The position of women in ancient India has been a very complicated one because of the paradoxical statements in different religious scriptures and sometimes Essay On Medieval Women the click here text at different places.
The cultural history of India reveals that in India theoretically women enjoyed the status of devi goddess as described in many religious texts of Hindus, the majority community in India. Though woman enjoyed the theoretical importance which these texts outline for the wife who was defined ardhangini better-halfbut in practice she had a subservient position than man.
It was generally seen and believed that women had lower status with reference to power and influence than men in all spheres of life—family, community, religion and politics. Till recently, it was held that up to marriage, she is protected by her parents, during married life, she is looked after by her husband, and after the death of her husband, she was used to spend remaining years of her life under the roof of her children without any will or desire and rights in the family.
She was not allowed Essay On Medieval Women decide how money would be spent or invested. She did not have any money at her disposal. She had to take permission to spend money from her elders—father, brother or husband or any other male or female elder person in the family. In brief, she had no personality of her own.
Some scholars have explained this inferior status of women as a result of patriarchal code of living. The rigid codes of behaviour as outlined for women in Brahmanical texts were Essay On Medieval Women responsible for the low status of women in India. In the following paragraphs we will survey, in brief, the position of women in India from Rigvedic period to modern times. It is generally upheld on the basis of the instances depicted in religious texts e.
They had an honourable place in the society. They were not secluded from men and freely participated in public life.
They attended great assemblies and state occasions. They studied the Vedas and composed hymns. They also distinguished themselves in science and learning at their times. They were considered intellectual companies of their husbands, as the friends and loving helpers in the journey of life of their partners, in their religious duties and the centre of their domestic bliss. In Vedic times, women were not treated as inferior or subordinate but equal to men in all matters of life. They were given education and had a voice in the selection of their husband.
Marriage was regarded as a religious bond. Child marriage was unknown. Often there were love marriages click at this page as Gandharva Vivaha. Monogamy was a general rule. Essay On Medieval Women was almost unknown. Women enjoyed complete freedom in household matters. In the religious field, women enjoyed all rights and regularly participated in religious ceremonies.
What Was The Role Of Women In The Middle Ages?
In fact, the performance of religious ceremonies was considered invalid without wife joining her husband as she was regarded as ardhangini better-half. The references in the Rigveda to the life of a widow are very few but it was not characterized by restrictions and austerities as in the post-Vedic days. Remarriage of widows was allowed. The earlier Dharamsastra writers allowed divorce; Kautilya gave detailed rules of divorce. As regards sati, burning of the widow, Shakuntala Rao Sastri writes that the Rigveda does not mention anywhere the practice of the burning or burial of widows with their dead husbands.
As regards property rights, according to Vedic hymns, both husband and wife was joint owner of the property. Women inherited and possessed property, but their rights were limited. Thus, it may be concluded that in Vedic period women had equal rights with men. Their status was fairly high and they were treated as equals Essay On Medieval Women men in almost all spheres of life. The position enjoyed by read article in Vedic period deteriorated in post-Vedic period.
It was gradually degraded in the Puranic and Smriti periods. The description of position before BC shows that she enjoyed a fairly high status, though not to the extent that she enjoyed in Vedic period. It appears that several drastic changes that took place in the Indian society from about BC to the beginning of the Christian era led to the curtailment of freedom of women.
A daughter began to be regarded as curse. They were Essay On Medieval Women the right of inheritance and ownership of property.
Pre-puberty marriages came to be practised.
Practice of polygyny came to be tolerated. Some of the Dharamsastras mention about the prohibition of Niyoga and widow remarriage. The widow was asked to devote herself to an ascetic life at home. Marriage became an irrevocable union as far as the wife was concerned. The Smriti writers preached that the wife should look upon her husband as God. Widows were required to spend a life of penance and austerity. Sati had become popular by the 7th century AD.
In this period, women were regarded just as a means of Essay On Medieval Women the physical desires of men. This simple quotation is sufficient to prove that how disrespect was shown towards women. However, it is not out of place to mention here that Indian scriptures are full of paradoxical statements. At one place, women were regarded as goddess, held in Essay On Medieval Women esteem, where at other place in the same scripture, in some other context, they were regarded, no better than just slaves or chattels.
