Sunday, April 1, 2012

A is for Aridáni

The term Aridáni is used in Tsolyánu to describe independent women (it literally means "independent" in Tsolyáni); it is a status that any free woman can claim, and doing so sets them apart from the "good clan-girls" that represent most of the female population. By making the declaration before witnesses the woman gains all the rights and obligations of a Tsolyáni male in society - she becomes “a person in the eyes of the law.”

Only about 10-15% of Tsolyáni women make this choice, the majority preferring the security of the life of the "good clan-girl". As a clan-girl women are protected by their clans, receive an education, housing, clothing and food, but at the same time giving up many freedoms such as the choice of whom to marry - as this will be arranged by the clan elders.

As an Aridáni, a women has more control over her destiny, but also shares the risks. She can participate in business, join the temples or the military - anything her male counterparts do. And , as with them, her clan will support her in many instances but ultimately she is responsible for her own debts and actions. A clan will only support someone so far - if they become a liability a clan may be forced to cut it's losses.


  1. To have such status a woman would be quite an honor. Aradani--good title.

  2. Hey, I'm visiting from the A to Z challenge. Always good to find another gaming blog!

  3. Great to find another gamer around, I'm also visiting from the A to Z challenge.

    Love the details about the Aradani!

  4. This is one of the details I like about Tekumel. It successfully reconciles the familiarity of a patriarchal fantasy society with the potential for an adventuring female character.

    I think Prof. Barker based this on the Babylonian institution of Naditu, 'fallow women' who were allowed much greater liberties and had active roles in trade and business, but under some limitations. They're not permitted to have children, among other things, probably to keep inheritances within the male lines alone.

    In Hari Ragat, the equivalent of Aridani would be the Kinalakian, women warriors who take an oath never to marry save the man who defeats them in battle.