How did the role of women change as farming became more routine?

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larrygates eNotes educator| Certified Educator

With the development of agriculture and specialization, most societies moved to a patriarchal social framework. Previously, when people were basically hunters/gatherers, there was little gender distinction, as all participated, although men were primarily hunters and women gatherers. With the development of agriculture, humans became less mobile, and tended to live and work in designated areas. With this development, men became primarily responsible for farming, marketing crops, etc. and women became responsible for child rearing and chores which normally would be performed near or in the household. Men became recognized as the heads of household and had substantial authority over women and children, sometimes even the power of life and death. Some societies remained matrilineal, with lineage traced from the mother; but even these societies were strongly male oriented.