From Art Critique:
A new discovery of an ancient burial site shows just how much we still don’t know about ancient societies. A 9,000-year-old burial site in southern Peru potentially shows that what we’ve longed believed about gender roles in hunter-gatherer societies might be a bit off.
Anthropology professor Randall Haas and a team of experts have published a report that “challenge[s] the man-the-hunter hypothesis” concerning the division of work amongst males and females in ancient times. Published in Science Advances, the study titled “Female hunters of the early Americas” builds upon the discovery of remains and more than 20,000 artefacts in the Andean highlands at a 9,000-year-old burial site called Wilamaya Patjxa.
The study points out that in recent hunter-gatherer societies, big-game hunting has been “overwhelmingly male-biased.” But, Haas and his team have shown evidence from Wilamaya Patjxa that this may not have always been the case amongst ancient societies that would have required all-hands-on-deck to procure big-game. In addition to communal hunting, Wilamaya Patjxa findings suggests that child rearing would have been a shared task, freeing up more men, women, and children to partake in hunts.
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