Suppression of womens equality sometimes took extreme

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Suppression of women’s equality sometimes took extreme forms. In medieval and Renaissance Europe, one manifestation of social stress was a sharp rise in the persecution of people thought to be witches, and due to religious and popular prejudice, a majority of those victimized by these witch hunts were women. In many parts of India, the ritual of sati , or the burning of Hindu widows on their husbands’ funeral pyres, continued. In China, the subjugation of women expressed itself most infamously in the painful practice of foot binding , which kept women’s feet tiny and dainty but in the
process crippled them. Firmly established by 1200 and popular among all classes (although especially among elites), foot binding continued into the 1900s. WOMEN AND CHANGE OVER TIME IN ASIA 600–1450 Political and religious shifts in Asia caused major change during these years in how women were treated. In India, the arrival of Islam meant that many women were no longer subject to the Hindu caste system or the sati ritual—and came to enjoy more rights than most Hindu women with respect to divorce and property. By contrast, the growing dominance of Neo-Confucianism in China led to the greater subordination of women and contributed to the growing popularity of foot binding. In Japan, the collapse of the Heian regime affected the status of upper-class women. The Heian court had placed great emphasis on cultural brilliance and elaborate manners, and Heian women exerted a certain degree of social and political influence. However, the rougher warrior ethic of the feudal shogunates allowed Japanese women fewer opportunities, and unlike European chivalry, the samurai code of Bushido did little to encourage respectful treatment of women. Organized religions played a crucial role in defining women’s roles and justifying their subservience. The majority of Christian theologians, both Catholic and Orthodox, viewed women as subordinate to men, if not inherently more sinful, and refused them positions of spiritual authority. Although Islam proclaimed the desirability of treating women with respect, it also assigned women a secondary status relative to men. Neo-Confucianism encouraged similar thinking in China and East Asia, and Hindu women were highly restricted by the dictates of the caste system.
A Humans and the Environment, 600–1450 MIGRATIONS (VIKING, MONGOL-TURKIC, BANTU, POLYNESIAN) SPREAD OF BANANAS, COTTON, SUGAR, AND CITRUS RICE CULTIVATION (CHAMPA RICE) INTENSIVE FORMS OF AGRICULTURE (INCLUDING CHINAMPA AND WARU WARU) IMPROVEMENT OF THE HORSE COLLAR THE BLACK DEATH MEDIEVAL CLIMATIC OPTIMUM VS. LITTLE ICE AGE s before, human societies simultaneously adapted to their environment and sought to adapt it to their own needs and desires. Their environmental impact dramatically increased—sometimes reaching harmful, even self-destructive, levels—thanks to steady population growth , a growing talent for engineering and construction, and a greater willingness and ability to harvest and deplete resources. On the other hand, environmental factors beyond human control, particularly changes in the

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