While some would argue that there is absolutely no place for the topic of "Female Supremacy," as you call it, in Gorean discourse-- I disagree.
Norman obviously wanted to explore that element of human interaction, also. Else he wouldn't have given us detailed accounts of the Silver Masks or Tharna, or illustrate the capture of males at the hands of Panther Girl bands. Which he does.
In my opinion he's trying to illustrate the difference between the dictates of fantasy versus those of reality. Granted, in a subjective Gorean laboratory of his own making. But I find the results quite informative.
The Silver Masks of Tharna ruled there because, essentially, at some point in the past, the males of that city completely bought into the concept that Free Women (whom their society already recognized as worthy of the utmost respect) should, therefore, be placed on pedestals ABOVE their men-- to rule over them.
Norman depicts the results as disastrous. Not all women are capable of doing so responsibly or ably, obviously, but the end result was worse. Because, in order to maintain their physically stronger and more combative males under control, the females resorted to a program of total subjugation.
None of the Silver Masks ran down into the sand arena to personally beat the crap out of resistant males, of course. They weren't capable of doing that. Instead, they enlisted the aid of other, cooperative males who would do that part of it for them, in exchange for money or favors.
The women of Tharna didn't conquer the men of Tharna. Those men conquered themselves. Because they mistakenly allowed their inherent cultural Gorean respect and admiration for strong and capable women to blind them to the fact that not ALL women were worthy of such respect, or were capable of serving as a just and honorable Tatrix.
It is the rarest of women who are capable of earning such respect in the eyes of their men.
The end result was misery and frustration across the board. The women of Tharna weren't particularly happy ordering their men around like a bunch of surly dogs; and there were naturally a lot of petty, nasty unqualified women who wound up in charge just because they WERE women, though in truth as individuals, they had no business being in charge of anything.
By the time the Silver Masks of Tharna are dethroned, the long-suppressed anger and frustration at the indignities endured by the Gorean males of that city is so powerful that those males assume total control over their city, and the very concept of the respected "Free Woman" is abandoned by them. Having misused the opportunity to lead and rule, the women of Tharna are stripped of that opportunity forever.
The Panther Girls are a different situation entirely. These are strong, capable women who (it is suggested) have rebelled against the all-or-nothing view of females prevalent in the Gorean cities. Either they were unfairly or inappropriately enslaved, against their own true natures-- or else they have yet to meet men powerful enough to inspire their devotion. So they did the only thing they could do under the situation-- they ran from Gorean society to someplace where Gorean society could not reach them-- to the heart of the great Northern Forests.
They are still frustrated, minus their men. They remain one-half of the human experience. In rejecting the patriarchal Gorean society and replacing it with one of their own, they must admit that their new society is an incomplete one. Men have the physical power to dominate women, one-on-one, if they choose to do so. The only way a woman can completely escape that possibility, without recourse to willing and combative males who will act in her behalf against other males, is to completely eliminate all traces of anything male from her life.
The sexual frustration grows so great that they routinely kidnap hapless males through clever woodcraft and strength of numbers, and then have sex with them against their will-- dominating them, in a revenge ritual wherein they simultaneously fulfill their deep-seated sexual needs while displaying their self-professed power over the male of the species-- through the act of rape.
In order to escape the power of men, the Panther Girls remake themselves in the image of men. In order to assume male power, they adopt male behavior in emulation of their male counterparts. In order to escape their fear of rape, they become the rapists.
But this is a situation that cannot last. Ultimately, many of the Panther Girls, when freely given the choice, are depicted rather sheepishly returning to Gorean civilization, weary of the frustration and constant effort required to remain separate from the males of their race, having learned that ultimately they aren't men, nor do they really wish to be.
Verna stays in the forest. Only Marlenus is powerful enough to make her bow, a fact to which she readily admits. He has inspired her love and proven himself worthy of her devoted service. But in the end they both know that if she is kept in captivity, even as Ubara, it will destroy who she is.
She is not a Female Supremacist. She is, rather, the freest of all the Free Women of Gor. She will not depend upon men to give her freedom-- she will be free without them.
But in order to do so-- she must exist without them.
There is no "Female Supremacy" on Gor. There are only two sexes-- two halves of the same whole, which comprise the human race. As it should be-- as it, undeniably, IS.
In the end, the only way a woman can rule upon Gor-- or anywhere-- is with the cooperation of the males in her vicinity.
If she can achieve that-- as a Free Woman, as a Tatrix, even as a female slaver-- then Gorean Philosophy suggests that there's no reason why she shouldn't. Providing it thoroughly pleases the men whom she rules.
But if she wants to REPLACE the men in her vicinity or completely escape the fact of their physical influence over her-- to rule without them-- then she had better dig a canoe and paddle a long way upriver, into the forest.
And for the record-- it's a lot harder to earn the cooperation and respect of Gorean men than that of the typically uninformed, socially-fettered male too often found in modern Western society.
It was recently said to me (regarding BDSM) that "Female Supremacy is another aspect of the lifestyle, not necessarily one's belief regarding the 'real world' and all that is in it."
In all honesty, I fail to see how a "lifestyle" can function without acknowledging and representing "the real world" and all that's in it.
Unless one approaches the "lifestyle" as something that can be turned on or off at will, like a light switch.
In which case, that's less a "lifestyle" than a temporary affectation, isn't it?
My "life style" is the manner in which I live my life. All the time. It's based on my acceptance and adherence to Gorean philosophy.
No female lifts a whip in my presence without my express permission.
That being the case-- in whose hand does the real power lie?
I wish you well,