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Women In The Society Essay, Research Paper

Composition and rethorics II

Theme: In the CASEBOOK on Ralph Ellison?s ? battle royal ?, racial issues are addressed both by the author and other influential contributors. What insights do such works offer about Black identity in America.

Civilisation II

Mr Rutherford.

Introduction:

The Middle-Ages are a very intresting age that we study in history classes, I recall learning about kings, statesman, people who wielded power…etc…

But usually it left me with an impression that women did not contribute much of significance to our civilization other than caretakers of their families. Althought women contributed to our culture in many diffrent ways, in fact women accomplished far more than we officially give them credit for. Even today, women?s contributions are acknowledged less readily than men?s by history book writers.

That?s why the purpose of this study is to show how women had a major place during this era, and that those women did not only stay home they also ruled lands, owned businesses and wrote literature. With this aim in view this paper will describe first of all the status of medieval women and what was their position before turning to the second part, here we will hope to examine and describe some influent feminin figures of the Middle-Ages. Finally, we shall examine and explain the influence of those women on our modern society.

I.THE STATUS OF WOMEN.

1- Women?s Positions:

A- In family.

a) Marriage.

In this ages girls were brought up to expect to be married, and the age of consent was seven! Althought the marriage is an institution which requires trust, love and devotion in the middle ages the choice of a husband was made by the parents ?Marriage was by arrangement; no sensible family would allow he possession of valuable lands and property to be jeopardized by casual alliances? ( Chamberlain 57).The dowry was a sort of marriage transaction, it might consist of a little land, or of money or livestock. Once the couple married the role of the wife was very important, while her husband went away on trips she was in charge of the household.

When he needed the husband was allowed to beat his wife, it was legal to inflict to her injuries and moreover the woman was not allowed to make the decision of divorce.?Laws continued to allow husbands to divorce their wives, but not wives their husbands? ( Herlirlihy 51).

b) Birth and Childhood.

Births in general took place at home with the help of a midwife. Babies were baptized at the church when they did not die because the childhood at this time was very risky, a baby could die from many illness and accidents.

The little girl had to help her mother in the ?indoors? tasks around the age of eight but it depended of her social-class, of course.

c) Death.

A widow automatically received an inheritance from his late husband?s property. She often could remarry someone else or keep her independence. Women?s life expectancy was twenty-four and we also know that a medieval woman at thirty might resemble a modern woman at sixty.

d) Female Heroes.

As we saw before the wife had an important role in her marriage, when the husband was absent she had to be a ?business manager? particuliarly during the crusades where it was frequent that the men never returned, that?s why many women had to administer and protect their property add to that they also had to take care of childrens. Women often were called to defend their homes or castles although we can imagine the emotinal state of those women, how the men?s absence had an important effect.

B- In Society.

a) Education.

Women?s education depended on their social status , for exemple the nuns were limited in the study of the bible thanks to that they knew how to write and read but it was not the same case for all women. Men thought that a woman should remain illetrate, this fact may contribute to our belief that medieval women were uneducated. But little by little women had access to education, of course nuns, noble women and married women were allowed to learn how to read and write.

Then people realized that women were more ?useful? when they were educated, and that they were as able as men to learn.

b) Contact with the outside world.

Women were not in contact with the outside world very frequently, they were completely controlled by men, during the chilhood from age three until twelve they had an equal freedom to boys but later they are supervised by fathers and brothers in order to preserve their chastity, there for it was forbidden for her to be engaged in a private conversation or to be in the town unescorted. This said we must take in consideration the fact that for married-women these restrictions were partially relaxed, they were allowed to participate in religious and domestic duties in the town.

c) Sports.

Women in sports during the middle ages is not a very popular topic, we also know many things about the Olimpics but women were they involved in sports? Yes ! some women of the ?western world? were athletes, they were involved in swimming, boating, and other sports.

d) Brewing.

As water was usually polluted and unhealthy brewing ale was an important activity occuped by women. ?the actual process of brewing ale was a very tedious procedure. It entailed soaking barely for several days, then drainingthe water and germinating the barely. After germination, the malt was dried and ground, hot water added, and the wort drained off to which herbs or yeast were added as a final touch.? (Hanawalt). So in order to provide their family medieval women brewed, and also sold excess to make profit.

e) Clothing.

Of course the quality and the quantity of medieval women?s clothes depended mostly on their social class. While queens wore very elaborated gowns, peasants wore ill-fitting hand-me-downs.

At this time women wore long dresses, or shift, petticoats, surcoats; their shoes were carved wooden bottoms with leather laces.

In this part our argument was essencially that women?s positions during the middle ages was considered by the social theorists primarly with the family because it was the unit of the society.

II. INFLUENT WOMEN IN MANY AREAS.

1. Arts.

There were many feminin artists during the middle-ages : in Literature, Visual Arts, Theatre, Dance, and Music. One reason why women artists were more easily forgot was that they had traditionally changed their names when married. But there is another reason, many works done by women have often been re-assigned to their male teachers under the assumption that no first-class art could have been done by a women.

One famous artist is Christine de Pisan , she was a major feminist influence in the middle-ages, she was the daughter of an Italian astloger; her father wanted her to be educated, so she learned French, Latin, arithmetic, and geometry. She used her skill as a writer and poetess to earn a living.

2. Medecine.

?Overall, the net progress of medieval medecine was rewarding, despite the lack of technology and the abundance of obstacles? (Rowling ). As the Church forbade male doctors to look at women?s bodies, women used to learn medecine and they were vital to the well-being of the population. But they were often forbidden to make a career of healing in cities.In the great medical school such as that in Salerno a student will have learned many usefull but basic informations: about hygiene, anatomy, urine analysis for the detection of disease… Tortula was at the head of a group who studied medecine in Salerno (Italy). Many of Tortula?s works were about information on some daring references and prescriptions about impotence and childbirth.

3. Politics.

In the middle-ages the major political system was feudalism and Women were not represented in the town councils so ordinary women had no voice in local politics.? Those who did involve themselves in politics were wealthy, clerical, or upper-class; and their politics were often on an international scale? ( gies and gies, city 53-4). One of the most powerful force in Church and secular politics was Eleanor of Aquitaine, queen of Louis VII of France and later queen consort of the younger Henry II of England. It is said that during the crusade Louis VII took her with him and that she led an army of ladies all dressed in armor.

