OGH All blog posts

Feb 09
Alternative Americas

Take as example – Iron Butterfly.

How strange, now, to listen to this American music, compared to today’s developments. How strange to hear so much relevant about today, even long before.

Try “In the time of our lives”, “Filled with fear”, and “Real fright”. Check “Unconscious power” on their first album Heavy, and “Possession” (avoid the repeated-to-death “In a gadda da vida”).

These are songs from the counter culture, way back when. It did not win the agenda. Still, interesting listening. Sometimes even more relevant today.

Feb 03
Democracy on the defensive

Democracy is on the defensive, in the world today. Not only is the proportion of authoritarian and totalitarian countries growing, but the dissatisfaction with democracy in democratic or semi-democratic countries is growing too.

A new report based on public opinion surveys shows the growing dissatisfaction with democracy in many parts of world. Except for a fairly small group of countries, mainly in the European north, many democratic countries show a decline in satisfaction with democracy over the last years. Notable cases include the US, Brazil and the UK.

A brief news report here: https://www.bbc.com/news/education-51281722

More on the method here: https://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2020-01/uoc-gdw012720.php

Full report here: https://www.bennettinstitute.cam.ac.uk/publications/global-satisfaction-democracy-report-2020/

The report discusses institutional and other factors behind the decline in support for (or trust in) democracy.

Surprisingly, gender equality is not mentioned as a background factor, even though many countries on the top of the list, with the largest satisfaction with democracy, are also on the top of the global gender equality indexes, like Norway, Denmark, Finland and Sweden. (Cf http://www3.weforum.org/docs/WEF_GGGR_2020.pdf )

The top performing group in this study is a mix of gender equality and economic benefit, it seems, including Switzerland and Luxembourg (cf report figure 6), but the correlation with high levels of gender equality is very noticeable – and yet not noted in the report.

Gender equality is probably strongly associated with well-functioning democracy in today’s world. It is a cause, not just an effect, of democratization. It is an integral part of democratization as research pioneer Ronald Inglehart (in his paper Gender Equality and Democracy) noted twenty years ago. Gender equality helps pave the way for democracy and helps extend its meaning from formal measures to real changes towards a fair society, working for all.  Gender equality is associated with better life quality, for men as well as women, controlling for economic level and income distribution (see Read more, below). Today, gender equality is a “filter” against build-up of social inequality and social conflict. Its not perfect, but it is there.

The importance of gender and gender equality has been neglected in many areas including democracy research. This needs to be changed – we need more research on this key link.

Read more:

Holter, Øystein Gullvåg 2014:
“What’s in it for Men?”: Old Question, New Data
Men and Masculinities 17(5), 515-548


Oct 19
Alternative capitalisms

A new capitalism analysis?

Yes, new capitalism analyses do appear. Although fairly rarely, maybe. It is not just the old stuff on how capitalism is bad – or good. Not just the old black and white treatment.

Two fairly recent examples include Richard Wilkinson and Kate Pickett: The Spirit Level (2010), and Thomas Pikketty: Capital in the Twenty-First Century (2014). Both works created a lot of scientific debate. Instead of condemning or praising capitalism in general terms, these pioneer studies went into the empirical terrain – what actually happens, in capitalist economy, viewed from our own time.

Both books have the merit of a clear empirical hypothesis, and a theory updated around that central fact. In the case of The Spirit Level, the central empirical fact or pattern is the build-up of psychological and health costs related to capitalism, or at least, some very hardline or competetive forms of capitalism. In essence, there are good psychological and health reasons to avoid too much or too hard capitalism. The fallouts and dysfunctions are bad not just for those who fall out of the system, but for the system also, including the upper class.

Pikketty’s argument is more detail-focused. He goes into one highly significant “detail”, the percent of the total product value taken out by the owners of the production process. He finds a clear historical tendency – the share given to owners is rising, and the rise is notable in the period from the 1980s-today.  From the conclusion:

“A market economy left to itself … contains powerful forces of divergence …… the principal destabilizing force has to do with the fact that the private rate of return on capital, r, can be significantly higher for long periods of time than the rate of growth of income and output, g. The inequality r > g implies that the wealth accumulated in the past grows more rapidly than output and wages. (…)  The entrepeneur inevitably tends to become a rentier, more and more dominant over those who own nothing but their labor ( p 571).

There are different ways to interpret this, but there seems to be little doubt that the new findings give a fairly historically correct picture.  Pikketty’s “facts” are even more broadly acknowledged than those of Wilson and Pickett.

