MRAs regularly accuse feminists of promoting the idea that all women are “perfect princesses” who can do no wrong. Which is a rather silly accusation, as every feminist I’ve ever met is well aware that women, like men, are capable of vast evil. Jiang Qing, also known as Madame Mao, was one of the ringleaders behind China’s bloody Cultural Revolution. Madame Delphine Lalaurie was a 19th century New Orleans socialite who tortured her slaves and performed bizarre medical experiments on them. And then there were Ilse Koch, the “Witch of Buchenwald,” and her counterpart Irma Grese, the “Bitch of Belsen,” sadistic Nazis who tormented the prisoners under their charge and kept grisly “souveniers.” (For more on them and other truly evil women see here and here.)
But today I’m going to talk about some women who aren’t so much evil as retrograde and wrong: the 800 women who have reportedly joined the newly formed Obedient Wives Club in Malaysia, an offshoot of a fundamentalist Islamic organization called Global Ikhwan, previously known for its Polygamy Club.
If you set aside the whole fundamentalist Islam thing — MRAs by and large don’t seem terribly fond of Islam — these Obedient Wives would pretty much represent the ideal women for manosphere misogynists; much of what they profess sounds like it came straight from discussions on The Spearhead or one of the popular MGTOW forums.
According to the Obedient Wives, for example, “disobedient wives are the cause for upheaval in this world” — including social ills like domestic abuse. As one spokeswoman for the group sees it, “domestic abuse happens because wives don’t obey their husband.” Asked by the newspaper The Star if this meant that a wife was at fault if she was abused, the spokeswoman replied with a “yes,” because “most probably … she didn’t listen to her husband.”
But it’s the group’s pronouncements about sex that have caused the most controversy in Malaysia. Apparently Obedient Wives need to be sexual dynamos as well as submissive helpmeets, eager and willing to “obey, serve and entertain” their husbands “better than a first-class prostitute” can. As one of the group’s founders put it at the event heralding the formation of the Obedient Wives,
Sex is a taboo in Asian society. We have ignored it in our marriages but it’s all down to sex. A good wife is a good sex worker to her husband. What is wrong with being a whore … to your husband?
Several days later, another Obedient Wives Club spokeswoman attempted to “clarify” these remarks in an interview with the Malay Mail:
I believe we have been misunderstood and misinterpreted. When we said that husbands should treat their wives like first-class prostitutes, we were not putting wives on the same level with prostitutes. We are talking about first-class elite types, not street hooker types.
So that’s … good, I guess? Although we should point out that actual prostitutes in Malaysia – even those working at “high end” clubs — are treated like shit.
Before all the “American-Women-Suck” dudes reading this convert to Islam and buy one-way plane tickets to Malaysia, I would like to note that there are feminists in Malaysia who think these women (and the men Involved in starting the group) are full of it. Islamic feminists, even.