4. Religion.

In the early middle-ages woman was viewed as an instrument of evil, she rose in men?s esteem in the later middle-ages due to cult of the ?Virgin Mary?. Many dedicated themselves to the church for many reasons, the most common one was that they were in security and felt protected by God. For them, the nuns, God became their lives it was a question of true piety.

Nunnery life was based on routine and regularity.

Compare to Christian women jewish had some more freedom, for exemple they were able to divorce her husband. On the contrary Moslems women had decidedly less freedom and often still do, medieval moslem documents were there for only addressed to men, instructing them how to traet their wives; and polygamy was also permitted.One of the middle-ages? most important contributors was Hildegarde of Bingen, she entered a couvent at an early age, and she experienced many visions which were supported by the Pope Eugenius who encouraged her to keep writing. Her writing and poetry and music have survived making her one of the true medieval feminists.

5. Trade.

?Women were successful in a number of diverse professions, professions which relied not only on mere donkey work but also on skill and intelligece?( Uitz 24).In fact as women had many free time they made profit of this time in ?trading?!

As boys, girls were allowed to work until the age of foureteen… Women practiced many trades : in cottage industry, small businesses and big businesses, for the last one it was more difficult for women because these were people engaged in long-distance trade; and women faced abduction, murder, and rape from vagabonds. Rose of burford was an english trader who proved like the other women traders that women as men could be effective and profitable traders. Rose became more active in trades at the death of her husband who loaned money to King Edouard II, and Edouard had not paid his dept so Rose managed to collect the dept from the King without

?getting her head chopped off?.

6. War.

Despite the stereotype of medieval women which persists today women did not only stay home, and the last place where people expected to find a women was in the army although it is true that the majority of soldiers were men it is also true that there were women in the army; and more over there were entire compagnies of female warriors!!! There were two ways to became a knight: by holding land under a knight?s fee, or being made a knight or inducted into an order of knighthood; for women there were exemples of both cases. Joan of Arc is probably the best known medieval warrior, may be because the injustice of her death ( she was burned, because she was found guilty of witchcraft and wearing a man?s clothes).

As a teenager, she believed hearing voices telling her to help the future Charles who sent her to raise the siege of Orleans which she did successfully.

An in depth analysis of the evidence forces us to conclued that the role of medieval women was as important as men?s, and if we did not study their history in class it is because still today we leave in a society of men conducted by men…But little by little we are going to an amelioration of this situation of inequality…

III.MEDIEVAL?S WOMEN INFLUENCE ON MODERN SOCIETY.

1. An important contribution in many areas.

As we show it in the two first parts women were also present in all kinds of businesses during the middle ages. They had many difficulties because of their limited rights in their families and in the society, but they changed the world… We cannot imagine how the works of those female artists or the fight of female warriors played a role that cannot be ignored!

When studying history we could understand how it is important to know and understand not only the past but men?s and women?s actions, social or poltical events in order to have a better understanding of our present.

2. Equality.

Modern women should be very grateful for their ancestor women, because thanks to them our life is better, for exemple today the legislation protects women from abuse. And in many other cases we can enjoy a better situation than before, as in marriages, even the concept is basically the same we are happy to be more free to decide…( of course many countries are still late…). We cannot ignore the fact that still today many efforst had to be done but the future could be just better.

Conclusion:

When starting this work i was afraid about how to find documents and informations about medieval women, but finally i discovered that there are to many things to say about those women. They were not only simple participants in the middle-ages they were also author and writer of this past…

We can easily understand now that they played a very important role and that still today behind many concepts of our modern society we can find their influence; more over they have to be in peace because today a new generation of women will continue what did they began…

Bibliography:

My work was exlusively based on web sites and notes from my civilization II :

http://www.distinguishedwomen.com/ http:/www.geocities.com/

http:/www.killeenroors.com/link/women.html/

http:/www.millersv.edu/

http://www.thinkquest.org/

http:/www.womeninworldhistory.com/

Composition and rethorics II

Theme: In the CASEBOOK on Ralph Ellison?s ? battle royal ?, racial issues are addressed both by the author and other influential contributors. What insights do such works offer about Black identity in America.

Civilisation II

Mr Rutherford.

Introduction:

The Middle-Ages are a very intresting age that we study in history classes, I recall learning about kings, statesman, people who wielded power…etc…

But usually it left me with an impression that women did not contribute much of significance to our civilization other than caretakers of their families. Althought women contributed to our culture in many diffrent ways, in fact women accomplished far more than we officially give them credit for. Even today, women?s contributions are acknowledged less readily than men?s by history book writers.

That?s why the purpose of this study is to show how women had a major place during this era, and that those women did not only stay home they also ruled lands, owned businesses and wrote literature. With this aim in view this paper will describe first of all the status of medieval women and what was their position before turning to the second part, here we will hope to examine and describe some influent feminin figures of the Middle-Ages. Finally, we shall examine and explain the influence of those women on our modern society.

I.THE STATUS OF WOMEN.

1- Women?s Positions:

A- In family.

a) Marriage.

In this ages girls were brought up to expect to be married, and the age of consent was seven! Althought the marriage is an institution which requires trust, love and devotion in the middle ages the choice of a husband was made by the parents ?Marriage was by arrangement; no sensible family would allow he possession of valuable lands and property to be jeopardized by casual alliances? ( Chamberlain 57).The dowry was a sort of marriage transaction, it might consist of a little land, or of money or livestock. Once the couple married the role of the wife was very important, while her husband went away on trips she was in charge of the household.

When he needed the husband was allowed to beat his wife, it was legal to inflict to her injuries and moreover the woman was not allowed to make the decision of divorce.?Laws continued to allow husbands to divorce their wives, but not wives their husbands? ( Herlirlihy 51).

b) Birth and Childhood.

Births in general took place at home with the help of a midwife. Babies were baptized at the church when they did not die because the childhood at this time was very risky, a baby could die from many illness and accidents.

