The Role And Status Of Women In Viking Age

1839 words - 7 pages

Scandinavian R5BThe role and status of women in Viking AgeWith the general growth of feminist work in many academic fields, it is hardly surprising that the research on the role and status of women in Viking age has attracted considerable attention in recent years. There is a substantial amount of research on this and the expanding corpus of research addresses itself to all of the major dimensions of Viking women's lives. While some research has focused on evidence from literature, such as sagas, other work has sought to use evidence from archaeology, such as burials. This source difference results in a broad range of differing interpretation regarding the status and position of women in Viking Age.Much of the earlier interpretation of women's status and position in Viking Age emphasizes knowledge gained from diverse texts including sagas of the Icelanders, skaldic poetry, romances, legal texts, and historical documents. The Icelandic sagas portray a number of independent-minded females. Many of us have interpreted this to show that Viking women were independent and fully equal to men. But if we read deeply the lines, it is clearly that the real situation differed. The marriage fate of two sisters in Honsa-thoris Saga indicates that marriage was most often a business transaction, including detailed consideration of wealth and property, between father and suitor, and women had no say in who they marry, as well as their authority in a marriage (Jochens 1995). This literary example also reports that even if a girl was told about the engagement, there was nothing she can do to cancel it (Jochens 1995). Viking women seem to have very limited freedom of choice.By studying the laws of early Iceland, scholars argue that Viking Age women did not enjoy the same legal status as men. "A mother takes one-third of killing compensation after her legitimate children, sharing with the dead man's brothers born of the same father; and in the same way she takes one-third of the compensation paid on account of her daughters, sharing with their brothers born of the same father" (Dennis, Foote, and Perkins 1980, 51). This suggests that woman did not inherit as much as men. There is other evidence that women were not considered as valuable as men. Infanticide, the killing of newborns, was practiced almost exclusively on females. "The most explicit Scandinavian accounts of female infanticide, usually in the form of exposure, occur in Icelandic family sagas, most of which were composed in the thirteenth century…Thorsteinn remarks to Jófríor: 'You are soon going to have a baby. Now if you have a girl, it must be left out to die, but if it is a boy, it will be brought up.'" (Wicker 2012, 254-255). The sagas portray males as of greater value for increasing land holdings, riches, and honor, while females had to be married off and provided with dowries.Gender roles were clearly defined by the runic texts. The examination of texts on a Swedish stone...

Find Another Essay On The role and status of women in Viking Age

The Platonic and Aristotelian Views on the Role and Status of Women in Society

3397 words - 14 pages will analyze the Platonic and Aristotelian views on the role and status of women. Although Plato and Aristotle had distinct beliefs on what women could contribute to the collective well being of society, they shared similar opinions about the genuine status that women had in comparison to men. The Platonic view advanced the idea that secluding women to the home was counter-productive to the community as a whole. As such, women should be afforded

The Role of Women in Challenging the Status Quo in Shakespeare's Taming of the Shrew

1523 words - 6 pages The Role of Women in Challenging the Status Quo in Shakespeare's Taming of the Shrew The female characters of Shakespearean literature inspire much controversy over their roles. Many critics assert the female characters are depicted as unreal portrayals of passive women. Other critics argue that the roles portrayed were considered normal for the period in which they took place. During the period of the Enlightenment, many social norms

"What effect did the 1914-18 War have upon the role and status of women?"

4594 words - 18 pages fullmilitary status. The women enrolled rather than being enlistedtherefore were not to be punished by a military court but a civil one.Between 1917 and the end of the war over 55000 women had served in theWAAC. Even though they were not in combat duties they had to endureshelling attacks and bombing raids and when nine were killed thenewspapers were outraged and publicised it as another atrocious act ofthe Germans, but they were there to replace soldiers

The Norse Viking Age

4470 words - 18 pages In most cases, the Norse Viking Age is recorded to have officially began in 793 AD with the first recorded raid through to 1066 AD, ending with the Battle of Hastings. However, these dates vary upon scholars. The Battle of Hastings wasn't exactly the end of the Viking Age, because the Norse were spread out across Europe and Viking raids continued to take place in other locations. With that said, dating the conclusion of the Viking Age is

The Status of Women in New Testament and Lysistrata

517 words - 2 pages Since the beginning of time the treatment of women has improveddramatically. In the earliest of times women were mere slaves to men. Todaywomen are near equals in almost all fields. In 411 B.C., when Lysistrata waswritten, men had many stunning advantages to that of their female counterparts.Although women's rights between 30 and 100 A.D., the time of the New Testament,were still not what they are today, the treatment of women was far

Christianity in Viking Age Scandinavia.

