Women's Work

Women's Work The First 20,000 Years : Women, Cloth, and Society in Early Times

Paperback (17 Jan 1996)

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New discoveries about the textile arts reveal women's unexpectedly influential role in ancient societies.

Twenty thousand years ago, women were making and wearing the first clothing created from spun fibers. In fact, right up to the Industrial Revolution the fiber arts were an enormous economic force, belonging primarily to women.

Despite the great toil required in making cloth and clothing, most books on ancient history and economics have no information on them. Much of this gap results from the extreme perishability of what women produced, but it seems clear that until now descriptions of prehistoric and early historic cultures have omitted virtually half the picture.

Elizabeth Wayland Barber has drawn from data gathered by the most sophisticated new archaeological methods-methods she herself helped to fashion. In a "brilliantly original book" (Katha Pollitt, Washington Post Book World), she argues that women were a powerful economic force in the ancient world, with their own industry: fabric.

Book information

ISBN: 9780393313482
Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
Imprint: W.W. Norton and Company
Pub date:
DEWEY: 305.4367709
DEWEY edition: 21
Language: English
Number of pages: 334
Weight: 270g
Height: 139mm
Width: 201mm
Spine width: 22mm