Knowledge, decisions, and responsibility
In contrast, today many push for people—particularly female ones—not to really learn the principles and derivations of halacha. The goal is not that one should know the halacha oneself but that one should know just enough to ask questions over every little thing. The ideal is not well-educated Jews who can independently do the right thing but Jews—particularly Jewesses—taught to be ignorant, so that they would be dependent on asking rabbinic authorities for any move.
Now, of course, there are times when real questions do arise, and a competent posek should be consulted. However, there are many, many more things that are not real questions. Their status has been established long ago and even recorded in sforim. In other words, they could be learned and internalized as they are not new questions. However, dependence is set up as an ideal because of an implicit fear that the female mind will mess up if left to her own devices.
“When women feel excluded from direct participation in society, they see themselves as subject to a consensus or judgment made and enforced by the men on whose protection and support they depend and by whose name they are known.” (Gilligan 67) So a patriarchy offers less individual control but more protection.
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