Essay - Women Wolf, Margery. 'Uterine Families and the Women's Community.' Chapter...

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Wolf, Margery. "Uterine Families and the Women's Community." Chapter 23 Questions


According to Wolf, a uterine society is a society characterized by a patriarchal system of linage, whereby authority is passed down from father to son. Women are subsumed within the identity of a family upon marriage, and ***** primarily valued for their childbearing function, specifically their ability to bear *****s. Women ex*****t as placeholders in such a world, of cont*****ued male identity, rather than ***** legitimate beings themselves of value because they pose no practical, long-lasting value to their parental families, only to families they marry in***** as the *****ers of sons.


Thus, producing children is extremely important to women in ***** societies. In such a system ***** lineage, the only status and identity is conferred ***** the females in question by ***** is ***** terms of their abilities to produce sons in the village schema of *****s. Moreover, all ***** lose ***** previous, albeit lower and tangential ***** as a member of a kinship structure *****s a daughter when they marry. Their marital *****iance thus forms their only social status—there is no safety network for them ***** fall back on, if they fail in the uterine society's requirements to produce *****, and have little sense of self-worth, as the family has no incentive to connect with daughters emotionally, or to put much financial eff*****t into ***** physical worth, o*****r than to pass them on as a wife and a bearer of sons ***** another family.

Question 3 woman's relationship is entirely dependant in her new family, on her ability to produce sons, given that ***** are no m*****e valued ***** this ***** family than they were in her old familial structure. Even her mot***** in law, the new, main female figure in her life, makes such demands upon *****. A woman who ***** yet to make a son is the lowest of the low, far beneath her mo*****r-in-law. Once she ********** a male heir, she increases her status in the family, in ***** husband's eyes, and as the mother of the *****'s child, ***** reducing the status of the mo*****r in law and her power over the girl ***** well. Before, her own mo*****r only spoke of the future without her, ***** her brot*****'s terms, ***** only ***** married does she ***** a *****—but with a past door ***** her childhood "slamming shut."(243)


********** creates a fr*****gmented househ*****, pitting woman against *****, all eyes turned ***** the husband for authority. And before, in a house with daughters, ***** "matter how fond of his daughter the father may be" she is a temporary member of h***** household, ***** no ties to him, and she will not protect him in his ***** old age." (242) Sons and ********** are bifurcated in their *****, as are daughters and fathers, but even girls are alienated from their mothers, as they possess less ***** worth than their brothers ***** the existing kinship *****.


***** ***** apt to continue


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