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Book Review: Women in the Ancient World (Book Review Sample)

The task was about writing a book review of the book Women in the Ancient World. This sample gives a summary of the book and its chapters source..
Name Instructor Course Date Book Review: Women in the Ancient World Neil’s, Jennifer. Women in the Ancient World. London: British Press Museum, 2011. Print. Introduction Neil’s book covers the roles and daily lives of women as faithful wives, powerful queens, high-living prostitutes, and untouchable priestess in the ancient Rome, Egypt, Greece, and the Near East. The author affirms that their roles were varied and fascinating and often went beyond the usual or traditional perception of women’s place in the society. She is a classical archaeologist, historian, and museum curator with a keen interest in life in the ancient world. The scholar takes a thought-provoking approach to reveal women in the ancient period. Her works contributes to the current understanding of their lives and roles. She includes historical images and photographs that contain details about the place and role of females in the antique. She captures the essential information in seven chapters and thereby makes it possible for the reader to understand the material. It is packed with many quotations drawn from contemporary sources, which reveal information about antique women with surprising resonance to today’s society. The lively book cover various themes where it juxtaposes the image of real women against stereotypes, mothers and mourners, royal personalities, and working women, described in connection with the associated practices of religion and physical modification. Chapter Summaries In chapter one, the author examines real women by using a toiletry box of a deceased Roman Woman, "Projecta." She shows the usefulness and the shortcomings of visual material culture to the nature of how women were represented in the ancient world. Using the device, the author argues that women played roles of household mistress, wife, mother, and sex goddess (13). She reiterates that it is only by studying the physical remains of the antique women that one can get a glimpse of the realities of women during their time. The author indicates that the sex goddess, represented by a nude female is the oldest role of women. However, Neil acknowledges the incompleteness of her work when she notes that the material that has survived was for the wealthy in the society. Therefore, she emphasizes that her work aims to illuminate the social roles and stereotypes that were associated with antique women. Thus, she is frank to indicate that her book does not provide a comprehensive account of women in the ancient world (6). In the second chapter, Neil explores women stereotypes illustrating the various misconception and perception that have been associated with the ladies since the ancient period. The views pertain to the categories of female fatale, the man-slayer, the martyr, the witch, and earth mothers. The author indicates that the stereotypes reveal the fears and hopes of men more than the women themselves. Many of the female stereotypes are described in mythological or religious texts whose narratives were displayed by the artworks. The author does not discuss the value of men homoerotic relationship, which was central to understanding Greek. Although the book does focus on the role and place of men in the ancient society, the failure to include how women related to them give a distorted view of sexuality and gender. In the third chapter, the author explores the role of women as mothers and mourners. Neil addresses the imagery of the old reproductive economy, the cultural association of women, as well as the emotional display. The exploration hin...
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