The little girl had to help her mother in the ?indoors? tasks around the age of eight but it depended of her social-class, of course.

c) Death.

A widow automatically received an inheritance from his late husband?s property. She often could remarry someone else or keep her independence. Women?s life expectancy was twenty-four and we also know that a medieval woman at thirty might resemble a modern woman at sixty.

d) Female Heroes.

As we saw before the wife had an important role in her marriage, when the husband was absent she had to be a ?business manager? particuliarly during the crusades where it was frequent that the men never returned, that?s why many women had to administer and protect their property add to that they also had to take care of childrens. Women often were called to defend their homes or castles although we can imagine the emotinal state of those women, how the men?s absence had an important effect.

B- In Society.

a) Education.

Women?s education depended on their social status , for exemple the nuns were limited in the study of the bible thanks to that they knew how to write and read but it was not the same case for all women. Men thought that a woman should remain illetrate, this fact may contribute to our belief that medieval women were uneducated. But little by little women had access to education, of course nuns, noble women and married women were allowed to learn how to read and write.

Then people realized that women were more ?useful? when they were educated, and that they were as able as men to learn.

b) Contact with the outside world.

Women were not in contact with the outside world very frequently, they were completely controlled by men, during the chilhood from age three until twelve they had an equal freedom to boys but later they are supervised by fathers and brothers in order to preserve their chastity, there for it was forbidden for her to be engaged in a private conversation or to be in the town unescorted. This said we must take in consideration the fact that for married-women these restrictions were partially relaxed, they were allowed to participate in religious and domestic duties in the town.

c) Sports.

Women in sports during the middle ages is not a very popular topic, we also know many things about the Olimpics but women were they involved in sports? Yes ! some women of the ?western world? were athletes, they were involved in swimming, boating, and other sports.

d) Brewing.

As water was usually polluted and unhealthy brewing ale was an important activity occuped by women. ?the actual process of brewing ale was a very tedious procedure. It entailed soaking barely for several days, then drainingthe water and germinating the barely. After germination, the malt was dried and ground, hot water added, and the wort drained off to which herbs or yeast were added as a final touch.? (Hanawalt). So in order to provide their family medieval women brewed, and also sold excess to make profit.

e) Clothing.

Of course the quality and the quantity of medieval women?s clothes depended mostly on their social class. While queens wore very elaborated gowns, peasants wore ill-fitting hand-me-downs.

At this time women wore long dresses, or shift, petticoats, surcoats; their shoes were carved wooden bottoms with leather laces.

In this part our argument was essencially that women?s positions during the middle ages was considered by the social theorists primarly with the family because it was the unit of the society.

II. INFLUENT WOMEN IN MANY AREAS.

1. Arts.

There were many feminin artists during the middle-ages : in Literature, Visual Arts, Theatre, Dance, and Music. One reason why women artists were more easily forgot was that they had traditionally changed their names when married. But there is another reason, many works done by women have often been re-assigned to their male teachers under the assumption that no first-class art could have been done by a women.

One famous artist is Christine de Pisan , she was a major feminist influence in the middle-ages, she was the daughter of an Italian astloger; her father wanted her to be educated, so she learned French, Latin, arithmetic, and geometry. She used her skill as a writer and poetess to earn a living.

2. Medecine.

?Overall, the net progress of medieval medecine was rewarding, despite the lack of technology and the abundance of obstacles? (Rowling ). As the Church forbade male doctors to look at women?s bodies, women used to learn medecine and they were vital to the well-being of the population. But they were often forbidden to make a career of healing in cities.In the great medical school such as that in Salerno a student will have learned many usefull but basic informations: about hygiene, anatomy, urine analysis for the detection of disease… Tortula was at the head of a group who studied medecine in Salerno (Italy). Many of Tortula?s works were about information on some daring references and prescriptions about impotence and childbirth.

3. Politics.

In the middle-ages the major political system was feudalism and Women were not represented in the town councils so ordinary women had no voice in local politics.? Those who did involve themselves in politics were wealthy, clerical, or upper-class; and their politics were often on an international scale? ( gies and gies, city 53-4). One of the most powerful force in Church and secular politics was Eleanor of Aquitaine, queen of Louis VII of France and later queen consort of the younger Henry II of England. It is said that during the crusade Louis VII took her with him and that she led an army of ladies all dressed in armor.

4. Religion.

In the early middle-ages woman was viewed as an instrument of evil, she rose in men?s esteem in the later middle-ages due to cult of the ?Virgin Mary?. Many dedicated themselves to the church for many reasons, the most common one was that they were in security and felt protected by God. For them, the nuns, God became their lives it was a question of true piety.

Nunnery life was based on routine and regularity.

Compare to Christian women jewish had some more freedom, for exemple they were able to divorce her husband. On the contrary Moslems women had decidedly less freedom and often still do, medieval moslem documents were there for only addressed to men, instructing them how to traet their wives; and polygamy was also permitted.One of the middle-ages? most important contributors was Hildegarde of Bingen, she entered a couvent at an early age, and she experienced many visions which were supported by the Pope Eugenius who encouraged her to keep writing. Her writing and poetry and music have survived making her one of the true medieval feminists.

5. Trade.

?Women were successful in a number of diverse professions, professions which relied not only on mere donkey work but also on skill and intelligece?( Uitz 24).In fact as women had many free time they made profit of this time in ?trading?!

As boys, girls were allowed to work until the age of foureteen… Women practiced many trades : in cottage industry, small businesses and big businesses, for the last one it was more difficult for women because these were people engaged in long-distance trade; and women faced abduction, murder, and rape from vagabonds. Rose of burford was an english trader who proved like the other women traders that women as men could be effective and profitable traders. Rose became more active in trades at the death of her husband who loaned money to King Edouard II, and Edouard had not paid his dept so Rose managed to collect the dept from the King without

?getting her head chopped off?.

6. War.

Despite the stereotype of medieval women which persists today women did not only stay home, and the last place where people expected to find a women was in the army although it is true that the majority of soldiers were men it is also true that there were women in the army; and more over there were entire compagnies of female warriors!!! There were two ways to became a knight: by holding land under a knight?s fee, or being made a knight or inducted into an order of knighthood; for women there were exemples of both cases. Joan of Arc is probably the best known medieval warrior, may be because the injustice of her death ( she was burned, because she was found guilty of witchcraft and wearing a man?s clothes).

