Taking Dominion by Doing Laundry

Vision Forum talks a lot about things like multigenerational faithfulness (i.e., your kids should be clones of you) and the importance of taking dominion (i.e., take over the country and institute Biblical law complete with stoning). Naturally, then, they put out resources on topics like “Training Dominion-Oriented Daughters.”

It appears from the cover of this DVD that daughters take dominion by doing laundry. Nice. I mean seriously, thought goes into cover images like these (we hope), and someone really truly honestly decided that the best image to represent dominion-oriented daughters is a little girl doing laundry. Because, you know, that’s how women take dominion. By doing laundry. Interesting.


This made me wonder. What pictures do they put on DVDs on raising sons? So I went to the Vision Forum website, typed in “sons,” and limited my search to DVDs. Here is what I found:




No laundry going on here. Instead, it looks rather like Isaac passing his blessing on to Jacob through the laying on of hands. The son looks resolute, ready to conquer the world – which of course, is exactly what he is supposed to do.



Here they use an old painting of a group of males fishing as an illustration of the relationship between fathers and sons. At least boys get to go fishing – or is it meant to represent working at a trade alongside your father? Either way, it’s not staying home and doing laundry.



This last one takes the cake. Nothing like throwing in a bit of militarism. Sons go out and protect the family. Sons fight for freedom. Sons are courageous. Sons are strong. Daughters…do laundry.



Or am I being unfair? Perhaps other DVDs on raising daughters have more inspiring images than doing laundry? With this question in mind, I went typed in “daughters” and limited the search to DVDs. The first hit was the one shown above, but there were several others. Let me show you what I found:



Ah, I see. Biblical femininity. Daughters aren’t supposed to be strong or brave…they’re supposed to be pretty. And passive. And non-threatening. And sweet.

Oh now I get it! Boys are supposed to go out and fight for their country and support their families, but if girls go out and do any of those things, like the woman in this image, they’re wicked, rebellious, man-hating feminists (note the briefcase). Fortunately, they can be redeemed – if they return home. And do laundry.


But isn’t this the beauty of Vision Forum’s system – to convince girls that staying home and doing laundry is somehow just as noble and grandiose as their brothers going out and conquering the world in the public sphere of work, military, and politics? Vision Forum tells girls that they can be great – if they stay in the home. It tells ten-year-olds that they can do their part in taking dominion by doing the laundry even as their brothers are trained in far, far different pursuits. And like the little girl in the image, many girls who are raised on Vision Forum material can’t see well enough above the pile of laundry to realize that there’s anything else out there for them.  

I would say that I don’t think Vision Forum has any idea of the messages it sends to young girls with images like this, except I that think it does. And revels in it. I was one of those girls, and I received the messages loud and clear. My worth was defined by how much housework I did and how well I could take care of babies.

And with that, back to the laundry room – I need to take dominion!


Note: after what Vision Forum did to this image, I really want to see the original of the fishing painting just to make sure one of those younger boys wasn’t, you know, originally female or something.

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About Libby Anne

Libby Anne grew up in a large evangelical homeschool family highly involved in the Christian Right. College turned her world upside down, and she is today an atheist, a feminist, and a progressive. She blogs about leaving religion, her experience with the Christian Patriarchy and Quiverfull movements, the detrimental effects of the "purity culture," the contradictions of conservative politics, and the importance of feminism.


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