(Student number) 1
The roles of men and women have been changing in this era of affirmative action; women can almost do as much as men can. However, it has not always been this cozy for the female population. More often than not, women were seen as inferior in many cultures around the world, and ancient Greece and Rome were no different. Different cultures around the world allowed their men and womenfolk to carry out some roles while they restricted them from involving them in some others. While some communities were patriarchal, others were matriarchal and had defined gender roles. Did the gender matter so much in any society that they had to define what women could do, acquire or involve themselves in? An in-depth examination of the gender roles in Greek and Roman societies shows that there existed many differences and similarities in their gender behaviors. Literature analysis reveals that while the gender roles have evolved since the days of old, the evolution has been felt more in the female than it has in the male populations. The gender roles determined the social structures and shaped the political and cultural spheres as well.
The late years of the 20th Century brought about a great interest in feminism and gender roles. While women were typically viewed as lesser beings as compared to the menfolk, this period sought to elevate women to a level where they would favorably compete with men in various aspects of life; socio-cultural and political surroundings. Various literature has proven that there existed a lot of similarities and differences between ancient Greek and Roman societies. From the classical antiquity period through to the present times, societies have been changing. The contemporary society has some preserved similarities with the ancient one, and at the same time, they have acquired traits particular for a given community.
Many ancient authors of Greek and Roman mythologies have documented the roles of both men and women in both societies. Two of such works is the Aeneid and the Odyssey. While such works have discussed gender roles and normative behavior in depth, there lacks a comparative approach to these works and a discussion of how male and female populations carried themselves regarding their community-given roles. This current study seeks to compare and contrast the gender roles between the Greek and Roman societies by looking at the similarities and the differences between them.
Similarities between the roles in Greek and Rome
According to Aristotle, a Greek author, the roles of men and women differ in the two societies. The men are the breadwinners and acquire assets and property. Women are expected to administer and manage the property acquired by the men. The male population was supposed to carry out all the outdoor work while the females carried out the indoor work (Hughes, 377). Stoic Hierocles,...