What was the role of women in the military society that was the Aztec empire?  My text for this is Traditions and Encounters by Bentley and Ziegler.

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pohnpei397 | College Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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As your question states, the Aztec Empire (referred to as the Mexica in your text) was an empire that was based largely on military power (as well as on religion).  This meant that society was dominated by the warriors.  Since women were not warriors, their place in this society was necessarily limited.  Your text tells you that Mexica women did not have a very high place in their society.

Mexica women were not completely without status.  They were honored in some ways as long as they played their proper role in society.  However, their only real purpose in life was to bear children.  They were honored for bearing children and, if they died in childbirth, they were honored in ways similar to warriors who died in battle.

Mexica women could also have some status economically.  They were involved in things like the creation and selling of craftwork.  Some of them could also gain status by serving in temples.

However, this does not mean that Mexica women had anything like equal status to warriors.  They were not allowed to hold positions in the government.  They were officially under the control of their husbands and fathers.  They did not have the right to inherit property.

Thus, the role of women in the Aztec Empire was limited, largely because of the military nature of that empire’s society.

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