Topic: 30. COERCION AND CONSENT

"Consent may be a defense to a crime if the victim has the capacity to consent and if the consent negates an element of the crime or thwarts the harm that the law seeks to prevent....  The consent [to a contract] is none the less 'genuine' and 'real.' even though it be induced by fraud, mistake, or duress... See Model Penal Code #2.11"   (Black's Law Dictionary, p. 322)

I.
Relations between human beings in a "state of nature" were almost always coercive.  In saying this we are following a path once blazed by Rousseau; only here we are taking different steps.  Like Rousseau, too, we search for a reason why human beings, beginning as typically coercive and combative animals, embarked upon the "social" path of consent and cooperation.  A Rousseauian generalization is the best we can provide right now.  That is, the human being learned he could gain much of what he needed and wanted by getting such goods from other human beings.  He tended to turn to humans, rather than to nature, to provide for himself.  We may state with confidence, categorically, that he did not profess friendship towards other human groups due to some "moral instinct" or "sense of justice."  These high moral purposes do not really exist except in the human imagination.  Rather, it is through self-interest that humans entered into trade and reciprocal relations with other humans.  An observation may be made now that perhaps Engels himself,  in the spirit of his "materialism," would suggest.  That is, what brought humans together was something we may call the alienable commodity.  This material thing is of human acquisition or production, either way, but, coming about through human effort, and falling into the hands first of some humans but not others, it (the commodity) was alienable;  it could pass out of the hands of an original possessor and into the hands of a second possessor (and on and on).  Other qualities of a commodity are that it is transferable and transportable. 

So, things passed from person to person, group to group.  People became dependent on these goods and therefore dependent, too, on their neighbors.  Trade promoted "friendship" and finally "society."   But there is more.  What held humans together, the transferable and alienable commodity, was both "material" and non-human.  The effect of trade of commodities was to create a new level of human existence that, paradoxically, was not in itself human.  Such a transcendence of the human being by a human-produced "other" has been the topic of Hegelian philosophy. 

I said earlier, consistent with the approach of Philosophical Anthropology, in describing the homely details of a band of hunter/gatherers.  These people had no idea of their own species.   For them there was only "the People," that is themselves.   All persons outside the territorial (or "centered," as we speak here) unit were strangers and enemies; and the relations between themselves and these strange neighbors was coercive.  All issues between them--and there were only disagreements, never agreements--were settled by brute force.   There were matings and even marriages between humans of different bands; but these were achieved partly through force or, as we say, "rape."  Brides were taken as booty.  Human beings, taken in slavery, may have been history's first property; the possession of them constituted wealth.  The point to be made here is that the dynamics of continuity and change within a species were the same for humans as for other animals.  There was competition between groups, matings were between individuals close to home, with little contact or knowledge of humans more than a few miles away.  With the advent of language, on the other hand, a scarce 500,000 years ago, new possibilities appeared.  Knowledge of the human species widened.  I talked earlier of language as a universal phenomenon among humans; individual language differences were a minor obstacle.  Along with language there appeared trade.  We can now trace trade routes that extended across great areas of the world, sometimes more than a thousand miles through Europe, America and Asia.

Language appeared.  I may repeat what I said earlier, somewhere, perhaps in my Philtalk writing, that language brought together humans who were strangers to one another.  This relationship--between humans of diverse groups--was the original context of language.  People did not need language, particularly, communicating among themselves.  Gradually of course, especially among male hunters, language was useful.  Language had begun to appear among them, perhaps, before trade appeared among distant groups; such an ability as language would allow plan a hunt in advance of the hunt itself.    Where language was vital, however, was in trade.  We may understand language as an epiphenomenon of material goods of trade.  Language was originally a sort of calculous, if you will, or abstract equating, relevant to the mutually agreeable transfer of goods from one person or group to another.  I have covered this material earlier.  Ultimately--and here we have finally written documents from thousands of years ago to support our argument--there appeared a notion of the human species as a whole.  At first, the human species or "humanity" was simply a description of the outside limits of the universal trade relations.  Humans were defined as beings with whom one could trade.  This is the first human exposure to the species of which the person is a member.  We would do well, on the other hand, to remember the origin and genesis of the idea of the human species.  Such a unit is first and foremost not a unit of nature, as such, but is an artificial construct that assists a "material" purpose.    Society itself as a "moral" concept--as something humans "should" aspire to--came into existence in the context of human material interdependency.

