O uso que pude observar, por parte de muitas feministas e/ou outros progressistas, do conceito de ''patriarcado'' muitas vezes me pareceu desleixado —o tipo de explicação que, por servir para explicar qualquer coisa, não explica nada, e isso por uma falta de rigor em sua definição. Pois bem, eis um trecho do artigo clássico de 1975 da antropóloga, feminista marxista (ou paramarxista) e teórica da sexualidade, Gayle Rubin, chamado ''The traffic in women: notes on the 'political economy' of sex''  exatamente sobre isso:
The term patriarchy was introduced to distinguish the forces maintaining sexism from other social forces, such as capitalism. But the use of patriarchy obscures other distinctions. Its use is analogous to using capitalism to refer to all modes of production, whereas the usefulness of the term capitalism lies precisely in that it distinguishes between the different systems by which societies are provisioned and organized. Any society will have some system of "political economy." Such a system may be egalitarian or socialist. It may be class stratified, in which case the oppressed class may consist of serfs, peasants, or slaves. The oppressed class may consist of wage laborers, in which case the system is properly labeled "capitalist." The power of the term lies in its implication that, in fact, there are alternatives to capitalism.
Similarly, any society will have some systematic ways to deal with sex, gender, and babies. Such a system may be sexually egalitarian, at least in theory, or it may be "gender stratified," as seems to be the case for most or all of the known examples. But it is important—even in the face of a depressing history—to maintain a distinction between the human capacity and necessity to create a sexual world, and the empirically oppressive ways in which sexual worlds have been organized. Patriarchy subsumes both meanings into the same term. Sex/gender system, on the other hand, is a neutral term that refers to the domain and indicates that oppression is not inevitable in that domain, but is the product of the specific social relations which organize it.
Uma outra obra da autora que achei bastante interessante foi o artigo de 1984 intitulado ''Thinking sex: notes for a radical theory of the politics of sexuality''.
 Outra opção de leitura está disponível aqui.