Oksana Ovsiyuk

Women’s Domain in the Patriarchal Countryside

December 10, 2021

Ukrainian traditional society was patriarchal until the end of the 19th — beginning of the 20th century; this meant that men were considered the head of the household and played a leading role in the life of the community. Men had a higher status because in agrarian societies — predating automatic production — they performed physically difficult, socially important, and often specialised (craft) work. Women were socially positioned to primarily assist men. They were held responsible for tasks that were considered lighter than men’s such as household chores and child care. In traditional society, family and the home were meant to provide  fulfillment. The ‘correct’ path for a woman's life was considered to follow the roles of wife, mother, and housewife. Girls were prepared for this from an early age by participating in what was considered women's work, in particular, care for younger children and some house work.