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Sample Paper—Philosophy Course*

The assignment, an in-class writing exam, comes from an Introductory to Philosophy class.  Students had read Bertrand Russell’s Marriage and Morals and had to write an essay about it during the class period.  This particular student was an International student from India who had been a U.S. college student for two years.  This was the exam question:  What are some of the events and beliefs that Bertrand Russell says provided the foundation for our patriarchal society?  

“Marriage and Morals” by Russel is viewed as a great and famous book.  In this book he talked about different cultural, traditions, society and marriages.  He mainly talked about patriarchal society, which means the male is the head of the family and female always considered below than male.  About his talked it seems to me like all civilized modern societies are based upon the patriarchal family, and the whole conception based of female virtue which has been built up in order to make the patriarchal family.  I believe that in patriarchal society mother and father have different expression and behavior for their child.  The relation of father and son in a patrilineal society is more closer than any relation between male which is exist in other society, and man inherits from his father.  I also believe this society is one kind of “primitive” society.  Because in this society a father (man) has everything means power, property, affection and the patriarchal family is more closely.  The main provided thing for patriarchal system is that man came to desire virginity in their brides.  Men has strongly feelings for this virginity.  A father has strong power over his children and wife, child could not marry without their father’s consent, and it was usual for the father to decide whom they should marry.  In sort, a woman has not period in her life for any independent existence because being above situation first to her father and then to her husband.  At last, patriarchal society provided as the DOMINION of the father.  

*This paper is taken from Crossing the Curriculum:  Multilingual Learners in College Classrooms, eds. Vivian Zamel and Ruth Spack (Earlbaum, 2004, p. 154.)

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