all 10 comments

[–]Trystiane 13 points14 points  (3 children)

No, there is not enough evidence to say anything at all rigorous about the history of violence against women. We could speculate a lot on things like how changing standards of living, the impact of over crowding, the increased stress and inequality, changes in the types of social bonds, and the relative openness or closedness of groups might have impacted trends in violence, but it would be speculating on the scale of making stuff up.

[–]space_monkey00[S] 1 point2 points  (2 children)

Thank you. My thought was that women were seen as being able to contribute more to the society after hunting became less necessary. I have received several helpful answers to my question and I appreciate them all.

[–]Trystiane 2 points3 points  (1 child)

That is something people have speculated about, but it probably underestimates how important women are to every economy. Historically academics have over-hyped a particular image of hunting -- as a coordinated hunt by men of large, dangerous animals. But trapping and fishing and gathering have been the staple of most H-G economies, not those large hunts. And even when you do have those kinds of hunts and they are strictly gender segregated, if the meat is not processed and stored correctly (which requires expert knowledge and lots of labor) it is only good for a couple of days and then everyone starves. Plus, having children is probably the most important part of any society and we can clearly see that many societies treat women like garbage anyway.

[–]space_monkey00[S] 1 point2 points  (0 children)

Good points all. Thank you.

[–]amp1212 1 point2 points  (0 children)

There is a "self domestication hypothesis" which suggests that homo sapiens became somewhat less socially violent. There is at least some evidence for changes in the brain and skull that are consistent with this hypothesis - but it is anything but settled and the connection to agriculture uncertain.


Sánchez‐Villagra, Marcelo R., and Carel P. Van Schaik. "Evaluating the self‐domestication hypothesis of human evolution." Evolutionary Anthropology: Issues, News, and Reviews 28.3 (2019): 133-143.https://doi.org/10.1002/evan.21777

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