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Thread: Prehistoric women worked so much

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    Prehistoric women worked so much

    Prehistoric women worked so much their arms were stronger than today’s female rowers

    Tilling soil, harvesting, and grinding grain by hand

    https://www.theverge.com/2017/11/29/...es-archaeology

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    Advisor Angela's Avatar
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    These academics obviously haven't had much experience with farm people even today, or with women from pastoral societies for that matter. This shouldn't have been such a surprise to them.

    Everywhere I've been in Europe where things still haven't changed so much you see women on farms working in the fields, forking and bailing hay, carrying huge loads, and on and on. On top of that they have to give birth to and raise multiple children. They not sitting around eating bon-bons and watching soaps.

    My mother, who was 5'6" tall but only weighed 112 pounds and looked as if the wind would blow her away was stronger than most men from working on her uncle's farm after her mother died.

    Maybe it's because I know a lot about life before 1960, but none of this is a surprise to me. Women didn't have to go to a gym to get muscles.









    These were in 1950 believe it or not. There are lovely folk songs about it but it was back breaking work cleaning those clothes. My grandmother said you'd be bent over like that for the whole day. When it was over you could barely stand.


    They did dangerous things too.

    Don't get me wrong. The men worked like mules too, but the women had the added burden of child bearing in a time before modern medicine. My father's eldest sister (by 14 years) died in childbirth at 19. Nobody in the family every got over it.

    It wasn't any better in hunter-gatherer societies from what I can see. In fact, maybe the disparity between men and women was even greater. Just look at the life-style of the Indian tribes in the American southwest. The women set up the tee-pees, or yurts, or whatever, did the foraging, ground the corn if they had any, did all the cooking, scraped the hides to make clothes, minded the children, and then packed everything up and had to trudge endless miles with babies at the breast and toddlers tugging on their skirts. In the middle of all that they had to be sexually available at all times. From what I've read, when the men weren't hunting or raiding other villages they were mainly sitting around telling stories. The grunt work fell to the women.

    There was a reason why my grandmother told me that each time she was pregnant (twelve times in all) she prayed it would be a boy. That's also why education was the all consuming goal for all her children: so that they didn't have to do that.


    Non si fa il proprio dovere perchè qualcuno ci dica grazie, lo si fa per principio, per se stessi, per la propria dignità. Oriana Fallaci

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    construction workers used to carry heavy loads all their lives
    nowadays it is forbidden, a bag of concrete weighs 25 kilo max and it is carried by meachanical means till the spot where it is to be opened

    we've all become sissies

    the study shows the monotonous, specialised work : they had strong arms and weak legs, as opposed to HG

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    Quote Originally Posted by Angela View Post
    That second girl on the left is really beautiful! She could have been a model. Goes to show everyone back then had to get their hands dirty.

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    1 members found this post helpful.
    Hard Working Women:


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    Quote Originally Posted by Jovialis View Post
    That second girl on the left is really beautiful!
    I mistakenly used a still from a film about le mondine called La Risaia, or "The Rice Field". I think that's the actress Elsa Martinelli from Toscana.

    I think she's absolutely stunning.



    It's a look they very much went for in the 60s in Italy as elsewhere...very lean, big eyes...sort of a modified Audrey Hepburn look.


    A little Jean Shrimpton too.

    In an earlier film about the mondine, the female lead was Silvana Mangano, who captured the look Italians, at least, were mad for at the time...equally beautiful to my mind, but much fuller, more womanly, maybe like a Sophia Loren or Claudia Cardinale.



    She was a chameleon too:



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    Possibly the the most dangerous and hardest task for a pre-modern era woman: Child birth

    It wasn't until the modern era that women began to outlive men on average and the main culprit was child bearing. In pre-Colombian mesoamerican societies child birth was even viewed as a battle and women who died during child birth were believed to enter the same heaven as warriors who died heroically on the battlefield. Even after surviving this "battle" there was no guarantee this child you fought for would live long. In some cultures children were not officially named until a few years after birth because so many would often die in infancy, it was a defense mechanism from becoming overly sentimental.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bicicleur View Post
    construction workers used to carry heavy loads all their lives
    nowadays it is forbidden, a bag of concrete weighs 25 kilo max and it is carried by meachanical means till the spot where it is to be opened

    we've all become sissies
    People used to walk fifteen miles to field carrying horses in the snow! Barefoot! Uphill! Both ways!"

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    Right comments here! Agree!
    the African women of a lot of traditionnal cultures are surely stronger in arms as in legs than a lot of our modern young men, and here (vertical) stature doesn't help! But no need to go so far: even our mothers were often stronger in arms than today young males of our evolved occidental societies... It's true I'm almost 69.

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    Quote Originally Posted by MOESAN View Post
    Right comments here! Agree!
    the African women of a lot of traditionnal cultures are surely stronger in arms as in legs than a lot of our modern young men, and here (vertical) stature doesn't help! But no need to go so far: even our mothers were often stronger in arms than today young males of our evolved occidental societies... It's true I'm almost 69.
    You can be younger and have that be the case. When you live in a basically "vertical" village, walk everywhere, and carry all your bags, you develop muscle.

    Heck, even kneading dough and rolling out pasta sheets can develop muscle, or mixing a cake, at least if you don't reach for those pasta machines and mix master. Just use your wooden spoon, for goodness sakes, you don't need to get a huge machine with tons of attachments dirty and then have to wash it and dry it.

    Men used to develop muscles more naturally too, when they actually pushed a lawn mower, or used a rake instead of a blower to get rid of the leaves. It irritates me to see all my neighbors hire poor Central Americans to do their lawns and flower beds and clean out their gutters (even if the workers also have these labor saving devices), and then go the gym to work on their muscles. They can't even put a hook on the wall to hang a picture.

    I guess my Dad spoiled me for other men. He never spent a minute in a gym, but he was muscular and strong till the day he died, and he knew how to put his hands to anything.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Jovialis View Post
    That second girl on the left is really beautiful! She could have been a model. Goes to show everyone back then had to get their hands dirty.
    If there was an erotic section in eupedia this picture would fly high.

    Sent from my SM-G903F using Eupedia Forum mobile app

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    @exceededminimum

    Dem whipperschnapps
    Last edited by davef; 03-12-17 at 09:42.
    mmmmmmmmm dooouuughhhnuuuutz

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    I'll never understand men, either, if I live to be 100. :) There's nothing erotic to me about that picture, even if one woman is a very beautiful actress. They look a mess.

    OK, normal looking women so we don't get distracted. Rice farming is back breaking work whether it's done in Southeast Asia or the Po Valley.




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    Maybe that explains why my grandmother walks and squats faster than my mother and aunts who already grew up in a much more modern and comfortable world. LOL

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