Gradually there emerged a human idea of the human species as a whole.  It was slow in coming.  Technological advances in transportation assisted this knowledge.  Humans understood the human species as a whole.  Through language and trade, furthermore, they have attempted to build a society--an artificial order--upon this otherwise biological concept.  The human species, on the other hand, remains an artificial concept.  The species is "fact" so long as we consider humans a species among other species of animals.  The human species, or so-called "humanity," is, on the other hand, a pure theory insofar as any relationship is implied in this concept.  Humanity is a "theory" that, in fact, may benefit humans materially through a complex division of labor, in the same way that any group, by virtue of more members, can leverage their technical abilities.  We have spoken of these issues earlier.  But there is more.  The way the species is creative is in its own dynamic principle, wherein, through race the former species is replaced by a new species.  It is of this principle we must think now when we propose a "society" of the future.  The relations between humans, consistent with the forces of nature, must be coercive.  Coercion defines one human identity as opposed to the other.  Species is a separation from other species, but not as such an opposition.   Race on the other hand, as a principle, is an active opposition.  We are left with the paradox that, from the perspective of nature and evolution, the society--here altering our definition of society as simply an order of humans--that is coercive favors the race over the species.  The species, in Nietzsche's words, is something that will be transcended.  The mode of relationship that carries this principle forward is coercion.

Last edited by richard_swartzbaugh (2010-03-03 19:15:47)

Re: 30. COERCION AND CONSENT

II.
We now confront one word--consent--that expresses what we have to say here.  I am going out on a limb on a question which is not precisely in my area of expertise--legal theory.    I am saying that perhaps there is one word or paragraph that, more than any other, sumarizes the modern political and social point of view of Western Man.  Law has long been the way of my ancestors.  I have always respected law and the legal way of talking and thinking.  Lawyers reduce important issues to simple and expeditious ideas.    Lawyers especially in talking among themselves really do often tell a kind truth on urgent matters and in a way devoid of our more familiar moralizing.    Humans are mostly exhorted with the words equality, freedom and democracy.  I was suddenly faced in this blog to deal with consent as what appeared to be a central issue of Force Theory, only to learn, just as suddenly, that consent is an issue in law.  There is surely going to be a meeting of minds here.  But there is more.  We turn to law at this point for a clue regarding the secret of democracy.   The vagueness of the words freedom and equality, words by which we are admonished to live,  compells us to look behind them, to law,  for some other word, a clue, that reveals their meanings.  I have written this blog for more than a year without happening upon anything more central than the Blackwell Law Dictionary statement on "consent."  I reproduce this statement here.  "Consent is an affirmative defense to assault, battery, and related torts, as well as such torts as defamation, invasion of privacy, vonversion, and tresspass.  Consent may be a defense to a crime if the victim has the capacity to consent..." (p. 322)  My purpose will be to expand on this paragraph; it would be appropriate to write a whole book on it.   The point of view of Western democracy is that each person, in being directed to do a  certain action shall, in advance of such action, give his free consent.  So, if I am told to do something, I need not do this thing until I have consented.  This right that I have constitutes my freedom and, by inference, also my equality within a democracy.   Were I not to freely give my consent to do some act--were I coerced to do it contrary to my free will--then I would have some "right" to recourse against the coercing force.  I could, say, in theory, rightfully challenge the government or police.  Having given consent, on the other hand, my situation is entirely different. 

