The Role of Women in Indian Life

The Role of Women in Indian Life

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Women were important in Indian Life, because they kept the group going, they kept them in food, not by hunting, but when the men come back they prepare the meat, and make it edible and preserve it for weeks to come. Whether the band will starve or not is down to the women. If the tribe needs to pack up and leave, it’s down to the women to do it quick and efficiently, and it’s up to them to carry it.
When the men are out hunting the women have to collect sticks to hang the skins off it, so it can dry out to be used for tipis, for coats and saddles. The women in the tribe were sorted in to groups on what their talents were for example artistic; this group would paint tipis and make clothing. They would have a special ceremony for when a girl was able to have children. As children were very important as they were taught by their mothers and fathers to hunt or if they were girls they were taught to do the job their mothers did when they were unable to. The wisdom was past down through the generations, and the tribe depended on it.
Although farming wasn’t that big it was also the women’s job to tend to the fields, men often feared the women because of the amount of power they had in the group, because the property, housing, land, and tools, belonged to them. Because property usually passed from mother to daughter, and the husband joined his wife's family, he was more of a stranger. As a result, the husband was unlikely to become an authoritative, domineering figure; a woman could ‘divorce’ her husband at any time by just throwing his stuff out of tipi.
Women had respect and independence in the tribes because they would sort everything out to move onto the next place on the Plains. It would be their job to take down the tipis and all their possessions, even if the women had to carry babies and children on their horses. They were very independent and did lots for the tribe. Which is surprising considering that in most cultures where they were only used to recreate and then to look after them.

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