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Monday, September 22, 2014

When the Drummers Were Women - Layne Redmond

Music is well-known to move people and it has been used in matters of religion and worship as far back as is recorded. The oldest known instruments are rhythm instruments, like drums. Redmond notes that many of the goddess statues found around the world are seen holding a disc and suggests that these may have actually been drums. Redmond takes the reader on a journey to following civilization from Sumeria and up into Europe to explore the uses of drums and the sacred place that women once held within religion and society throughout time.

With the title I thought I would be reading more information on how drumming or even at least music related to women throughout cultures and religions; instead, she spends the majority of the book simply talking about religion and how it related to women.

I also had qualms with a particular piece of information Redmond decided to repeat with the bull symbolizing the female reproductive system because they look the same. This is unlikely seeing as ancient cultures did not have the tools to do autopsies to discover that information. It seems more likely that the bull may have simply been a horned cow.

I was originally excited to read this book, thinking I would learn more about music and how it related to women throughout time; instead, I read undetailed and familiar information that I've read in any number of books. Despite it's 200 pages, it was a quick read due to writing style. If you're familiar with religion and women as a topic, this won't present you with any new information. If you are just starting out, however, this is an accessible book.

Recommended Reads:
Goddesses and the Divine Feminine: A Western Religious History - Rosemary Ruether
Priestess, Mother, Sacred Sister - Susan Starr Sered

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