Where the modern notion of consent comes from is still an open question.  The idea may be buried in our paleolithic past; it would not necessarily come first from, say, Natural Law or modern democratic theory.  What "consent" says is, essentially, that what position the person may "rightfully" take in regard to any action that favors or harms him is determined by whether or not he has given free consent.  Examples are plentiful and clear.  If I consent to a person hitting me, then I cannot make a legal (criminal) complaint against him for battery.  I agreed to being hit, so his action is (usually) not a crime.  This is obvious.  The basic principle of consent becomes clouded by the more complex interactions that humans have.  This is especially true in the case of fraud.  In fraud I am lied to and believe the lie told me; and on the basis of that belief  I give my free consent.  It is true I have been lied to, but now, by giving consent, I am actually complicit to a high degree in the action against me.  It is determined in the court proceeding that follows that I did give my consent.  Were it assumed that I did not give consent, I would not be defrauded so much as stolen from.  The act against me would be theft.  Theft by definition would be a crime, under law; and punishable under the criminal code.  A the fraud--or lie--would be possibly be a civil matter.  Such a fraud, assuming I had given consent, would be actionable only in civil court and would not evoke any action from the state.  From what we have said before we move logically and inevitably to the much larger issue of government and the rights of citizens.   What modern government does--and here we are at the center of democratic theory--is to stand in relation to citizens not of a criminal but of a defrauder.  A defrauder is one who gets the consent of his (or its) victim.  Dictatorship is guilty of coercion.  Democracy for its part stands charged with the lesser, non-criminal offense of fraud.  Democracy always asks for, and gets, consent.   The whole object of democracy is to get the freely given consent of its citizens.  Democracy's modus operendi, on the other hand, is fraud.

The purely philosophical issue of free will does not have to come up here.  This would sink our essay in heavy metaphysics.   If such a ponderous issue does not have to come up, I won't raise it.   Philosophical Anthropology has been successful partly in not unnecessarily raising heavy metaphysical issues..  Thus if we are looking for an anthropological context of consent we look, logically, to the aforementioned hunting situation that occupied our remote ancestors.  We see consent here as a human phenomenon.  Animals do not consent, precisely, or we do not think they do.  An animal in a conflict may simply give up.  But this animal's surrender is coerced.  In the case of human beings it may be otherwise.   The premise of (human) consent is obviously something we may call free will or freedom of choice; but by that we mean only that the person, having to consider a proposition before him, may say yes or no. We do not need to speculate on the person's motives for answering one way or the other, or know what is "driving" him.  On our present level of analysis we are not yet "determinists" but are rather making a statement on "free will."  Free will is a legitimate concept, so far as we are concerned, so long as the context of a decision is understood.    A person here is not forced into any action or restraint from action.  It is proper to say he exercises his free will.  So far we are talking on the level of fact, not speculation.  But there is more.  We still have not yet said what consent is, or what may be the same, in what primal situation consent arose.  Why would consent be of special value to human beings in the way they once lived?

The problem is considerable.  Consent is a relaxation of natural defenses in a situation where another person takes an initiative.  One person, the initiator, is now the leader and the consenter is the follower.   Consent is  a certain "unnatural" passivity that human beings often have but animals do not.    What consent means, it is suggested now, is that the person has allowed some other person to take initiative and a leadership role.   Meanwhile, however, the consenting person still retains a certain integrity--or self-sufficiency--that establishes him as inter pares in relation to the leader.   I want to say here that consent means that, while leadership is accepted on one specific matter, there is a two-sided understanding--between leader and follower--that the follower may exercise free choice in other, unrelated matters.  So, the follower is a follower only in this one instance; but there are other instances foreseen in which the person may not volunteer to follow.  I suggest that the higher intelligence of the human being allows him to distinguish between different actions and different situations; such intelligence also foresees future interactions where leadership is an open question.  In other words, consession here is a surrender on a specific matter, while keeping open the question of general leadership.  One "concedes the point," as I admit sometimes I am wrong.  But that does not mean, I am saying, I am wrong all the time.  It is the higher mentality that allows the human being to make these fine discriminations.  Also such fine distinctions characterize the Western citizen from the third-world lacky.  The African "Big Man" concept, which is at the center of all Negro politics, is an idea remote from our own practice.   