As a teenager, she believed hearing voices telling her to help the future Charles who sent her to raise the siege of Orleans which she did successfully.

An in depth analysis of the evidence forces us to conclued that the role of medieval women was as important as men?s, and if we did not study their history in class it is because still today we leave in a society of men conducted by men…But little by little we are going to an amelioration of this situation of inequality…

III.MEDIEVAL?S WOMEN INFLUENCE ON MODERN SOCIETY.

1. An important contribution in many areas.

As we show it in the two first parts women were also present in all kinds of businesses during the middle ages. They had many difficulties because of their limited rights in their families and in the society, but they changed the world… We cannot imagine how the works of those female artists or the fight of female warriors played a role that cannot be ignored!

When studying history we could understand how it is important to know and understand not only the past but men?s and women?s actions, social or poltical events in order to have a better understanding of our present.

2. Equality.

Modern women should be very grateful for their ancestor women, because thanks to them our life is better, for exemple today the legislation protects women from abuse. And in many other cases we can enjoy a better situation than before, as in marriages, even the concept is basically the same we are happy to be more free to decide…( of course many countries are still late…). We cannot ignore the fact that still today many efforst had to be done but the future could be just better.

Conclusion:

When starting this work i was afraid about how to find documents and informations about medieval women, but finally i discovered that there are to many things to say about those women. They were not only simple participants in the middle-ages they were also author and writer of this past…

We can easily understand now that they played a very important role and that still today behind many concepts of our modern society we can find their influence; more over they have to be in peace because today a new generation of women will continue what did they began…

Bibliography:

My work was exlusively based on web sites and notes from my civilization II :

http://www.distinguishedwomen.com/ http:/www.geocities.com/

http:/www.killeenroors.com/link/women.html/

http:/www.millersv.edu/

http://www.thinkquest.org/

http:/www.womeninworldhistory.com/

Composition and rethorics II

Theme: In the CASEBOOK on Ralph Ellison?s ? battle royal ?, racial issues are addressed both by the author and other influential contributors. What insights do such works offer about Black identity in America.

Civilisation II

Mr Rutherford.

Introduction:

The Middle-Ages are a very intresting age that we study in history classes, I recall learning about kings, statesman, people who wielded power…etc…

But usually it left me with an impression that women did not contribute much of significance to our civilization other than caretakers of their families. Althought women contributed to our culture in many diffrent ways, in fact women accomplished far more than we officially give them credit for. Even today, women?s contributions are acknowledged less readily than men?s by history book writers.

That?s why the purpose of this study is to show how women had a major place during this era, and that those women did not only stay home they also ruled lands, owned businesses and wrote literature. With this aim in view this paper will describe first of all the status of medieval women and what was their position before turning to the second part, here we will hope to examine and describe some influent feminin figures of the Middle-Ages. Finally, we shall examine and explain the influence of those women on our modern society.

I.THE STATUS OF WOMEN.

1- Women?s Positions:

A- In family.

a) Marriage.

In this ages girls were brought up to expect to be married, and the age of consent was seven! Althought the marriage is an institution which requires trust, love and devotion in the middle ages the choice of a husband was made by the parents ?Marriage was by arrangement; no sensible family would allow he possession of valuable lands and property to be jeopardized by casual alliances? ( Chamberlain 57).The dowry was a sort of marriage transaction, it might consist of a little land, or of money or livestock. Once the couple married the role of the wife was very important, while her husband went away on trips she was in charge of the household.

When he needed the husband was allowed to beat his wife, it was legal to inflict to her injuries and moreover the woman was not allowed to make the decision of divorce.?Laws continued to allow husbands to divorce their wives, but not wives their husbands? ( Herlirlihy 51).

b) Birth and Childhood.

Births in general took place at home with the help of a midwife. Babies were baptized at the church when they did not die because the childhood at this time was very risky, a baby could die from many illness and accidents.

The little girl had to help her mother in the ?indoors? tasks around the age of eight but it depended of her social-class, of course.

c) Death.

A widow automatically received an inheritance from his late husband?s property. She often could remarry someone else or keep her independence. Women?s life expectancy was twenty-four and we also know that a medieval woman at thirty might resemble a modern woman at sixty.

d) Female Heroes.

As we saw before the wife had an important role in her marriage, when the husband was absent she had to be a ?business manager? particuliarly during the crusades where it was frequent that the men never returned, that?s why many women had to administer and protect their property add to that they also had to take care of childrens. Women often were called to defend their homes or castles although we can imagine the emotinal state of those women, how the men?s absence had an important effect.

B- In Society.

a) Education.

Women?s education depended on their social status , for exemple the nuns were limited in the study of the bible thanks to that they knew how to write and read but it was not the same case for all women. Men thought that a woman should remain illetrate, this fact may contribute to our belief that medieval women were uneducated. But little by little women had access to education, of course nuns, noble women and married women were allowed to learn how to read and write.

Then people realized that women were more ?useful? when they were educated, and that they were as able as men to learn.

b) Contact with the outside world.

Women were not in contact with the outside world very frequently, they were completely controlled by men, during the chilhood from age three until twelve they had an equal freedom to boys but later they are supervised by fathers and brothers in order to preserve their chastity, there for it was forbidden for her to be engaged in a private conversation or to be in the town unescorted. This said we must take in consideration the fact that for married-women these restrictions were partially relaxed, they were allowed to participate in religious and domestic duties in the town.

c) Sports.

Women in sports during the middle ages is not a very popular topic, we also know many things about the Olimpics but women were they involved in sports? Yes ! some women of the ?western world? were athletes, they were involved in swimming, boating, and other sports.

d) Brewing.

As water was usually polluted and unhealthy brewing ale was an important activity occuped by women. ?the actual process of brewing ale was a very tedious procedure. It entailed soaking barely for several days, then drainingthe water and germinating the barely. After germination, the malt was dried and ground, hot water added, and the wort drained off to which herbs or yeast were added as a final touch.? (Hanawalt). So in order to provide their family medieval women brewed, and also sold excess to make profit.

e) Clothing.

