Engendering Historical Archaeology
To say that gendered social relations are complex would be to profoundly understate the dynamism of the human experience (Rotman 2009). The ways in which individuals understand their roles as gendered beings and their relationships to other gendered beings is constantly pushed and pulled by forces both internal and external to the individual and the family/social/economic unit to which they belong at multiple scales from the household to the community to the nation. Identity, sexuality, cultural prescriptions for social roles, socioeconomic class, ethnic heritage, life cycle, and other dimensions of the cultural world create tensions between societal structures, gender ideals, and individual choices that require continual negotiation, interpretation, and implementation.
Although challenging for scholars who seek to understand these social relations, these complexities are precisely why gender is an endlessly fascinating subject for study. Through time and across space, the...
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