We are close to answering an important question of society.  But we still have not said anything about human relations on the level of race.   Consent first appeared in human evolution at the level of hunting and gathering societies.  Or, what is the same, consent appeared as a relationship between a limited number of persons, perhaps no more than four or five.  Consent as a concept applied to a mass democracy is virtually meaningless.  In fact, democracies, truly understanding the psychological and evolutional importance of consent, do their best to obfuscate the issue.  In this spirit they introduce highly artificial and misleading concepts such as "general consent."   The implication of general consent is that, because someone in my past agreed to a doctrine of so-called "equal rights," I agree--or consent--to it also.

Last edited by richard_swartzbaugh (2010-03-01 15:48:58)

Re: 30. COERCION AND CONSENT

III.
"In the simplest sense, democracy is rule by the ruled."[US History Encyclopedia: Democracy (Answers.com/topic/democracy)

Marriage is no less slavery than the unilateral slavery that preceded marriage.   Marriage simply adds an additional layer or dimension to the already existing practice of slavery--the idea, in other words, that not only does a man own a woman, but that woman simultaneously owns the man.

We must at this point distinguish between conditional and unconditional ownership.  Conditional ownership would be control of or power over a thing with the consent of persons other than the principal owner.  Persons consenting to this ownership are not formally declared actual owners; they do not originally exercise joint ownership.   On the other hand, persons giving consent to ownership may step in, and exercise control of the owned thing, when such terms of primary ownership are violated.  So, for instance, the city may take possession of a house that violates city codes (and so forth).

The conditions (formal terms of ownership) in a democracy, an ownership by the people of the ruler, and a simultaneous ownership of the people by the ruler, are no less onerous than unilateral slavery (say, of the Old South).  The fact that the rulers are ruled means essentially they are slaves.  We cannot escape this paradox.  The distinction between democracy and formal slavery is that democracy is a two-sided ownership; formal slavery is one-sided.  Thus both the ruled and ruler are oppressed as slaves.

Slavery in the Old South was more or less conditional ownership.  For one thing, slaves were often heavily mortgaged; so that the bank had an interest in the slaves.  From the bank's standpoint, the slaves should be kept healthy in the event that they be foreclosed upon.

We pass to the institution of marriage.  Here too there are rules--conditions--of ownership.  The first has already been talked about--the rule of thumb.  A man cannot hit his wife, in this common law principle, with an object larger than the thumb.  The rules that there are in marriage go to the issue of violence.  Battery is one of two grounds of divorce in Illinois (the other being dissapation of funds).

We are saying that conditions of ownership do not alter the essential slavery of an institution.  Democracy decries slavery, yet democracy allows marriage.  Democracy is itself slavery--a mutual enslavement by ruler and ruled, but under conditions not less onerous than those that characterized the original human practice of man/woman slavery. 



"Materialism"--by which we mean getting what one needs from other people--is what we now call species-affirming.  That is,  one affirms those persons, universally, with whom one trades.  The goods that are traded are species goods, or things which all humans, universally, can use.   I make something for you that I could use, but you could use it too--we are the same!   The possession of such a consumer thing affirms a person in his capacity as a universal human being.  I talked earlier about an agreement--and this would first and foremost be an agreement in trade--as a relationship of equality.  That is true.   All sides in a trade benefit according to the terms of trade, and benefit equally from that trade.  So, in other words, if the Japanese are our trade partners, their effort in the trade affirms themselves; while we for our part are equally affirmed.  I have earlier described trade--and the language that makes trade possible--as "utopian."  In the language of the individual trade relationship there is only the slightest hint of friction.  Lurking, of course, is the thought that either side could defraud the other.   I have talked before about the growth of individual social structures for the purpose of resolving such issues.