None of these works highlight gender discrimination as such, although it is mentioned in The Spirit Level.

Gender equality is assumed to be a fairly peripheral factor, which is a mistake, in my judgement of the state of the research, including my own studies.

Instead, the main discrimination factor is social class or status – rather than gender, ethnicity, or sexuality.

The empirical message seems strong, but I would like it to be tested for control variables like gender equality.

The main message of Wilkinson and Pickett, and of Piketty, is that more social class divides will create more problems. Although starting from different disciplines and problem formulations, the two projects converge in their analysis – which is significant, I think.

Beyond these empirically oriented works, I have a lot of “imaginative” books on capitalism, in the bookshelf by my desk. Like; “How will capitalism end” by Wolfgang Streeck. Hardt and Negri: “Empire”, and books on the follow up debate. In my bookshelf, Steven Lukes: Power: A  Radical View, sits besides Judith Butler: Undoing Gender. Eric Anderson’s Inclusive Masculinity is not far away.

Why? The subject is cross-disciplinary. What is called capitalism in one book may be called masculinity in another.




Piketty, David 2014: Capital in the Twenty-First Century.  The Belknap Press of Harvard University Press, Cambridge Massachusetts

Wilkinson, Richard; Pickett, Kate 2010: The spirit level. Why greater equality makes societies stronger. Bloomsbury Press, New York


Oct 18
Kjønnslikestilling og FNs bærekraftsmål


En internasjonal undersøkelse (IPSOS) tyder på at kjønnslikestilling er det minst kjente området blant 16 omåder i forhold til FNs bærekraftsmål, selv om det er presentert ganske høyt på listen, som mål nr 5.

“A new Ipsos survey finds that at a global level, three out of four adults (74%) have at least some awareness of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These goals, laid out by world leaders in 2015, were 17 benchmarks set in order to end poverty, fight inequality, and stop climate change around the world. This survey asked more than 19,000 adults from 28 countries about their awareness and opinions of 16 of the 17 SDGs”

«Ingen sult» var det mest kjente av FNs bærekraftsmål, 85 prosent, fulgt av «rent vann», 84 prosent, og «ren energi» med 83 prosent. Etter en rekke med nokså håndfaste mål der raten for kjenskap varierer fra 85 til 79 prosent, kom de to sosiale målene om redusert sosial ulikhet, som en egen pulje lenger bak. Dvs «redusert ulikhet» 76 prosent, og «kjønnslikestilling» 74 prosent.




Oct 15
Beautify Junkyards

Hippie music – not quite dead?

Checking out Beautify Junkyards: The invisible world of Beautify Junkyards. Ghost box records.

This is a Portuguese band, recorded in Lisbon. I came across it, searching  for good new music, listened to it on Tidal, and then decided to buy the LP. Very glad I did.

First thing – the title “hippie music” is partly wrong. “Mystic music” is maybe a better word. This is a new kind of music, whatever its roots.

Yet it does have a lot of hippie and 1960s youth movement references. The music style is much like the band The United States of America, on their first album, the song  Love letter for a dead Che. Che Guevara, that is. Women voices lamenting.

The band cites the poet William Butler Keats, much in the hippie fashion, if there is a “dim kingdom” beyond the ills of this earth, why not grab for it.. “There is more love there, than upon the earth”.

Someone named “major Tom” has been brought in, to produce this, and it has been done in intricate and engaging ways. Often, I feel, the music is best when it gets down to its Portuguese or even Brazilian roots, or moves in that direction. That’s when things really start to swing.

All in all a very good LP, recommended.


Oct 01
Gentle Giant revisited

You might think a group named “Gentle Giant” was about masculinity. Maybe it was. But this group was mainly about “weird”, as in “far out”, beyond any of the confines of their context, the music scene in the UK around 1970. Where, suddenly, everyone and his son in law were competing, how to be “progressive”. How to push “prog” music along.

Gentle Giant were masters of this art. Pushing prog rock beyond the borders of convention, acceptance and imagination of the day, with very experimental albums – resulting in a “niche” limited following. Later, their merits have been rediscovered.

Now, excerpts of their first three albums have been re-mixed and reissued by Steven Wilson (Three piece suite). I bought this double LP. Cover reproduced below.

I have compared the original albums to the Wilson remix. I like the originals better, on most accounts. There, the production goes further into the “weird” territorry, along with the music. The ambience, especially, is more striking. But this is probably not so much due to Wilson, rather it is due to the state of the tapes he worked with. The tape recordings on my original LPs sound more fresh, with more treble energy. I bet that the tapes that Wilson worked with – after years of storage – were somewhat reduced in the high treble. This is what happens to tapes over time.