Of course the quality and the quantity of medieval women?s clothes depended mostly on their social class. While queens wore very elaborated gowns, peasants wore ill-fitting hand-me-downs.

At this time women wore long dresses, or shift, petticoats, surcoats; their shoes were carved wooden bottoms with leather laces.

In this part our argument was essencially that women?s positions during the middle ages was considered by the social theorists primarly with the family because it was the unit of the society.

II. INFLUENT WOMEN IN MANY AREAS.

1. Arts.

There were many feminin artists during the middle-ages : in Literature, Visual Arts, Theatre, Dance, and Music. One reason why women artists were more easily forgot was that they had traditionally changed their names when married. But there is another reason, many works done by women have often been re-assigned to their male teachers under the assumption that no first-class art could have been done by a women.

One famous artist is Christine de Pisan , she was a major feminist influence in the middle-ages, she was the daughter of an Italian astloger; her father wanted her to be educated, so she learned French, Latin, arithmetic, and geometry. She used her skill as a writer and poetess to earn a living.

2. Medecine.

?Overall, the net progress of medieval medecine was rewarding, despite the lack of technology and the abundance of obstacles? (Rowling ). As the Church forbade male doctors to look at women?s bodies, women used to learn medecine and they were vital to the well-being of the population. But they were often forbidden to make a career of healing in cities.In the great medical school such as that in Salerno a student will have learned many usefull but basic informations: about hygiene, anatomy, urine analysis for the detection of disease… Tortula was at the head of a group who studied medecine in Salerno (Italy). Many of Tortula?s works were about information on some daring references and prescriptions about impotence and childbirth.

3. Politics.

In the middle-ages the major political system was feudalism and Women were not represented in the town councils so ordinary women had no voice in local politics.? Those who did involve themselves in politics were wealthy, clerical, or upper-class; and their politics were often on an international scale? ( gies and gies, city 53-4). One of the most powerful force in Church and secular politics was Eleanor of Aquitaine, queen of Louis VII of France and later queen consort of the younger Henry II of England. It is said that during the crusade Louis VII took her with him and that she led an army of ladies all dressed in armor.

4. Religion.

In the early middle-ages woman was viewed as an instrument of evil, she rose in men?s esteem in the later middle-ages due to cult of the ?Virgin Mary?. Many dedicated themselves to the church for many reasons, the most common one was that they were in security and felt protected by God. For them, the nuns, God became their lives it was a question of true piety.

Nunnery life was based on routine and regularity.

Compare to Christian women jewish had some more freedom, for exemple they were able to divorce her husband. On the contrary Moslems women had decidedly less freedom and often still do, medieval moslem documents were there for only addressed to men, instructing them how to traet their wives; and polygamy was also permitted.One of the middle-ages? most important contributors was Hildegarde of Bingen, she entered a couvent at an early age, and she experienced many visions which were supported by the Pope Eugenius who encouraged her to keep writing. Her writing and poetry and music have survived making her one of the true medieval feminists.

5. Trade.

?Women were successful in a number of diverse professions, professions which relied not only on mere donkey work but also on skill and intelligece?( Uitz 24).In fact as women had many free time they made profit of this time in ?trading?!

As boys, girls were allowed to work until the age of foureteen… Women practiced many trades : in cottage industry, small businesses and big businesses, for the last one it was more difficult for women because these were people engaged in long-distance trade; and women faced abduction, murder, and rape from vagabonds. Rose of burford was an english trader who proved like the other women traders that women as men could be effective and profitable traders. Rose became more active in trades at the death of her husband who loaned money to King Edouard II, and Edouard had not paid his dept so Rose managed to collect the dept from the King without

?getting her head chopped off?.

6. War.

Despite the stereotype of medieval women which persists today women did not only stay home, and the last place where people expected to find a women was in the army although it is true that the majority of soldiers were men it is also true that there were women in the army; and more over there were entire compagnies of female warriors!!! There were two ways to became a knight: by holding land under a knight?s fee, or being made a knight or inducted into an order of knighthood; for women there were exemples of both cases. Joan of Arc is probably the best known medieval warrior, may be because the injustice of her death ( she was burned, because she was found guilty of witchcraft and wearing a man?s clothes).

As a teenager, she believed hearing voices telling her to help the future Charles who sent her to raise the siege of Orleans which she did successfully.

An in depth analysis of the evidence forces us to conclued that the role of medieval women was as important as men?s, and if we did not study their history in class it is because still today we leave in a society of men conducted by men…But little by little we are going to an amelioration of this situation of inequality…

III.MEDIEVAL?S WOMEN INFLUENCE ON MODERN SOCIETY.

1. An important contribution in many areas.

As we show it in the two first parts women were also present in all kinds of businesses during the middle ages. They had many difficulties because of their limited rights in their families and in the society, but they changed the world… We cannot imagine how the works of those female artists or the fight of female warriors played a role that cannot be ignored!

When studying history we could understand how it is important to know and understand not only the past but men?s and women?s actions, social or poltical events in order to have a better understanding of our present.

2. Equality.

Modern women should be very grateful for their ancestor women, because thanks to them our life is better, for exemple today the legislation protects women from abuse. And in many other cases we can enjoy a better situation than before, as in marriages, even the concept is basically the same we are happy to be more free to decide…( of course many countries are still late…). We cannot ignore the fact that still today many efforst had to be done but the future could be just better.

Conclusion:

When starting this work i was afraid about how to find documents and informations about medieval women, but finally i discovered that there are to many things to say about those women. They were not only simple participants in the middle-ages they were also author and writer of this past…

We can easily understand now that they played a very important role and that still today behind many concepts of our modern society we can find their influence; more over they have to be in peace because today a new generation of women will continue what did they began…

Bibliography:

My work was exlusively based on web sites and notes from my civilization II :

http://www.distinguishedwomen.com/ http:/www.geocities.com/

http:/www.killeenroors.com/link/women.html/

http:/www.millersv.edu/

http://www.thinkquest.org/

http:/www.womeninworldhistory.com/

Composition and rethorics II

Theme: In the CASEBOOK on Ralph Ellison?s ? battle royal ?, racial issues are addressed both by the author and other influential contributors. What insights do such works offer about Black identity in America.

