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Hidden Voices: Unveiling Women in Ancient Egypt / Kasia, Szpakowska

A Companion to Women in the Ancient World, Pages: 25 - 38

Swansea University Author: Kasia, Szpakowska

Abstract

The problems encountered when attempting to reconstruct life in Ancient Egypt in a way that includes all members of society rather than focussing on the most prominent or obvious actors are in many respects the same as for other cultures. The loudest voices tend to be heard, while those in the backg...

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Published in: A Companion to Women in the Ancient World
Published: Oxford Wiley-Blackwell 2012
URI: https://cronfa.swan.ac.uk/Record/cronfa11760
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Abstract: The problems encountered when attempting to reconstruct life in Ancient Egypt in a way that includes all members of society rather than focussing on the most prominent or obvious actors are in many respects the same as for other cultures. The loudest voices tend to be heard, while those in the background are muted and stilled. This article stresses the fact that there is no monolithic category of “women”. Temporal and geographical contexts are borne in mind, as well as the status, ethnicity, class, wealth, and age of the individuals under study. Whether studying the life of a queen or a young girl, the interpretations are based on the surviving data that has survived the millennia. It is this evidence, specifically from Ancient Egypt prior to the Ptolemaic period, and methods of approaching it, that is the focus of this paper. The aim is to call attention to some of the specific complications that can be encountered, as well as to highlight some of the recent innovative approaches now underway in current studies on women in Ancient Egypt. Some of the issues that are highlighted include the use of non-literary texts, representational evidence, and three-dimensional finds (with the spotlight on problematic figurines and human remains) and architectural features.
Keywords: women, gender, religion, domestic, priests, archaeology, Egyptology
College: College of Arts and Humanities
Start Page: 25
End Page: 38