I find plusses and minuses across the line. If I want Gentle Giant to sound “modern and normal”, not so hard to accept, I turn on the Wilson mix. If I want them in all their weirdness, disregarding some glaring and badly composed production, I go back to the originals. If I had to choose one, the originals win out. But it is nice to have both.


Sep 29
Is gender equality a benefit for men?

Washington Post cites my research here:


Sep 18
Feminist pioneers in music: Grace Slick

A feminist pioneer belts it out:

Grace Slick: Manhole (1974)

Front side of the cover of my original LP (on Grunt label)

Grace Slick was an icon of the youth revolution in the late 1960s.

Was she only a pretty face? No.

If you want a direct ‘time window’ into the end of the hippie era, recorded in 1974, try this LP.

A very under-appreciated album.

Cover back side

“On Manhole, the music is wonderfully dense, macabre, exhilarating, and totally out there. This is a great portion of music from the lead singer of one of America’s great music groups. ” Joe Viglione, Allmusic cf https://www.allmusic.com/album/manhole-mw0000015080

When I listen now, 2019, I still think – like I did when first hearing the album in the 1970s – that Slick often leans too far towards “power” singing, becoming insistent, belting or shouting out her message. When she moderates her voice, things go better.

And yes, now as before, I think the arrangements and melodies sometimes become pompous.

Even so, this is a great album.

The feminist and progressive message is clear. For example, Slick is not singing about some up-above lover, willing to let his charms, like other female artists of the day, including Joni Mitchell (“the big man arrives”..). There is more fire-power here. She sings with the men she loves, instead. Remarkably, her duets with Paul Kantner are among the best material – and the Kantner songs are among the best on the LP.

Manhole has been under-appreciated and downgraded for too long. Even in a recent review, the tendency remains (see e g http://www.thevinyldistrict.com/storefront/2015/07/graded-on-a-curve-grace-slick-manhole/). The reviewer says that when she innovates, it is “obscure”. When she doesn’t, it is stale. Damned if you do; damned if you don’t.

I think she ran circles around most other female singers of her day – they often sound stale and meek, compared to this. Do I like the sound of her singing? I am mixed. Sometimes no. It is too much. Too masculine, even. But is it new? Yes. Is it assertive? Yes. Does it carry a message? Yes. Does it spell artistic freedom? Yes.

Women of the revolution: Janis Joplin and Grace Slick at Woodstock 1969

Manhole needs to be understood in context. It was made at the end of the Jefferson Airplane period, before the band changed into the more commercial and less progressive Jefferson Starship, in the mid-70ies.

Jon Viglione at All music guide describes it fairly well:

Manhole was the last of the experimental Jefferson Airplane, and Grace Slick’s first official solo album. While Bark and Long John Silver, the final stages of the original Airplane, displayed the excessive psychedelic nature of the musicians within the confines of their group format, Blows Against the Empire, Sunfighter, and Baron Von Tollbooth and the Chrome Nun allowed for total artistic expression. Manhole concluded this phase with 1974’s other release, the Jefferson Starship’s Dragonfly.”

Bark and Long John Silver were rather unsuccessful attempts of the Airplane – after a string of successful innovative albums in the late 60ies, including After bathing at Baxter’s, Crown of creation, and Volunteers. The band realized this, and attempted new formats and groupings from the members of the band – like the spin-off Hot Tuna. The main “reformulation” of the band emerged in the string of LPs mentioned by Viglione – Blows against the empire, Sunfighter, and Baron von Toolboth.

Manhole pushed the concept a little further, until it collapsed. Quite symbolic.

Sometimes, when Grace sings on this album, I am reminded of Tom Jones or other singers when they – to my ears – are overdoing it. Sometimes I can understand why All music guide, despite applause from Viglione, gave it  just three out of five stars. Other times, it works really well. Everyone – the guys in the band – are doing their thing. Grace just inserts her voice above them, steering them towards joy and artistic freedom.

The guys are not just the local pub band. David Crosby joins in the best singing on the album. Paul Kantner continues his explorations as lead voice on some of the songs, and contributes on the rest. Jack Casady plays some beautiful bass. Barbata is good on drums, as are many of the other players. When not drowned out by the voice.

All music guide fails to appreciate the string of albums ending with Manhole. It gives Sunfighter just three out of five stars, and Baron... just two. This is ridiculous. These are classic albums, despite their faults. Four to five stars.