Civilisation II

Mr Rutherford.

Introduction:

The Middle-Ages are a very intresting age that we study in history classes, I recall learning about kings, statesman, people who wielded power…etc…

But usually it left me with an impression that women did not contribute much of significance to our civilization other than caretakers of their families. Althought women contributed to our culture in many diffrent ways, in fact women accomplished far more than we officially give them credit for. Even today, women?s contributions are acknowledged less readily than men?s by history book writers.

That?s why the purpose of this study is to show how women had a major place during this era, and that those women did not only stay home they also ruled lands, owned businesses and wrote literature. With this aim in view this paper will describe first of all the status of medieval women and what was their position before turning to the second part, here we will hope to examine and describe some influent feminin figures of the Middle-Ages. Finally, we shall examine and explain the influence of those women on our modern society.

I.THE STATUS OF WOMEN.

1- Women?s Positions:

A- In family.

a) Marriage.

In this ages girls were brought up to expect to be married, and the age of consent was seven! Althought the marriage is an institution which requires trust, love and devotion in the middle ages the choice of a husband was made by the parents ?Marriage was by arrangement; no sensible family would allow he possession of valuable lands and property to be jeopardized by casual alliances? ( Chamberlain 57).The dowry was a sort of marriage transaction, it might consist of a little land, or of money or livestock. Once the couple married the role of the wife was very important, while her husband went away on trips she was in charge of the household.

When he needed the husband was allowed to beat his wife, it was legal to inflict to her injuries and moreover the woman was not allowed to make the decision of divorce.?Laws continued to allow husbands to divorce their wives, but not wives their husbands? ( Herlirlihy 51).

b) Birth and Childhood.

Births in general took place at home with the help of a midwife. Babies were baptized at the church when they did not die because the childhood at this time was very risky, a baby could die from many illness and accidents.

The little girl had to help her mother in the ?indoors? tasks around the age of eight but it depended of her social-class, of course.

c) Death.

A widow automatically received an inheritance from his late husband?s property. She often could remarry someone else or keep her independence. Women?s life expectancy was twenty-four and we also know that a medieval woman at thirty might resemble a modern woman at sixty.

d) Female Heroes.

As we saw before the wife had an important role in her marriage, when the husband was absent she had to be a ?business manager? particuliarly during the crusades where it was frequent that the men never returned, that?s why many women had to administer and protect their property add to that they also had to take care of childrens. Women often were called to defend their homes or castles although we can imagine the emotinal state of those women, how the men?s absence had an important effect.

B- In Society.

a) Education.

Women?s education depended on their social status , for exemple the nuns were limited in the study of the bible thanks to that they knew how to write and read but it was not the same case for all women. Men thought that a woman should remain illetrate, this fact may contribute to our belief that medieval women were uneducated. But little by little women had access to education, of course nuns, noble women and married women were allowed to learn how to read and write.

Then people realized that women were more ?useful? when they were educated, and that they were as able as men to learn.

b) Contact with the outside world.

Women were not in contact with the outside world very frequently, they were completely controlled by men, during the chilhood from age three until twelve they had an equal freedom to boys but later they are supervised by fathers and brothers in order to preserve their chastity, there for it was forbidden for her to be engaged in a private conversation or to be in the town unescorted. This said we must take in consideration the fact that for married-women these restrictions were partially relaxed, they were allowed to participate in religious and domestic duties in the town.

c) Sports.

Women in sports during the middle ages is not a very popular topic, we also know many things about the Olimpics but women were they involved in sports? Yes ! some women of the ?western world? were athletes, they were involved in swimming, boating, and other sports.

d) Brewing.

As water was usually polluted and unhealthy brewing ale was an important activity occuped by women. ?the actual process of brewing ale was a very tedious procedure. It entailed soaking barely for several days, then drainingthe water and germinating the barely. After germination, the malt was dried and ground, hot water added, and the wort drained off to which herbs or yeast were added as a final touch.? (Hanawalt). So in order to provide their family medieval women brewed, and also sold excess to make profit.

e) Clothing.

Of course the quality and the quantity of medieval women?s clothes depended mostly on their social class. While queens wore very elaborated gowns, peasants wore ill-fitting hand-me-downs.

At this time women wore long dresses, or shift, petticoats, surcoats; their shoes were carved wooden bottoms with leather laces.

In this part our argument was essencially that women?s positions during the middle ages was considered by the social theorists primarly with the family because it was the unit of the society.

II. INFLUENT WOMEN IN MANY AREAS.

1. Arts.

There were many feminin artists during the middle-ages : in Literature, Visual Arts, Theatre, Dance, and Music. One reason why women artists were more easily forgot was that they had traditionally changed their names when married. But there is another reason, many works done by women have often been re-assigned to their male teachers under the assumption that no first-class art could have been done by a women.

One famous artist is Christine de Pisan , she was a major feminist influence in the middle-ages, she was the daughter of an Italian astloger; her father wanted her to be educated, so she learned French, Latin, arithmetic, and geometry. She used her skill as a writer and poetess to earn a living.

2. Medecine.

?Overall, the net progress of medieval medecine was rewarding, despite the lack of technology and the abundance of obstacles? (Rowling ). As the Church forbade male doctors to look at women?s bodies, women used to learn medecine and they were vital to the well-being of the population. But they were often forbidden to make a career of healing in cities.In the great medical school such as that in Salerno a student will have learned many usefull but basic informations: about hygiene, anatomy, urine analysis for the detection of disease… Tortula was at the head of a group who studied medecine in Salerno (Italy). Many of Tortula?s works were about information on some daring references and prescriptions about impotence and childbirth.

3. Politics.

In the middle-ages the major political system was feudalism and Women were not represented in the town councils so ordinary women had no voice in local politics.? Those who did involve themselves in politics were wealthy, clerical, or upper-class; and their politics were often on an international scale? ( gies and gies, city 53-4). One of the most powerful force in Church and secular politics was Eleanor of Aquitaine, queen of Louis VII of France and later queen consort of the younger Henry II of England. It is said that during the crusade Louis VII took her with him and that she led an army of ladies all dressed in armor.