I want to say that the relationship is entered into by consent, or a voluntary and also signaled or stated relinquishing of the natural or spontaneous contrariness that infects most human relationships.  There is a ritual of consent that is universal and knows no cultural boundaries.  I talked about the handshake--the showing of a weaponless hand--as signalling consent.  These were matters I talked about earlier in my sections on agreements.  We are covering this territory here.  But there is more.  We also are going beyond our earlier discussion in raising the issue of the human species as a universal "trade partners."  We are asking where in the first place the notion of a "human species" came from. We know that the idea of a human species did not appear as a result of simple observation; it came about as a consequence of the kinds of interactions humans had with one another through trade and language.  We conclude that, while such a thing as a biological human species exists, the species in the minds of most persons in a practical or materialistic capacity--which includes most of what humans do--is an artifical construct.  Its main element or binding thought is--human trade and reciprocity.   The basis of the common, layman's idea of the human species is usefulness and the thought, as I already said, that what one needs one gets from other "human beings."  This thought that is the basis of trade is also the basis of society as we understand the word. Where the bonds of trade extend, the outer limits of trade routes, there is society and, in effect, "human society."

Wars and such disputes mean little or virtually nothing in the context of the species and evolution.  Wars are largely over trade disputes; they are not arguments about society or the (artificial) human species, but are about small practical things.  Some people think they should be richer than they are.  But this is trivial.  In the broader scope of life, and in particular the relation between the race and species, there are other evolutional dynamics at work in the face of which issues of man are insignificant.  Evolution, finally, whether of humans or other animals, transpires in a (compared to human affairs) monumental struggle between race and species.  Therefore, what affirms the species--and we are talking about society as presently constituted--opposes the race.  The race, on the other hand, is the creative force of nature.

Re: 30. COERCION AND CONSENT

IV.
Marriage is an exclusive relationship.  We can think of marriage as as much an act of separation as an act of inclusion.  As such, marriage is inherently racist.  Marriage is a selection and an exclusion, both, that produces a distinct type of human being.  Promiscuity, which is species-affirming, is negated through marriage.   Much was said by Engels (following Fourier) about marriage as an extension of slavery.  There is some truth in that idea.  Where we lay emphasis here, on the other hand, is on the fact that in marriage there is an actual choice that passes over other possible choices.  When one partner is chosen, other possible partners are excluded.  This selectiveness and exclusiveness ripples through the entire species and results in racial formation.  Such formation occurs in the context of larger social institutions; so that, where society brings humans together promiscuously, marriage separates them racially.   This issue has been considered before and forms the central core of speculation in vitalistic and "romantic" German philosophy.  There is, as Schopenhauer suggested, in the consenting connection between an individual male and female human, a vision of the person who will be borne out of that connection.  We may speculate on the meaning of this individual relationship as a general kind of human institution.  We know, for instance, that the male-female division of labor was the basic human institution that has carried into modern times.  It is precisely in marriage, then, that the connection is visible between the forces of man--or social institutions--and the forces of nature.  We see in this individual relation between male and female human being--so long as the relation is individual--both the form of future society and, as a creation of nature, a new type of human being.  Promiscuity, or random mating, produces the opposite effect.  Promiscuity affirms the species as a whole but in its past, inert form.  Promiscuity is in these terms an expression of decadence.