Despite its faults, Manhole is a special album, a time window, a testament, and a future teller – today also.

Along the way, Kantner had led the show, now Slick led it.

English is not my native language, so maybe my use of “belt” or “belting” is not the correct term. I don’t want to undermine Grace Slick’s greatness as a singer. Turns out, it does not. On the contrary, learning how to belt, distinct from how to yell, may still make a rock star out of you. Belting, as a form of shouty singing, seems to go back to way back when, in human communication. With belting, you claim a territorry, sound-wise – this is more than the warning shouting or yelling of a tribe, and more than soft singing for the close group – in my interpretation. Compared to opera or classical singing, rock singers use belt voice as part of the repertoire. Growling and grunting can be seen as offshoots.

Variation is the key to Grace Slick as a singer, not just the belting part. The intensity of her voice, whatever the volume or singing style, is fabulously shown  in the solo voice recording of White Rabbit – now available on the web:

Grace Slick’s Vocals On ‘White Rabbit’ Are Going Viral And They Will Give You Goosebumps

She did not have a “style” (which was a point, at the time) – this singing is just extremely forceful, climbing slowly towards belting,  based on the melody and lyrics.

But arguably, the way she uses her voice is even more masterful on Manhole. “Look up! The roof is gone”, she sings. The old oppression is gone. There are new potentials, new possibilities.



Jul 10
Wigwam: Being – en gang til

Det finske bandet Wigwam spilte inn Being i 1973. Det er vel omtrent så prog man kan komme, i nordisk prog i 1965-75-perioden. Being går tre ganger rundt det meste, både musikalsk og innholdsmessig. Er det vellykket? Tja, delvis, men det tar litt tid, litt lytting, før resepten «setter seg». Er det prog? Avgjort ja.

Noen kommentarer på nett: «Being” was WIGWAM’s 5th album and represents one of the most profound and highly dramatized concept albums mixing religious and political themes in a very strange little album.” Ja, very strange indeed, iallfall om man ikke forstår hva Wigwam prøver å uttrykke. «It’s my understanding that the album caused a bit of tension in the band, with some members having a problem with the extremely politicised lyrics. It’s not the words that irritate me, though, than the delivery.”

Flere kommentarer her:  http://www.progarchives.com/album.asp?id=3435

Noen misliker vokalen – «particularly the vocals by Jukka Gustavson. ‘Being’ leaves me cold due to the unemotional content.” Men er det ufølsomt? Jeg vil heller si, en original og så å si «sosiologisk» vokal. Akkurat som sosiologien i barnets hode, på forsiden. En type Brecht fremmedgjøring, nesten, i måten vokalen er dubbet på, den stiger og synker atonalt. Like det eller ikke – det er originalt. Tilmed for Wigwam, som senere gikk tilbake til en mer glatt stil, med Jim Pembroke som vokalist.

En førstepress Wigwam Being LP fra Love Records koster nå ca 150 euro, eller mer, på Discogs, i Near Mint utgave. Re-utgaven jeg har, fra Svart Records, koster 70-80 euro. Man kan få en god del ut av Wigwam ved å kjøpe Rumours on the rebound, en dobbel samle-LP, som kan fås til 20-30 euro.  Selv om det ikke er samme sak. Being, særlig, er verd et eget kjøp.

Kommentarer på Amazon: «Perhaps the most musically dark, complex and harmonically dense album Wigwam ever made(1973). As impressively challenging to the ear as any of the more serious works of Frank Zappa, Mahavishnu Orchestra or PFM, Yes, Gentle Giant etc. Not for the faint hearted.»

«Imagine a rock-pop group that has members that also like Soft Machine, Zappa and a bit of blues mixed with sophisticated jazz. Add some nice vocal harmonies, some a la Stevie Wonder(!), and weird lyrics (which are sang in a choppy kind-a-way!) and you’ve got a pretty original sound. I recommend you get “Fairy Port'” first. But then come to this which is great also!”

Choppy – ja, kanskje, men særlig, atonale toner.

Tekstene er kritiske – progge – og ikke vanskelig å forstå, iallfall ikke i en nordisk kontekst.  Finland levde tett innpå Sovjet, i den kalde krigen. Frykten var stor for atomkrig – jfr Wigwam’s Nuclear nightclub LP, litt senere enn Being. Og The dark album.

