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The role of women and men had not changed much between 1500 and 1745. Tasks were still divided according to gender, just like it had been prior to the arrival of the Europeans. Missionaries in the villages of the St. Lawrence Valley wanted Iroquoian men to become more involved in farming, like the French colonists, but farming remained mostly woman’s work.

However, there had been some changes in the daily lives of women and men, either due to the fur trade, war or the introduction of European products in Native communities. For example, the fur trade and the growing number of wars forced more men to leave their village more often and for longer periods of time. As a result, they were now spending less time on other traditional activities. Since the men were often away, women sometimes had to make more decisions in the villages. They were now also spending more time preparing animal skins for trade than before.

 

Author:  Service national du Récit de l’univers social