I face having to deal with the issue that is the weakest link, precisely, of Force Theory.  But in spending my time this way I only call attention to the problem.  This is where this discussion stands now.  This is the problem a military general faces in arranging his troops:  that the thing that needs most attention is the weakest part of the strategy.  It is here, in this weakest link of the chain, that things are most likely go wrong and where the army is most likely to be defeated.  That is my problem here.  That weakest link I have already pointed out.  We aspire to build programs for human action when any human program, or institution, as we have defined these words, runs contrary to our final objective. It is well to be honest.  It will be understood almost as an understatement to suggest that racism bears a special burden of proof.  We need to bear that burden, and do so not merely in order to distract an enemy from what is obviously their strongest point.  The enemy is positive:  it says simply--and simplicity is an advantage--that we must or should build strong social institutions.  We too in Force Theory want to be positive.   We want to suggest strong, race-affirming institutions, when, on the other hand, social institutions are defined as inherently anti-racist.   As we commonly define social institutions this is true.   Racism is a form of anarchism or anti-social ideology akin, on some levels, to crime and sociopathic behavior.  This truth comes from every corner of academia and religion, where I have heard it all my life.   Racism--or "hate"--is in fact defined as a crime under the present order of society.  It is a crime now on the law books.  We have no choice, under the structure and terms of racist New Force Theory but to agree with this common assessment.  Racism is "institutionally" a crime and could never be considered anything else given the premise that society, as we have defined the word, is structured in a way that racism is counter-social; that racism attacks the basis of society.  Our strategy at present is a simple one.  We mean here simply to redefine society. 

I introduce here what I aver to be an original sociological concept:  that of a "counter-institution."  What I mean is simple.  A given social institution will engender, finally, an institution which is counter-social.  This notion is consistent with Hegelianism.  The counter-institution corrects any anti-life, anti-nature bias that a "human" institution may have.  Even as institutions bestow an advantage on human life, they may oppose the creative process of life.  All sociology--as well as moral science--says at present is that individuality of person or race is counter-social.  That is only to say society creates its own laws and moral standards which favor society itself.  Force Theory opposes society for the reason that society opposes life.  The contradiction of race (essentially, nature) and society resolves itself, ultimately, in the idea of a counter-institution.  Such a reality--or "dialectic"--had set in already at the level of hunting and gathering peoples, who understood, in practice, the opposition of their practices with the nature around--and within--themselves.  Next section I will elaborate on the principle stated here.  At the moment it will suffice to derive the institution known as modern marriage from an overall human disposition to leverage personal human traits through impersonal and abstract extensions (technics and slavery).

In earlier sections, in the tradition of Philosophical Anthropology, I discussed the human propensity for tool use.  The human being distinguishes himself radically from other animals.  A tool is essentially an object taken from the human's surroundings, but in itself not human or even living.  Once tool use had appeared as a mode of life, intelligence appeared, too, as an enhancement of technics.  The upward spiral of intelligence and tool use had begun.  But there is more.  I said earlier that, even as the stick is an extension of the human arm, and leverages that arm, the slave--a human being--is an extension of the stick.  The slave completes the stick as the stick completes the human.  The era had begun wherein a human being could leveage his personality and needs through the impersonal agents of the stick and slave.  Masculinity is a case in point.  Masculinity or male self-assertiveness could once be achieved through the size and strength of the male; now it was accomplished by technological prowess.  Even among apes, sometimes, dominance within the group is achieved when a male waves a stick, intimidating the other apes.  Human beings are no different.  And, of course, among the humans that were "at hand," the closest were the women and these were the people who fell into this male trap.  With technology, male dominance rose--and we may say rose unnaturally--to a potentially destructive level. 

I talked about slavery.  In fact, organized slavery in which some men enslaved other men, and on a large scale, came later in human culture.  The first slaves may indeed have been women.  We might say that women were the first slaves; but we might say equally they were property, regimented by virtue of male technical prowess.  Men were the ones with weapons.  But there is more.  I called this male-technological dominance unnatural.  That is true.   Through  this rise in male status, and corresponding lowering of female status,  the basic place of the human species in nature, in relation to human surroundings, was potentially compromised and upset.  Human beings were, through this change in relations between men and women, maladapted.  We have to stress the fact that humans are successful not simply because of the relations they have, through technics, but because of the relations they have among themselves.  The male-female division of labor is vital to human survival.  The female contribution to the group was not only in her ability as a gatherer and nurturer of children; she always had a leadership role in the group.  The status of women--that it be a high status roughtly equal (depending on certain external circumstances--was vital to group viability.  We have suggested this earlier.  As women's status fell, however, as men acquired technology and were able to reduce women to men's property, the familial group as a whole fell into a state of demoralization.  This had to be corrected.  I suggest that the correction to this fall in morale was the instution of marriage.  In marriage, in other words, not only do men own women, as they did before, but women own men.  This may be a symbolic ownership.  On the other hand, marriage signals the strength of women and their role in society.

