I'm reading this book, "The Gender Knot: Unraveling Our Patriarchal Legacy," by Allan G. Johnson, and I would highly recommend it to anyone wanting to learn about the roots, mechanisms and psychology of patriarchy.
I'm only halfway through with it, and Dr. Johnson's ideas will require a great deal of thought. However, this is what I've surmised so far.
1. Patriarchy, as a system, was created by men for men.
2. At patriarchy's heart is a vicious cycle of control and fear.
3. Patriarchy oppresses women because it casts them in the role of "other,"--not male, i.e., not full human beings.
It's enlightening, but it's scary. How will we, as a society, ever get out of this trap? I have serious doubts that it will occur in my lifetime, but if so, it will be because of thinkers like this, and the books they write, leading the way.