Boulding, The Future: Images and Processes, Sage Publications, Thousand Oaks, 1995, p.100.

[13]. George Kurian, Molitor Graham T T, Encyclopedia of the Future, Simon & Schuster Macmillan, New York, 1996, p. 400.

[14]. Ibid.

[15]. The Futurist, 31(5), September-October 1997, p.2.

[16]. Elise Boulding, The Underside of History: A View of Women through Time, Westview Press, Boulder, 1976, p. 781.

[17]. Elise Boulding, Kenneth E. Boulding, The Future: Images and Processes.

[18]. Also narancnici, orisnice (Bulgarian) or sudicki (Czech). Spasoje Vasiljev, Slovenska mitologija, (Slav mythology), Velvet, Beograd, 1996; Dusan Bandic, Narodna Religija Srba u 100 pojmova, (100 Notions in Serbian Folk Religion), Nolit, Beograd, 1991.

[19]. Robert E. Bell, Women of Classical Mythology, Oxford University Press, New York, p. 310; Michael Grant and John Hazel, Gods and Mortals in Classical Mythology, G.& C. Merriam Company, Springfield, Massachusetts, 1973, p. 175. Due to my `broken’ English I was surprised not to be able to find in these books any reference from ancient Nordic or Indian Civilization (I was not surprised there was no reference from Slav tradition as our tradition rarely gets mentioned). Then I saw a book on non- classical mythology and thought: `How interesting, what  contemporary mythology might be?’. My biggest surprise was that I saw references on classic and ancient Indian, Chinese, Nordic, even a little bit on Slav mythology. Only then I realized that only mythology from Greece and Rome deserves the name and the category of classic.

[20]. Robert Bell, ibid.

[21]. Ibid.

[22]. Barbara G. Walker, The Woman’s Dictionary of Symbols and Sacred Objects, Harper & Row, San Francisco, 1988, p. 158.

[23]. Ibid., p. 460.

[24]. Ibid., p. 267.

[25]. Ibid., p. 266.

[26]. Ibid., p. 267.

[27]. Margaret and James Stutley, Harper’s Dictionary of Hinduism, Harper & Row, New York, 1977, p. 137.

[28]. Barbara Walker, Ibid., p. 16.

[29]. Ibid., p.36.

[30].Roy Willis, World Mythology, Henry Holt and Company, New York, 1993, p. 62.

[31]. Barbara Walker, ibid., p. 43.

[32]. Ibid.

[33]. One example is previously mentioned World Mythology, by Roy Willis. Although the author states that `the goddesses of Egyptian mythology are often more formidable than the male deities’ (p. 50) he does not allow them nearly as much space. He also dedicates the special session on `Powerful Goddesses’ (according to the tradition of `Women Question’) only after many pages of description of male Gods.

[34]. The Courier-mail, Brisbane, Saturday, February 21, 1998, p.29.

[35]. Ibid.

[36]. Patricia Aburdene and John Naisbitt, Megatrends for Women, Villard  Books, New York, 1992, p. 262.

[37]. Ibid., p. 244.

[38]. Donna Haraway, `A Cyborg Manifesto: Science, Technology, and Socialist-Feminism in the Late Twentieth Century,’ in Simians, Cyborgs and Women: The Reinvention of Nature, Routledge, New York, 1991, p. 181.

[39]. http:/

[40]. Elise Boulding, The Underside of History: A View of Women through Time, Westview Press, Boulder, 1976; Elise Boulding, Women: The Fifth World, Foreign Policy Association, Headline series, 1980; Elise Boulding, Building a Global Civil Culture: Education for an Interdependent World, Teachers College Press, New York, 1988; Elise Boulding, Women in the Twentieth Century World, Sage Publications, New York, 1977.

[41]. Riane Eisler, The Chalice and the Blade: Our History, Our Future, HarperCollins Publishers, San Francisco, 1987; Riane Eisler, Sacred Pleasure, HarperCollins Publishers, San Francisco, 1996; Riane Eisler, `Cultural Shifts and Technological Phase Changes: The Patterns of History, The Subtext of Gender, and the Choices for Our Future’, in Johan Galtung and Sohail Inayatullah (eds.), Macrohistory and Macrohistorians, Praeger, New York, 1997.

[42]. Francis Bartkowski, Feminist Utopias, University of Nebraska Press, Lincoln, Nebr,. 1989; Debra Halbert, `Feminist Fabulation: Challenging the Boundaries of Fact and Fiction’, in The Manoa Journal of Fried and Half-Fried Ideas, Hawaii Research Center for Futures Studies, Honolulu, 1994.

[43]. Judith A Cook and Mary Margaret Fonow, `Knowledge and women’s interests: Issues of epistemology and methodology in feminist sociological research”, in Joyce McCarl Nielsen (ed.), Feminist Research Methods, Boulder, San Francisco, 1990.

[44]. Seminar, 460, December 1997, p. 13.