2109 words - 8 pages would not be accurate to attribute the Christianization process to missionaries alone, they certainly played a hugely influential role. It is important to remember, furthermore, that missionary work in the Viking Age was not just done through preaching. Tatmission, to borrow the term used by Knut Schaferdiek, was also used. This method of missionary work used the destruction of pagan idols and "temples" and the open profanation of the pagan Gods

Status of Women in the Workplace

2626 words - 11 pages droves. However, in addition to simply flooding women into the workforce to account for the deficit of male workers following the War, the groundbreaking 1950s presented women as a sustainable source of labor. The greater gender diversity in the workforce would redefine the so-called entrenched gender role structure that for centuries had existed in society and, thus, the workplace. It was obvious that the nature of work was changed forever. But what

THE STATUS OF WOMEN

877 words - 4 pages lives.Changing attitudes about the roles of women and men have also affected the way people conduct their everyday lives. For example, many men now take a more active role in parenting. More husbands now join their wives in natural childbirth classes. Some men have taken parental leave from work or chosen to work part-time when they become new fathers. Thus, changes in the status of women have taken place throughout history and will continue to take place. Men and women now work side by side in many different organizations. Women have earned respect and position in the society and the trend toward greater equality of the sexes will continue.

The Status of Women in India

1308 words - 5 pages RE: The Status of Women in India, Universal v. Relative Human Rights, Sovereignty Within four years, from 2009 through 2012, India's sudden economical improvement was an interest of many countries, including the United States. Due to its seven percent annual increase in GDP the Goldman Sachs predicted India to become one of the top five global economies by 2030, each comment on the country was in regards to its new potential. That is

The Changing Roles and Status of Women

1060 words - 4 pages The Changing Roles and Status of Women In 1903 the suffragette movement was born with the formation of the Women's Social and Political Union (WPSU) by Emmeline Pankhurst and her two daughters Christabel and Sylvia. At first the newly formed suffragettes relied on spreading propaganda to gain support. However, on the 18th October 1905 they gained considerable unplanned publicity when Christabel Pankhurst and

The Changing Status of Women

1502 words - 6 pages The Changing Status of Women Women have played a huge role in society. Many people respect women for the simple fact that they bring life to every human that is put on earth and, without them, none of us would be here today. Although many people respect women, women believe that they have been treated unfairly in the past. I believe that women have been treated unfairly, but I also believe that women today have much better opportunities

Similar Essays

The Role And Status Of Women In Buddhism And Confucianism

1292 words - 5 pages The role and status of women in any religion in the word is known to be controversial. In Buddhism and Confucianism, women are seen as unequal and some of their belief promotes gender inequality. As outsiders of both main Chinese religions, we wonder how women put up with the gender inequalities. Women go through with the inequalities because they respect their faith and believe deeply in the teachings of Buddha for Buddhism, and

The Changing Role And Status Of Women In Britain

2466 words - 10 pages The Changing Role and Status of Women in Britain 1. Explain why women failed to gain the right to vote between 1900 and 1914. In the twentieth century women’s role in society was hugely different to what it is today. Women were regarded as being inferior to men and were treated as such. Although girls were given a compulsory state education 1870, few went to university and those who did were not awarded a

Greek Women: Comparing And Contrasting The Status Of Women In 5th Century B.C.E. Athens To Their Status In The Hellenistic Age (4th 1st Centuries B.C.E.)

538 words - 2 pages In Ancient Greece, there were two important periods that were most prominent. Athens during the 5th century B.C.E. was one of them and the Hellenistic period was the other. The golden period of Athens (5th century B.C.E) was one of the greatest periods of all although; it was a low point for women. The period in which Alexander, the great spread the Greek culture throughout the nation was called the Hellenistic age.During the golden age of

The Role And Status Of Women In The 1940s And 1950s

1451 words - 6 pages The Role and Status of Women in the 1940s and 1950s After the First World War women had gained a huge step towards having equality with men. In 1918 married women over the age of 30 were given the right to vote. During the war women had proved themselves as capable as men, not only as nurses near the front lines working in very dangerous positions but also back in Britain working to help the war effort in jobs that