4. Religion.

In the early middle-ages woman was viewed as an instrument of evil, she rose in men?s esteem in the later middle-ages due to cult of the ?Virgin Mary?. Many dedicated themselves to the church for many reasons, the most common one was that they were in security and felt protected by God. For them, the nuns, God became their lives it was a question of true piety.

Nunnery life was based on routine and regularity.

Compare to Christian women jewish had some more freedom, for exemple they were able to divorce her husband. On the contrary Moslems women had decidedly less freedom and often still do, medieval moslem documents were there for only addressed to men, instructing them how to traet their wives; and polygamy was also permitted.One of the middle-ages? most important contributors was Hildegarde of Bingen, she entered a couvent at an early age, and she experienced many visions which were supported by the Pope Eugenius who encouraged her to keep writing. Her writing and poetry and music have survived making her one of the true medieval feminists.

5. Trade.

?Women were successful in a number of diverse professions, professions which relied not only on mere donkey work but also on skill and intelligece?( Uitz 24).In fact as women had many free time they made profit of this time in ?trading?!

As boys, girls were allowed to work until the age of foureteen… Women practiced many trades : in cottage industry, small businesses and big businesses, for the last one it was more difficult for women because these were people engaged in long-distance trade; and women faced abduction, murder, and rape from vagabonds. Rose of burford was an english trader who proved like the other women traders that women as men could be effective and profitable traders. Rose became more active in trades at the death of her husband who loaned money to King Edouard II, and Edouard had not paid his dept so Rose managed to collect the dept from the King without

?getting her head chopped off?.

6. War.

Despite the stereotype of medieval women which persists today women did not only stay home, and the last place where people expected to find a women was in the army although it is true that the majority of soldiers were men it is also true that there were women in the army; and more over there were entire compagnies of female warriors!!! There were two ways to became a knight: by holding land under a knight?s fee, or being made a knight or inducted into an order of knighthood; for women there were exemples of both cases. Joan of Arc is probably the best known medieval warrior, may be because the injustice of her death ( she was burned, because she was found guilty of witchcraft and wearing a man?s clothes).

As a teenager, she believed hearing voices telling her to help the future Charles who sent her to raise the siege of Orleans which she did successfully.

An in depth analysis of the evidence forces us to conclued that the role of medieval women was as important as men?s, and if we did not study their history in class it is because still today we leave in a society of men conducted by men…But little by little we are going to an amelioration of this situation of inequality…

III.MEDIEVAL?S WOMEN INFLUENCE ON MODERN SOCIETY.

1. An important contribution in many areas.

As we show it in the two first parts women were also present in all kinds of businesses during the middle ages. They had many difficulties because of their limited rights in their families and in the society, but they changed the world… We cannot imagine how the works of those female artists or the fight of female warriors played a role that cannot be ignored!

When studying history we could understand how it is important to know and understand not only the past but men?s and women?s actions, social or poltical events in order to have a better understanding of our present.

2. Equality.

Modern women should be very grateful for their ancestor women, because thanks to them our life is better, for exemple today the legislation protects women from abuse. And in many other cases we can enjoy a better situation than before, as in marriages, even the concept is basically the same we are happy to be more free to decide…( of course many countries are still late…). We cannot ignore the fact that still today many efforst had to be done but the future could be just better.

Conclusion:

When starting this work i was afraid about how to find documents and informations about medieval women, but finally i discovered that there are to many things to say about those women. They were not only simple participants in the middle-ages they were also author and writer of this past…

We can easily understand now that they played a very important role and that still today behind many concepts of our modern society we can find their influence; more over they have to be in peace because today a new generation of women will continue what did they began…

Bibliography:

My work was exlusively based on web sites and notes from my civilization II :

http://www.distinguishedwomen.com/ http:/www.geocities.com/

http:/www.killeenroors.com/link/women.html/

http:/www.millersv.edu/

http://www.thinkquest.org/

http:/www.womeninworldhistory.com/

Composition and rethorics II

Theme: In the CASEBOOK on Ralph Ellison?s ? battle royal ?, racial issues are addressed both by the author and other influential contributors. What insights do such works offer about Black identity in America.

Civilisation II

Mr Rutherford.

Introduction:

The Middle-Ages are a very intresting age that we study in history classes, I recall learning about kings, statesman, people who wielded power…etc…

But usually it left me with an impression that women did not contribute much of significance to our civilization other than caretakers of their families. Althought women contributed to our culture in many diffrent ways, in fact women accomplished far more than we officially give them credit for. Even today, women?s contributions are acknowledged less readily than men?s by history book writers.

That?s why the purpose of this study is to show how women had a major place during this era, and that those women did not only stay home they also ruled lands, owned businesses and wrote literature. With this aim in view this paper will describe first of all the status of medieval women and what was their position before turning to the second part, here we will hope to examine and describe some influent feminin figures of the Middle-Ages. Finally, we shall examine and explain the influence of those women on our modern society.

I.THE STATUS OF WOMEN.

1- Women?s Positions:

A- In family.

a) Marriage.

In this ages girls were brought up to expect to be married, and the age of consent was seven! Althought the marriage is an institution which requires trust, love and devotion in the middle ages the choice of a husband was made by the parents ?Marriage was by arrangement; no sensible family would allow he possession of valuable lands and property to be jeopardized by casual alliances? ( Chamberlain 57).The dowry was a sort of marriage transaction, it might consist of a little land, or of money or livestock. Once the couple married the role of the wife was very important, while her husband went away on trips she was in charge of the household.

When he needed the husband was allowed to beat his wife, it was legal to inflict to her injuries and moreover the woman was not allowed to make the decision of divorce.?Laws continued to allow husbands to divorce their wives, but not wives their husbands? ( Herlirlihy 51).

b) Birth and Childhood.

Births in general took place at home with the help of a midwife. Babies were baptized at the church when they did not die because the childhood at this time was very risky, a baby could die from many illness and accidents.

