Is the history of the world in urgent need of correction? Some historians, mostly women, argue that insufficient attention has been paid to a very important group: women. These historians want history textbooks to be revised so that they show accurately the role played by women.

According to the history books, cavemen provided most of the food for their families through hunting animals. But the evidence shows that 80% of the diet of prehistoric humans was vegetarian and it was collected by females. In addition, women's efforts in fighting in wars or leading revolutions have been ignored. Textbooks concentrate on men such as Hannibal or Che Guevara and neglect outstanding women such as Théroigne de Méricourt, an opera singer who led the storming of the Bastille in 1789, or Mariya Bochkareva, a Bolshevik who organised a well-trained and highly successful troop of 2,000 fighting women during the Russian revolution in 1917. Women rulers are also forgotten. Between 962 and 1582 there were at least 16 women rulers in countries ranging from Italy to Angola.

Women make up half the human race. If there is no reference to their contribution to history in the textbooks, then the real story is not being told. However many male historians deny that important female figures have been kept out of the history books.


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