Last edited by richard_swartzbaugh (2010-03-06 16:02:16)

Re: 30. COERCION AND CONSENT

V.
We may suggest that the history of civilization is the history of marriage.  I will try to give this proposition sme weight .  The idea is simple.  Marriage, we suggest, grew out of slavery.  Historically, marriage follows slavery.  It is reasonable to suppose, as we do here, that the institution we call marriage in the modern sense is a correction or, as we say, a counter-institution to the wide practice of considering women property.  Human control of humans is impersonal and cultural; such control is an abstract relationship that derives from general abstract behavior of which the human being is capable.  Tool use and technology is another example of "ownership," as is formal property.   Marriage reflects the fact that the relationship between male and female had, at some point--along with the disposition of slavery in general--fallen into this impersonal and abstract mode.   At an early period, when items of property were few and primitive, women became a man's main store of wealth.  This is true in primitive societies where a man is rich according to the number of wives that he has.  This is well documented in anthropology.  What we are saying is that in marriage, in other words, the husband owns the wife, of course, as before; but also the wife owns the husband.  We suggest that the practice of slavery or ownership of persons by other persons did not end with marriage, but, by adding one more institution--the ownership of a husband by a wife--is "corrected."  That is, the human institution of slavery is made compatible with the overall biological demands of "nature," the reproduction of the biological type and the furtherance of the creative goals of the race.

To understand marriage is to understand society.  Throughout this blog I have discussed marriage as a central issue of Force Theory; now we will attempt to connect this institution with the broader issue of society.  The bond of man and woman within marriage was, we are suggesting,  the first true human society and the one which, now a specific institution within a larger society, endures to the present day. There is today more to society than marriage; society however began with marriage and retains within itself the essential idea of marriage.    It is not surprising that marriage is the stubborn and persistant preference of Western civilization. I will argue that this institution is central to this culture and, without it, the culture would disappear.  What man and woman once created between themselves developed, in ascending levels of complexity, into all the refinements of human society.    We agree that marriage exists elsewhere; but it is within our own culture that we focus attention.  I want also to call attention to socialist theories of marriage, of Fourier and Engels; their connection of marriage with slavery seems to me correct.  I do believe that marriage is derived from slavery and, indeed, required slavery as a prior stage of culture.  Marriage exists to correct the distortions of culture.  The primary distortion of culture that is our focus here is slavery, or the impersonal leveraging of personal needs of the human individual.  This distortion was originally the enslavement of women by men, by virtue of the male prominence in weaponry and technology.  But there is more.  Marriage resolved the first historical instance of slavery.  But there  appeared more slavery and on a wider human basis, with the first complex human organization based on the dominance, through weaponry, of one group by another.  I have talked here frequently about slavery in the Old South.  That slavery became obsolete; what intervened, in the meantime, was a sort of "marriage" between black and white people.  I see no reason not to attribute the same arrangement to other groups throughout the world, where technical and power inbalance has demanded some sort of "reconciliation" or "mediation" that emulates or mimics the original marriage ceremony between and individual man and woman.

