Women hunted, back in the hunter-gatherer days.

PhysOrg has a study that defies the conventional idea of “man the hunter, woman the gatherer” with evidence that, in more than three-quarters of contemporary hunter-gatherer societies, women hunt alongside men:

[Abigail Anderson of Seattle Pacific University, US, and colleagues] analyzed data from the past 100 years on 63 foraging societies around the world, including societies in North and South America, Africa, Australia, Asia, and the Oceanic region.

They found that women hunt in 79% of the analyzed societies, regardless of their status as mothers. More than 70% of female hunting appears to be intentional—as opposed to opportunistic killing of animals encountered while performing other activities, and intentional hunting by women appears to target game of all sizes, most often large game.

The analysis also revealed that women are actively involved in teaching hunting practices and that they often employ a greater variety of weapon choice and hunting strategies than men.

You can read more of Anderson et al’s research here, in PLOS One.