Given the male-centered world of the culture, how do female characters such as Sogolon and Sassouma Bérété demonstrate their power and seem to represent the culture’s view of female characteristics? How does the portrayal of these women compare with ways women are portrayed in other cultures or in our culture today? Provide some examples of the traits of Sogolon or other women in Sundiata and discuss the epic’s treatment of gender

  

The role of women: Given the male-centered world of the culture, how do female characters such as Sogolon and Sassouma Bérété demonstrate their power and seem to represent the culture’s view of female characteristics? How does the portrayal of these women compare with ways women are portrayed in other cultures or in our culture today? Provide some examples of the traits of Sogolon or other women in Sundiata and discuss the epic’s treatment of gender.Select a relevant passage of your own choosing from Sundiata. Choose carefully, thinking about how your passage might speak to overarching themes and the bolded text in the Purpose, above.How does your passage illustrate a conclusion about roles of women in Sundiata, and how is that significant or important for understanding women in this culture or more generally?

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The Role of Women
Sundiata’s epic shows how women are born and grow in male-dominated communities. For instance, women’s rights were always violated, and society demanded they be submissive. The women were perceived as less superior in some instances, but they got an opportunity to demonstrate their strengths. The women have to stand out even if it costs them paraffin and water to claim glory against the women. They do everything to maintain their position as preferred wives in society. Some of them possess high skills and knowledge. For instance, Sogolon ensures that she is a good mother to her son by informing him of the dangers he is facing. The way women are treated in Sundiata is similar to our culture, where women have defied so many odds to be where they are(Tsaaior 1-2). For the longest time in society, patriarchal values oppressed women, but many have overcome the hurdles by showing their strengths at every opportunity they get.
The passage that shows the role of women in society is found on page 18 of the book in the chapter “The Lion’s Awakening”(Niane 18). It talks about how Sassouma realized that Sogolon preferred to increase the danger through male domination. At the time, the women’s position was only doing the house chores and limited to the participation in other activities in the society. Such treatment of the women shows that society despised them. It shows that when the women are put under oppression, they suffer, and no one can save them. At the same time, it is through the male domination that the women suffered. Therefore, society valued men more than women, which contributed to their low status.

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Given the male-centered world of the culture, how do female characters such as Sogolon and Sassouma Bérété demonstrate their power and seem to represent the culture’s view of female characteristics? How does the portrayal of these women compare with ways women are portrayed in other cultures or in our culture today? Provide some examples of the traits of Sogolon or other women in Sundiata and discuss the epic’s treatment of gender
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Works Cited
Niane, D. T. Sundiata: An epic of old Mali. Longman Publishing Group, 2006.
Pyell-Campbell, Jennifer. “The Authenticity of the Epic of Sundiata: Stopping the Single Story.” (2021). https://digscholarship.unco.edu/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1038&context=ug_pres_2021

Tsaaior, James T. “The Sundiata Epic and the Global Literary Imaginary.” A Companion to World Literature, 2019, pp. 1-11.

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