Omslaget, bildet i barnets hode, er laget omtrent som en karikatur fra tidlig moderne tid – øvrigheten på toppen, vanlige folk i midten, og avvikere nederst. Figurene på toppen er de viktigste figurene i sangene, blant annet kommunisten, presten og småborgeren.  Kapitalisten holder et skilt med «US get into Vietnam Chile etc».

Under alle disse øvrighetspersonene ser vi en kø av «vanlige folk» som bærer byrdene under det hele.  Nederst ser vi to figurer under et skilt «Subcultural bayarea», en mager mann og en fyllik. Køen av vanlige folk går mot en samling bygninger i bakgrunnen, på høyre side, med røyk fra skorsteiner, med et lysende reklameskilt «Pariah». Det minner litt om Auschwitz. Røyken blander seg med grenene fra kunnskapens tre, der akademikeren sitter og er bundet på den ene foten.

Dette er et av de heftigste politisk prog-omslagene som er laget.  Er det «ekstremt politisk»? Nei, men det er fokusert på politikk. På toppen sitter en mann med skjegg og supermanndrakt med en P på trøya, og rød kappe. – Omslaget ble laget av Jukka Gustavson, (directions) og Jorma Auersalo (art work).

Presten (i Gustavsons Pride of the biosphere) forteller om voldtekt under krigen:

As I cast my mind back to the first years of war, to the best times

of my entire career as a chaplain, I am still filled with deep piety,

with profound gratitude and awe at the recollection of one remarkable,

rather remarcable, recurrent course of events that came to pass

and shed its light in my workaday life in those halcyon years.


Warfare is rough play, as we all know, and in the manly and mera-

less martial turmoil surely all of us, even the merest Negro, the

lowliest Japanese or Jew, are equals in the sight of the same

Gawd; indeed, I wish to emphasize this!-


Well, as I was saying, it is with intense emotion and profound

humility that I recall those months of May, days when the

first ripe cherries would be fresh off the bough; sitting; there

in the dull humdrum of the Officers’ Mess we would naturally

be pleasantly diverted by questions such as- would we like some cherries!


However, it became virtually a point of tradition, yes,, hearing

that innocent query rather more lusciously worded: a couple

of “Gerries”? How about some Gerries! At this, and blushing

almost openly, the officers would proceed to rape the waitresses

in full view and afterwards shoot them on the spot.


And so, as the afflicted blood of these possessed women crimsoned

the drab floor out our mess, my turn would come to step forth

and perform my own assignment in this Extraordinary, this quite

extraordinary, colorful drama! – Those fallen souls laid to

their last rest before the scorching pains of flaming hellfire,

we would fold our hands upon the familiar words of my esteemed

colleague – words that so frequently during my career have

intrigued me and brought me succor – inscrutable are the ways

of the Lord..and how can we mortals be expected to mind and

master every turn, a-men.

Det er ikke presten som snakker her. Det er en politisk karikatur av presten, akkurat som på omslaget. Figuren blir beskrevet omtrent som den gale generalen i Dr. Strangelove. Det samme gjelder kommunisten, som er avbildet på omslaget mens han skjærer almuen ned med en sigd. Kommunisten er også en parodi, eller Brechtiansk fremstilt, fremmedgjørende. Tatt ennå litt lenger ut, a la Zappa. De som blir “offended” av dette har ikke skjønt hva det handler om – eller, låta treffer litt for godt, en innertier.

InspiRed Machine, by Jukka Gustavson

Working men in all countries let us unite

in vengeance for the time has come to

annihilate the bourgeoisie and suck the

rest up now is the time when Commu-

nism will rule the world and red shall be

the one color suffered to wave let us

take up arms let us join forces com-

rades let us march let us conquer for

behind us comrades you have the most

powerful and advanced nation in the

world also the world’s most modern

least checked weapons and the Red

Army comrades towards peace and hap-

piness on Earth towards the most

ethical and natural state and system

in the world, comrades!!!

Det er bare i starten, i beskrivelsen av proletaren, første sang på plata, at ikke parodien ligger nær ved. Her er det også enkle linjer, men det er ikke en karikatur.

Proletarian, by Jukka Gustavson

Worn through by now, all spent..my pain

property, trickery; Political treasury, politics,

lush lies

Bitterness, repeating myself, impotence;

and the pink backs, suction-directed..us being breathed

into stupor; sucking

Scabbing. Scrathing..I’m punished –

The Mob ever drunker; comrades,

there always

And the leaders, the bosses, responsibility flags, salaries soar –

graftsmanship grows, competence decays

Altså – vanlige folk sliter. Vanlige folk får byrdene, av kranglingen mellom de store. Systemet utbytter vanlige folk. De rike skor seg. Proletaren prøver å advare, men mobben er fordrukken som alltid.  Spillet blir hovedsaken. Kompetansen går tapt.

