What are two comparisons between the role of women during the Paleolithic Age and in Mesopotamia?

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Perhaps the easiest comparison to be made between women in the Paleolithic and Mesopotamian eras is that they were both responsible for the vast majority of child-raising. This is due to the work distribution of the sexes. In the Paleolithic era, men were primarily focused on hunting large game, including...

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Perhaps the easiest comparison to be made between women in the Paleolithic and Mesopotamian eras is that they were both responsible for the vast majority of child-raising. This is due to the work distribution of the sexes. In the Paleolithic era, men were primarily focused on hunting large game, including giant woolly mammoths, which could provide enough food for their tribe for weeks or even months. In the ancient Mesopotamia era, men were primarily farmers and would work year-round in the fields due the fact that there was always a growing season. Women would be held primarily responsible for raising children until they were old enough to help with hunting and gathering (in the Paleolithic) and farm chores (in Mesopotamia).

Another comparison that can be made is about the role of women as religious authorities. While we know very little about religion in prehistory, archaeologists have discovered many statues of women, most notably the Venus of Willendorf, that suggest a religious icon or token, most likely prayed to for healthy childbirth. This has led to much speculation about the role of women as leaders of prehistorical religion. Likewise, women in Mesopotamian society could become priestesses, responsible for communicating with the gods and delivering their messages to the masses; these women (and the male priests) were nearly as powerful as Mesopotamian kings themselves.

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Men and women in the Paleolithic era were nomadic hunters and gatherers. Since they had to follow their food source, the women gathered berries and plants while the men were out hunting. Women were also responsible for caring for the children. Since there was no code of law or government in the Paleolithic era, the only sense of social organization was that groups were patriarchal.

Women in ancient Mesopotamia were clearly second to their male counterparts, regardless of which layer of the social strata they were part of. Since Mesopotamia was a sedentary civilization with a legal code and a clear social hierarchy, women were well aware of their rights and privileges. Laws in the Code of Hammurabi allowed women to buy and sell property and to engage in commercial trade.

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