Lets examine the use of the word “Bitch” and explore other contexts of defining it.
One depiction of the term ‘bitch’ that I have always found curious in the media is when it is doubly used to shame the man as much as a woman. A defiant woman is referred to as a ‘bitch’ and a defiant man is often referred to as a ‘son of a bitch’ . The reason I find it interesting in this context is that it takes degrading a man’s Mother in order to bring shame to the man himself. But let me confess that I would teach my son to be a proud ‘son of a bitch’ because for me it is not a negative label, but rather a compliment to a woman’s ways of raising an instinctually awake and independent child. We sure need more of them in our socially controlled society.
So the word bitch typically means a ‘female dog’. In a wild-er context it would be referring to a ‘Female wolf’, because a dog is simply the domesticated version of the wolf. The dog and the wolf essentially come from the same family. Scientists have also noted that if you took a domesticated dog out into the wild for a couple of years, it would soon regain its wild, wolf like qualities.
According to Clarissa Pinkola Estes, The author of the book, “Women who run with the wolves”- Healthy wolves and healthy women have the same characteristics: Keen sensing, playful spirit, and a heightened capacity for devotion. She also goes on to liken the qualities of a healthy woman to that of a wolf. She states, “A healthy woman is much like a wolf: robust, chockfull, strong life force, life giving, territorially aware, inventive, loyal, roving.”
These are all qualities that Wolves teach their young when they are born as part of their training in the wild. One of my dear friends once found a sign that said ‘beware of the dog’ while we were hiking in Hawaii, but he brilliantly rearranged the letters to say ‘b free o dogma’ . I found this really insightful because it was pretty much the wolf’s creed for me – be free of dogma, be free of control, stay wild, stay free.
And because of this I can see why defiance would be shamed by this label. Because free and wild women who are uncontrollable by society, raise defiant children who can think for their own, assert their right to freedom/autonomy and are difficult to control. This isn’t the best case scenario given the state of our society, that would rather the people continuously give up their will and have in many ways allowed themselves to be oppressed. Be it in jobs they hate, relationships that are right for others and not themselves, or the addictive nature of our consumer industry.
I also find it interesting the encouragement of women to be always nice, to submit to the will of others and after they have passed on from their parents, set to submit to the will of their partners. The word ‘Bitch” has always been used to discourage a woman who was opinionated, could hold her own in conversation and acted upon her instincts. Personally… I embrace it because I know that one of the greatest fears of our society, is that of an instinctively driven- wild woman.
Because we will teach our children to be free, autonomous & defiant to the control trip of society. However unfortunately,
“Wildlife and the wild woman are both endangered species” – Clarissa Pinkola Estes.
When was the last context you heard the term ‘bitch’ used ?