Hodet på omslaget er del av et barn, et foster – med mange muligheter, andre verdener, tegnet inn på baksiden. Selv om forholdene er nokså dystre i hodet, er det mange kroppslige og sanselige muligheter.  Her er baksiden.


Her er helheten – omslaget brettet ut:

Selv om mye er dystert på Being, er musikken lys, delvis håpefull, ikke mørk. Det er fortsatt et glimt av hippielogikk, kjærlighet kan endre verden. Det følsomme barnet.

Min kritikk er ikke at skiva er dårlig, men heller at den er litt for hektisk, over-flink, til tider, og prøver litt for mye på en gang. Men vel, dermed ble den også en klassiker.

Jun 28
Harriet Holter on gender differentiation and gender stratification

It looks a bit sad, maybe – the cover on Harriet Holter’s doctoral thesis, published by the University press (Universitetsforlaget), Oslo, 1970. The cover was made by me and Iben Hjort. No brains involved. Empty at the top.

What did Harriet Holter actually say, regarding gender differentiation and stratification? Her text was a world first – or a very early candidate, to distinguish more clearly between these dimensions. Here are some excerpts.

‘The concept of sex differentiation is in the present work often distinguished from sex stratification, that is, from the ordering of the two genders in terms of power and social prestige.’ p 18.

‘In the language of exchange theory, the net results of the differentiation accorded each partner must be great enough to keep motivating the exchange.’ 21

Some stratification counters differentiation:

‘Gender stratification [means] that men, in general, have more power and higher prestige than women. In what sense is this a reasonable postulate? Everyone is classified by many criteria in addition to sex. Sex is only one of several attributes that affect a person’s total prestige. It is assumed, then, that men tend to be evaluated more highly (..) when all other status criteria are similar for the two.’ p 44.

‘A functional explanation of the common rank order between men and women would have to postulate that women’s tasks, that is, to give birth to children and take care of them and rear them, is less necessary for society. (..) This position seems untenable. Gender differentiation, not gender stratification, may promote basic societal requisites like protection of the young and securing a close contact between infants and nourishing mothers. (..) Once men and women are differentiated with respect to responsibilities for infants, the two sexes differ in their opportunities for securing wealth and power.’ p 45

‘Women’s ties to their infants create immobility that is incompatible with many kinds of instrumental activities. (..) Instrumental activities are valued more highly than expressive ones especially in modern society.’ p 46

‘Expressive tasks devalued since they are less easily evaluated, dont give control over large resources (like some instrumental tasks).’ p 47. ‘Unlike expressive roles, instrumental ones require the delay of gratification, which helps in the control of resources’ 47

‘The more differentiated in the traditional manner are the tasks of men and women, the more likely it is that the stratification is marked. (..) [Yet] Certain forces act counter to these processes’. 47-48

‘The complementary natures of sex roles … is also a basis for the development of female forms of power as well as male ones.’ 49
‘The main hypothesis [in research] about improvements in the exchange positions of women follows from their increased occupational participation.’ 50 ‘Women do not have to use sexual favours as goods-in-exchange, a fact that enables them to enjoy sexuality as a pleasure in itself. And it might be added, women’s freedom with respect to choice of marital partner is increased.’ p 50.

Harriet Holter compared sex and race as examples of ‘ascriptive differentiation. Due to the conventions at her time, she here uses the term differentiation, rather than stratification, and states  (p 51), that “One characteristic of sex differentiation, and partly of race differentiation (..) has been the change in the definitions of criteria from legal rules to informal norms. Such a shift seems to have taken place in all societies that have experienced prosperity in recent times.” She concludes that “sex differentiation, like other functional differentiations, entails a rank ordering of the positions of men and women.” (p 53).

In chapter two, on sex differentiating norms, she defines “sex roles or gender roles” (p 54) more precisely  – this is “stable, patterned and sanction-carrying expectations about a person’s behaviour”, “the sum of norms directed towards a person occupying a certain position.”

Later, she discusses why gender is not class – a different type of ranking mechnanism, p 225. She notes that women are sometimes more conservative than men, ‘more in favour of ascriptive principles than men’ 230. ‘Sex differentiation may support class stratification by reducing tensions produced by the stratification’ 231.

Here we are into the heart of the matter. Renewed and increased class stratification may be eased by going back to a more traditional gender role system.