The little girl had to help her mother in the ?indoors? tasks around the age of eight but it depended of her social-class, of course.

c) Death.

A widow automatically received an inheritance from his late husband?s property. She often could remarry someone else or keep her independence. Women?s life expectancy was twenty-four and we also know that a medieval woman at thirty might resemble a modern woman at sixty.

d) Female Heroes.

As we saw before the wife had an important role in her marriage, when the husband was absent she had to be a ?business manager? particuliarly during the crusades where it was frequent that the men never returned, that?s why many women had to administer and protect their property add to that they also had to take care of childrens. Women often were called to defend their homes or castles although we can imagine the emotinal state of those women, how the men?s absence had an important effect.

B- In Society.

a) Education.

Women?s education depended on their social status , for exemple the nuns were limited in the study of the bible thanks to that they knew how to write and read but it was not the same case for all women. Men thought that a woman should remain illetrate, this fact may contribute to our belief that medieval women were uneducated. But little by little women had access to education, of course nuns, noble women and married women were allowed to learn how to read and write.

Then people realized that women were more ?useful? when they were educated, and that they were as able as men to learn.

b) Contact with the outside world.

Women were not in contact with the outside world very frequently, they were completely controlled by men, during the chilhood from age three until twelve they had an equal freedom to boys but later they are supervised by fathers and brothers in order to preserve their chastity, there for it was forbidden for her to be engaged in a private conversation or to be in the town unescorted. This said we must take in consideration the fact that for married-women these restrictions were partially relaxed, they were allowed to participate in religious and domestic duties in the town.

c) Sports.

Women in sports during the middle ages is not a very popular topic, we also know many things about the Olimpics but women were they involved in sports? Yes ! some women of the ?western world? were athletes, they were involved in swimming, boating, and other sports.

d) Brewing.

As water was usually polluted and unhealthy brewing ale was an important activity occuped by women. ?the actual process of brewing ale was a very tedious procedure. It entailed soaking barely for several days, then drainingthe water and germinating the barely. After germination, the malt was dried and ground, hot water added, and the wort drained off to which herbs or yeast were added as a final touch.? (Hanawalt). So in order to provide their family medieval women brewed, and also sold excess to make profit.

e) Clothing.

Of course the quality and the quantity of medieval women?s clothes depended mostly on their social class. While queens wore very elaborated gowns, peasants wore ill-fitting hand-me-downs.

At this time women wore long dresses, or shift, petticoats, surcoats; their shoes were carved wooden bottoms with leather laces.

In this part our argument was essencially that women?s positions during the middle ages was considered by the social theorists primarly with the family because it was the unit of the society.

II. INFLUENT WOMEN IN MANY AREAS.

1. Arts.

There were many feminin artists during the middle-ages : in Literature, Visual Arts, Theatre, Dance, and Music. One reason why women artists were more easily forgot was that they had traditionally changed their names when married. But there is another reason, many works done by women have often been re-assigned to their male teachers under the assumption that no first-class art could have been done by a women.

One famous artist is Christine de Pisan , she was a major feminist influence in the middle-ages, she was the daughter of an Italian astloger; her father wanted her to be educated, so she learned French, Latin, arithmetic, and geometry. She used her skill as a writer and poetess to earn a living.

2. Medecine.

?Overall, the net progress of medieval medecine was rewarding, despite the lack of technology and the abundance of obstacles? (Rowling ). As the Church forbade male doctors to look at women?s bodies, women used to learn medecine and they were vital to the well-being of the population. But they were often forbidden to make a career of healing in cities.In the great medical school such as that in Salerno a student will have learned many usefull but basic informations: about hygiene, anatomy, urine analysis for the detection of disease… Tortula was at the head of a group who studied medecine in Salerno (Italy). Many of Tortula?s works were about information on some daring references and prescriptions about impotence and childbirth.

3. Politics.

In the middle-ages the major political system was feudalism and Women were not represented in the town councils so ordinary women had no voice in local politics.? Those who did involve themselves in politics were wealthy, clerical, or upper-class; and their politics were often on an international scale? ( gies and gies, city 53-4). One of the most powerful force in Church and secular politics was Eleanor of Aquitaine, queen of Louis VII of France and later queen consort of the younger Henry II of England. It is said that during the crusade Louis VII took her with him and that she led an army of ladies all dressed in armor.

4. Religion.

In the early middle-ages woman was viewed as an instrument of evil, she rose in men?s esteem in the later middle-ages due to cult of the ?Virgin Mary?. Many dedicated themselves to the church for many reasons, the most common one was that they were in security and felt protected by God. For them, the nuns, God became their lives it was a question of true piety.

Nunnery life was based on routine and regularity.

Compare to Christian women jewish had some more freedom, for exemple they were able to divorce her husband. On the contrary Moslems women had decidedly less freedom and often still do, medieval moslem documents were there for only addressed to men, instructing them how to traet their wives; and polygamy was also permitted.One of the middle-ages? most important contributors was Hildegarde of Bingen, she entered a couvent at an early age, and she experienced many visions which were supported by the Pope Eugenius who encouraged her to keep writing. Her writing and poetry and music have survived making her one of the true medieval feminists.

5. Trade.

?Women were successful in a number of diverse professions, professions which relied not only on mere donkey work but also on skill and intelligece?( Uitz 24).In fact as women had many free time they made profit of this time in ?trading?!

As boys, girls were allowed to work until the age of foureteen… Women practiced many trades : in cottage industry, small businesses and big businesses, for the last one it was more difficult for women because these were people engaged in long-distance trade; and women faced abduction, murder, and rape from vagabonds. Rose of burford was an english trader who proved like the other women traders that women as men could be effective and profitable traders. Rose became more active in trades at the death of her husband who loaned money to King Edouard II, and Edouard had not paid his dept so Rose managed to collect the dept from the King without

?getting her head chopped off?.

6. War.

Despite the stereotype of medieval women which persists today women did not only stay home, and the last place where people expected to find a women was in the army although it is true that the majority of soldiers were men it is also true that there were women in the army; and more over there were entire compagnies of female warriors!!! There were two ways to became a kni


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