Husband and wife stood as equals before God. Up to this period purdah veil was not commonly observed by women. Divorce was, however, not permissible to them. Their position was not one of complete disability but one dictated by justice and fairness. Women used to help their male members of their family in economic pursuits. They Essay On Medieval Women accompanied their husband or other members of the family in hunting and agricultural pursuits.
In this Essay On Medieval Women, female infanticide, click marriage, purdah system, sati and slavery were the main social evils affecting the position of women. The birth of a female child began to be regarded as curse, a bad luck.
They were almost confined to the doors of their homes. Purdah system came to be rigorously followed. Women education was almost banned. More and more feeling of conservatism increased about women. She not only continued to hold low status in and outside home rather her position worsened in this period.
It is often said that in India the purdah veil system came click existence only after the arrival of Moghuls.
Troubadour songs and anecdotes reveal women who heroically fended for themselves while their husbands went on the Crusades. ADVERTISEMENTS: Essay on The Position of Women in India! The position of women in ancient India has been a very complicated one . We provide excellent essay writing service 24/7. Enjoy proficient essay writing and custom writing services provided by professional academic writers. Introduction. This toy knight comes from a rich harvest of archaeological finds, made in the mudbanks of the River Thames in London during the last 30 years. 2 Course Description In the history of western culture, the late medieval and early Renaissance period has traditionally been interpreted as the beginning.
Altekar, in his book. The Position of Women in Hindu Civilization writes: The revival of Sati, the prohibition of remarriage, the spread of Purdah and the greater prevalence of polygamy made her position very bad.
The dual standards of morality set by Essay On Medieval Women Smriti and other Smritis continue to prevail right up to now though some changes are visible in urban educated women. Though the British rulers initially decided not to interfere with the traditional social fabric of Indian people Hindus and as such they took no http://uht.me/essay-help/phd-ghostwriter-sites-gb.php to bring any change in the status of women in India.
It is only in the latter half of the 19th century and the first quarter of the 20th century that they took some steps to abolish or change some social customs through legislative measures. Through the efforts and the various movements launched by these great social leaders of the 19th century before independence, it had been possible to get many legislations passed and public opinion mobilized article source favour of some issues Essay On Medieval Women social reforms.
These steps have paved the way in removing the obstacles in the progress of women. Not only this, it had helped in eliminating inequalities Essay On Medieval Women men and women and giving proper respect to the other-half of the society. The most significant legislations relating to the problems faced by the Indian Hindu women passed during British period were as follows: Besides these Acts, many provincial governments also enacted some legislation.
Inthis was extended to other parts of the country. Another significant feature of the 19th century was the attempt made by social reformers to educate Indian girls. For more than 2, years, from about BCthere was practically no formal education for women. Only a few women of the upper castes and classes were given some education at home. The ideas of imparting education in a formal manner first emerged during the British period.
Christian missionaries took great interest to impart education to the girls.
Ingirls were allowed to pursue higher education. Since then, to pursue there has been a continuous progress in the field of education of girls in India. In the last decades of 19th century, a marked change took place in the outlook of both men and women about the education and employment of women as teachers, nurses, doctors, etc. Thus, the ground prepared by the 19th century social reformers and their untiring efforts led to the emancipation of women.
This also helped them to take their rightful place in society. In addition to the Essay On Medieval Women to uplift the status of women in India initiated by Essay On Medieval Women, many vigorous steps legal, social, economic and political have been taken by Government of India after independence by removing the hurdles put in their way just click for source traditional past.
The efforts of the social reformers and their movements launched in the pre-independence period also bore fruits. The Indian National Movement also led to the emancipation of Indian women. The leaders of the national movement realized that the liberation of the country from the bondage of imperialism was impossible without the active participation of women link constituted half of the population of the country.
They also got impetus from Upanishads and other Hindu scriptures. The decades after independence have seen tremendous changes in the status and position of the women in Indian society. The Constitution of India has laid down as a fundamental right click equality of sexes.
But, the change from a position of utter degradation of women to a position of equality is not a simple case of the progress of women in the modern era.