Gender-Based Violence
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Gender-Based Violence


Gender and violence intersected in ancient Egypt in many ways. In general, the ancient Egyptian gender system privileged men and the masculine. Exceptions to this were status dependent. Gendered patterns of violence are evident in cases of mistreatment of women through beating and rape. War-related royal texts used gendered language to frame enemies as feminine and place them lower on the hierarchy vis-à-vis the pharaoh. Enemies were also feminized in visual representations such as temple reliefs. The symbolic violence of gendered language also served to establish indigenous gender hierarchies. Although there is evidence that some Egyptian queens and female rulers organized military operations, there is no evidence for the participation of women in war. In contrast, some goddesses had a strong affiliation with war and violence and were frequently associated with the pharaoh in this regard.

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