Gender Roles in Economics

Men do all the work that requires appearing in public. They do the plowing, sowing, harvesting, and other farm work, as well as any herding of animals; men build houses and walls, mill grain, set bones, slaughter animals, and cut hair; local carpenters make elaborate carved chairs, now much coveted by Western collectors. Men also do the buying and selling in the market, and only men should hold paying jobs. Men are responsible for blood debt and revenge, undertake warfare, and migrate in search of work.

Ideally, women are responsible for all domestic chores: childcare, cooking, and so on. This division of labor is so strict that a single man is ashamed to make rice for himself, and asks his sister or mother to prepare it for him. Women are also responsible for building ovens to bake their bread; another valued female skill is the intricate embroidery of pillowcases, dresses, and quilt covers that are often given as marriage gifts.

As mentioned, men inherit all land and property. When a man dies without sons, his brothers—not his wife or daughters—inherit from him. In principle, a woman does have absolute rights to the jewelry and the monetary value of the land given to her at marriage by her husband's family (mahar), but this is only claimed in case of divorce, which is rare.

Pregnancy And Childbirth

Pregnancy And Childbirth

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