Daily Life of Women
An Encyclopedia from Ancient Times to the Present
by Colleen Boyett, H. Micheal Tarver, and Mildred Diane Gleason, Editors
December 2020, 1252pp, 8 1/2x11
3 volumes, Greenwood

Hardcover: 978-1-4408-4692-2
$352, £271, 307€, A483
eBook Available: 978-1-4408-4693-9
Please contact your preferred eBook vendor for pricing.

Women of all social classes historically have not been taught to read and thus have not left much textual documentation in their own voice for modern historians to dissect.

Indispensable for the student or researcher studying women’s history, this book draws upon a wide array of cultural settings and time periods in which women displayed agency by carrying out their daily economic, familial, artistic, and religious obligations.

Since record keeping began, history has been written by a relatively few elite men. Insights into women’s history are left to be gleaned by scholars who undertake careful readings of ancient literature, examine archaeological artifacts, and study popular culture, such as folktales, musical traditions, and art. For some historical periods and geographic regions, this is the only way to develop some sense of what daily life might have been like for women in a particular time and place.

This reference explores the daily life of women across civilizations. The work is organized in sections on different civilizations from around the world, arranged chronologically. Within each society, the encyclopedia highlights the roles of women within five broad thematic categories: the arts, economics and work, family and community life, recreation and social customs, and religious life. Included are numerous sidebars containing additional information, document excerpts, images, and suggestions for further reading.


  • An introduction provides an overview the daily life of women through history, and a timeline highlights key events in women's history
  • Chronologically arranged sections on civilizations from across world history provide information on the daily life of women living in those societies
  • For each civilization, broad categories of daily life are broken into subsections, with each offering reference entries on specific topics
  • Photos help users visualize important topics, and sidebars provide interesting tangential information
  • Bibliographies direct readers to additional resources
Colleen Boyett, PhD, is an independent scholar of the history of the Middle East and associate principal of Korea International School, Jeju Island, South Korea.

H. Micheal Tarver, PhD, is professor of history at Arkansas Tech University, Russellville, AR. He is editor of The Spanish Empire: A Historical Encyclopedia, era editor of World History Encyclopedia, Era 8: Crisis and Achievement, 1900–1945, and author of The History of Venezuela, Second Edition, among other works.

Mildred Diane Gleason, PhD, is founder and primary researcher at Gleason Historical Studies, Dardanelle, AR. She is author of the award-winning book, Dardanelle and the Bottoms: Environment, Agriculture, and Economy in an Arkansas River Community, 1819–1970 and its companion work, A Pictorial History: Dardanelle and the Bottoms, 1880s–1980s.


2021 Dartmouth Medal Honorable Mention—RUSA, February 4, 2021


"Recommended. Lower-division undergraduates through faculty."—Choice, December 1, 2021
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