Duke It Out: Chivalry?

[It’s pretty obvious that the average CollegeCandy reader has some very strong opinions. Opinions that she likes to share with everyone on the site. We love a strong woman (unless she happens to be charging at us with her fists raised), so we thought we’d give her a real forum to discuss her thoughts, feelings, and perspectives. Every Friday I’ll be featuring a hot topic (like the sheer fashion trend!) and leaving it up to you, the readers, to duke it out. So, read it and get your debate on in the comments section below!]

Earlier this month, we were asking where chivalry had gone – and I’m down with that, I’d like to know where the little sucker slipped of to, too. But what I want to talk about now is, if chivalry is gone, do we really want it back? And should we expect it?

No matter how you slice it, chivalry always smacks of gender inequality. And yeah, it’s a lot harder to complain about inequality when you’re the one benefiting from it, but shouldn’t we still stand up against it? Are we hypocrites if we don’t? Add to that the fact that most of the little things we ascribe to the idea of chivalry (flowers, love tokens, professions of undying love) are all essentially just methods of winning over or even buying our affections. Isn’t that something that we in the post-feminist era should rebel against on principal?

We’ve fought for years to say that we’re just as good as men, that we shouldn’t be treated differently – and now, like it or not, this lack of chivalry is basically just guys treating us exactly like they treat each other. Hello, feminist victory here!

But at the end of the day, say what you like about feminism, we aren’t all the same. Genders are different, not better or worse, but different and we will always, in some ways, want and need to be treated differently. Beyond that even, when you really break it down, chivalry is a respect thing – it’s good when a guy will respect you enough to at least offer to pick up the tab at dinner or hold out a chair for you. I mean, ultimately, chivalry is as much manners as anything else, and what’s wrong with expecting a guys to have manners?! There’s nothing inequitable or anti-female about wanting and expecting a certain level of manners and courtesy!

OK, on one side, I’m a Southern girl and I was brought up with a definite emphasis on manners so chivalry has always been up there on my list of things a good guy should have. But, at the same time, I’m also a modern girl and I really don’t care who opens the door – if you get there first, open it – no big, right? Are these contradictory ideas? Can we really have our cake and eat it too?

What do you think ladies? Does the idea of chivalry just hold us back? Or are we taking the whole gender equality thing too far when we can’t even be treated special?

Duke it out!

Coupled. From the Other Side of the Coin
Coupled. From the Other Side of the Coin
  • 10614935101348454