I talked earlier of the human's technological capacity.  The stick is the human being's first tool.  This was the general point of section 19, Philosophical Anthropology.  The mere stick by itself is useful for a very few actions.  Thrust, the stick is a spear to kill an animal or as a weapon in war with other humans.  The stick could be a club.  Those actions of which a person was capable could be leveraged through the extension of the stick.  I set forth the general idea that the "stick completes the arm and hand."  These things have all been said before by Philosophical Anthropologists.   In any case, as an instrument of human self-expression--in the fulfillment of the wide range of needs that a human being has--the stick was highly limited.  Where Force Theory enters the discussion the concept of the stick takes on new significance.  I said that, while the stick completes the arm, the slave completes the stick.  We see the action of a human being, first and foremost, as that action by which the human's needs are satisfied.  With arms, hands, legs, eyes, a brain and so forth, the human being is one to best satisfy his own needs.  I speak in a highly general way.  But there is more.  The human being is one to best satisfy the needs of some other person.  I will try to speak in more detail.  A horse is capable of several things--strength in pulling, speed in running--but a horse is not capable of the delicate acts of servitude that a fellow human being is capable of.  A human being is best served in a general way by a fellow human being.  The animal servant extends only legs, say, or strength; the human for his part does not merely extend this trait or that, but duplicates the whole human organism and thereby acts, or can act, to duplicate the functions of another human.    A man is best served by a man.  A woman is best served by a woman.   The human being is also capable of understanding detailed requests and commands.  A horse or dog is comparatively stupid.  These considerations did not evade early human beings, who saw in a fellow human the possibility of an extention of their own self-serving actions.  This notion of self-serving action leveraged through humans may have antedated tools and technology as such.  Tools in themselves are prosaic things that may have not seemed too interesting.  The real interest in the new tools was rather in their "social" possibilities.   Nonetheless, the earliest tools, at first just sticks, opened new avenues of interaction with other members of their groups.  Even before use of tools for simple tasks, as in hunting, they may have offered a prospect of turning other human beings into property and slaves.  Technology, although represented by most anthropologists of simple agents of hunting, gathering and other menial things--appropriate to small, primitive bands of humans--may have been first applied to members the group to coerce a general servitude to others.  This I have already said.  First women were the object of tool-use, as property and slaves.  The important consideration at this point, and one at the basis of Force Theory, is that in correcting the over-dominance of tool-adept males, the contravaling principle of marriage simply carried the overall male disposition to use leveraged force to a new level.  Women asserted themselves.  Women declared themselves now as owners of individual men.  Men were now "husbands."  But the principle that had set in at the outset of the Paleolithic period--that of using leveraged force in relationships--was continued in an ascending spiral.  The next phase of human culture was slavery properly speaking.

Even as the limited familial group was set in balance--as women reasserted themselves by declaring men "husbands"--the basic mentality of tool use continued in relations among humans around the band.  I said earlier that the first tools may have been intended for use in relation to human beings, not toward impersonal nature.  The first weapon, we are saying, may have not been used in the hunt but in an attempt to intimidate some person close at hand.  In this intention was the first glimer of what we call society, which was born out of and is constituted through force and coercion.  To use a tool to turn over a rock, say, or to rout out some little scurrying animal, was a purpose too prosaic and uninteresting for the first tool maker.  Early on this man was already trying, through coercion, to organize a whole society that served his own purposes.  This sort of mentality became programed into human behavior as instinct.  There was the danger of a total demoralizing effect of the depersonalization of human relations through the agent of the stick alone.  The male attempt to subdue females as property and slaves failed, in effect. 

Males in relation to females were both masters and slaves.  The mentality of this relationship is carried into the present day.    ("You belong to me; I belong to you," in the words of a song.)This two-sided relationship of mutual coercion should be discussed.  It might be possible to say that there still was control.  It is logical, we admit, that men should control women in some absolute way; while women control men in some absolute way.  But the sexes cannot control one another in the same way.  Without opening this discussion to a long a prolux speculaltion we may go on to assume that control twarts counter control.  That is, if women think they are too controled, they will move--through the authority they have--to blunt this control. What we are saying [and we will have more to say on this] is that at some point the technological agents of social control were turned, finally, from within the family group to outside it.  Neighboring hunting bands became targets for slaving mauraders.

Last edited by richard_swartzbaugh (2010-03-08 15:29:59)