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Did women have a Renaissance in Early Modern Europe - Essay Example

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Firstly, any study or examination of human rights and the progression of feminism denotes the fact that religion, by very definition, has traditionally negatively impacted upon the way and manner that these freedoms were experienced. …
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Did women have a Renaissance in Early Modern Europe
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Download file to see previous pages The early modern period saw many rapid changes in the way that society interacted with itself. Whereas the middle-aged should have been defined by dogmatic religious interpretation, the early modern period saw something of a relaxation of the means by which society and the laws that constrained it operated. Moreover, trade began to flourish and created the first exhibitions of what we might now term the middle class. Arts and literature came to be in greater and greater prevalence within this particular era due to the fact that the daily struggle to provide food, security, and basic human needs was simplified. Political theory and the means by which society was structured became less chaotic and more orderly. However, even though it might be tempting to state that each of these progressions somehow invariably impacted upon the plight of women, it is the assumption and understanding of this brief analysis that even though a great many societal changes were occurring during this time, the majority of these did not impact upon the rights and/or freedoms that women would otherwise experience. Instead, the benefits of this “early modern era”, as it was dumb, were almost invariably concentric upon the males within society. However, even though a low level of benefit was able to be derived by women during this period in time, the reduction in power that the church was able to exert over societal shareholders was necessarily a net in a fit with regard to the overall level of rights and privileges that women could exercise and experience within their respective societies. Naturally, this reduction in the church’s power existed to varying degrees based upon geography and/or ethnic/cultural determinants. Secondarily, as a direct result of the level of economic growth and the rise in the existence of the middle class, women of this particular class experienced a different type of lifestyle than those which had traditionally been confined to and constrained by abject poverty and/or the differential between the extraordinarily wealthy and carefree and those who struggled under varying forms of servitude to provide for the needs of themselves and for their families. Firstly, any study or examination of human rights and the progression of feminism denotes the fact that religion, by very definition, has traditionally negatively impacted upon the way and manner that these freedoms were experienced. Whether one considers the case of Islam, Christianity, Judaism, Hinduism, or any of the other world’s great religions, each of these has at its core a patriarchal respect which necessarily places women and their rights in a position of lesser importance (Andrea 275). In much the same way, medieval Europe was defined and structured along religious lines. This was so much the case that cultural differences between the French and the Italians, between the Germans and the Danes, and/or between the Swiss and the Poles were more concerned with whether or not a particular religion defined this interaction than they were with regard to the differential and cultures that necessarily existed between the two. For a large part of the dark/Middle Ages, the Roman Catholic Church had near unchallenged sway with regard to how people thought and believed in Europe. However, as a result of the challenge that Protestantism posed, the role and power of the Roman Catholic Church, and indeed the overall power that religion itself was able to project within this system were necessarily reduced. This is not say that Europe experienced anything like a miniature enlightenment during this period. Rather, the challenge of an alternate point of view led many individuals to challenge, at least on a personal level, whether or not the religion that they had so long clung to was effective in determining the mores and norms by which they would live. It is important to note at this juncture that even though Protestantism allowed for a deviation and distraction from the rigid constructs of Roman Catholicism, it was not necessarily any more friendly or ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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