In the early contact period of Europeans and Aboriginals, Aboriginal culture consisted of very different beliefs that tradition religious European culture. Aboriginals had an egalitarian outlook on gender that allowed freedom and equality between males and females. In some aboriginal cultures, another two-spirit gender identity was accepted as well. European culture did not have egalitarian gender roles and women were in the shadows of their husband. Their beliefs on gender roles were very influenced by religion (Christianity) and it held many restrictions for women regarding sexuality and their societal status.
A lot of the European social norms about gender and the inferiority of women still exist in society today. There may have been improvements in “the West” but there are many places in the world where women and seen and treated and the weaker/inferior sex. Also, worldwide there are still many social stigmas about what women can/cannot do.
I knew about the egalitarian ways of Aboriginal cultures based on previous reading and research I have done but I was not aware of the extent of true egalitarianism and acceptance that was a part of Aboriginal cultures. In this cultural, sexuality and premarital sex was accepted, as well as acceptance towards different gender expressions and same-sex relations. From this, we can learn and acknowledge that before European influence and colonization, there were many other functioning societies that maintained a very a very egalitarian culture towards all genders.