Posted by Pamela on November 20, 2006
In Reply to: Re: Behind every succesful man there is a woman posted by RRC on November 19, 2006
: : : : : Behind every succesful man there is a woman-Who did coin this statement and why? Secondly consider the folowing:-In front of every successful man there is a woman (consider mother),or behind a successful man there is a sucessful woman-Which one of hese are true?
: : : : This is all I have on the above:
: : : : BEHIND EVERY GREAT MAN THERE IS A GREAT WOMAN - "Men often owe their success to women. It's women that make them tick. The word 'great' may be replaced by 'good,' 'successful,' etc. The proverb is listed in the 1992 'Dictionary of American Proverbs' by Wolfgang Mieder et al." From "Random House Dictionary of Popular Proverbs and Sayings" by Gregory Y. Titelman (Random House, New York, 1996). The reference cited says that the "recorded distribution" is Mississippi. Meaning the "oral source" or sources for the proverb is from that state. "Dictionary of American Proverbs" edited by Wolfgang Mieder & Others (Oxford University Press, Oxford and New York, 1992).
: : : The way I heard it was, "Behind every great man there's a woman telling him he's wrong."
: : : SS
: : In addition to "in back of", one of the meanings of behind is "supporting"/"in support of" which is partly what makes it such a clever saying. Using "in front of" would loose this extra ambiguity.
: Oops, I meant lose not loose. (^_^)
The saying is not liked by feminists (if I dare make such a generalisation). It was made popular in my neck of the woods by the cringe-worthy 1985 Lennox/Franklin song "Sisters are doing it for themselves."
Now there was a time when we used to say
That behind every great man
There had to be a great woman
Oh, in these times of change
You know that it's no longer true
So we're coming out of the kitchen
'cause there's something we forgot to say to you
It's that sisters are doin' it for themselves
Standing on their own two feet, and ringing on their own bells
We said sisters are doing it for themselves
So, it seems to have been considered an old fashioned concept even way back then. As for the question about behind of or in front of, both seem to belong to an earlier time. Now off my soapbox. Pamela