“If you educate a woman, you educate a family. If you educate a girl, you educate the future.” – Queen Rania of Jordan.
Women Invented Writing
Imagine that. Ancient school-age girls 5100 years ago became inventors of our writing, large-scale commerce, large-scale production and civilization as we now know it.
What if they were held back, as females are held back from learning and innovating in today’s “modern” age? We would all still be living in caves and sitting on rocks, because after 200,000 years of modern humans, only in the last 5100 years have we had writing. And it took females to give it to us.
If school-age girls did all that 5100 years ago, how much better, prosperous and advanced will our own future be by educating girls worldwide, inspiring them to continue innovating and helping them to succeed? Let’s find out!
Help us to inspire girls around the world and motivate them, by sharing with schools and classrooms of today’s school-age girls the truth about their female heritage. Females are educators! Females are innovators!
Our mission is to provide schools worldwide with a print copy of the 3-book series by Legesse Allyn that details how women created civilization 5100 years ago. The special book series was written at the suggestion and guidance of an editor at one of the largest middle school textbook publisher/distributors in America.
Through your generous donations, we can provide a print set to school classrooms worldwide, to ensure school girls, as well as boys, understand that when we educate girls, we educate the future. After all, if women had not invented writing 5100 years ago, we would no books, schools or libraries today.
Motivating Girls To Attend School and Learn Through Female-Centered Educational Materials
According to a study by a team at the World Bank with support from the Children’s Investment Fund Foundation, the Global Partnership for Education, and the Malala Fund, 131 million girls remain out of school worldwide. Part of this reason is due to pressures of social norms and cultural practices of the various societies. 
But keeping girls in school and ensuring they can learn in a safe and supportive environment leads to many benefits for girls themselves, their families, their communities and societies. And as with women’s invention of writing, for the world.
A new study shows girls are more likely to be excited to attend school when feeling they belong in school and able to learn, even under conditions of extreme poverty and deprivation.
The results of a new study, discussed in an Association for Psychological Science article, shows how fostering motivation could help keep marginalized girls in school. “Education — and girls’ education in particular — is often cited as one of the key pathways out of poverty,” the article states, “but in many parts of the world women and girls still face significant barriers that prevent them from attending school.” 
The results of the study, conducted in the African country of Malawi, according to the article, reveals psychological factors played an important role in whether girls attended school, even under conditions of extreme poverty and deprivation. “Girls were significantly more likely to attend class when they were intrinsically excited about school and learning, even when they struggled with a lack of basic resources at home,” according to the article.
“We are prone to think that giving girls a reward for going to school will increase their motivation. Instead, our results indicate that stimulating their intrinsic joy of learning is a stronger predictor of their actual school going behavior, even under conditions of severe poverty,” researcher Marieke van Egmond of the University of Hagen in Germany, lead author on the study, is quoted as saying in the article.
“In general, girls really want to go to school, enjoy learning, and go to great lengths to do so. In psychological terms, they are intrinsically motivated,” van Egmond explained. “Poverty and social dynamics, however, work against them. Cultural beliefs and attitudes reinforce the idea that girls won’t use their education or that they are not smart enough to continue with school. In other words, they don’t feel like they belong in school, they don’t feel competent and lack power.”
Going to school because it is expected did not predict school attendance. Instead, according to the article, “School attendance was significantly higher among girls who were intrinsically motivated to attend school – those who said they enjoyed school and learning for its own sake – regardless of the level of resource scarcity that the girls were exposed to.”
“The take home message is that development projects that aim to increase the school attendance of girls in impoverished settings need to not only aim for female empowerment, but for creating environments in which girls feel that they belong and feel able to learn as well,” van Egmond says. “This will stimulate the girls’ intrinsic motivation to go to school, which is a strong predictor of their actual attendance.”
Schools did not exist prior to women inventing writing. What a better way to help school girls feel they belong in school than for girls to know and understand that it was females who invented schools and learning as we know it today? If school girls know and understand they invented writing and school learning, it will help them also know and understand they are able to learn, since it was females who invented school learning, writing, reading and therefore literacy.
Women Invented Literacy: What If Writing Had Not Been Invented?
Think about it for a minute. Where would we be today if women had not invented writing in ancient days? The fact is, there would be no literacy. Literacy is the ability to read and write. Even to type the words on this page and for you to be able to read them. 
When women in ancient Egypt 5100 years ago invented writing, the entire world changed. Not just writing, but writing as we know it today. These very letters you are reading were originally hieroglyphs invented by women. But as societies began to adopt the women’s writing system, the characters became less and less recognizable as women’s original ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs.
Not only are ancient Latin characters the result of the adoption of women’s ancient Egyptian hieroglyphic characters, but also ancient Greek, ancient Aramaic, ancient Hebrew, Cuneiform and other writing characters of the ancient world. When women invented writing, the entire world wanted their own version of it.
Women’s writing was the beginning of today’s technology. Without it, there would be no Microsoft, or Google or Facebook. There would be no computers. And your smartphone? No, your smartphone wouldn’t exist, either. The only calling we would be doing is calling one another across a canyon. And texting would still be the beating on a drum.
Why Did Women Invent Writing?
In a November 2017 Science Magazine article, it is reported that women living 7000 years ago shouldered a major share of the hoeing, digging, and hauling in early agricultural societies, according to a new study. 
“The findings refute popularly held notions that early agrarian women shunned manual labor in favor of domestic work,” the article states, “analyzing the bones of these women, scientists have shown that their upper body strength surpassed even today’s elite female athletes.”
Hila May, an anthropologist at Tel Aviv University in Israel who studies evolutionary anatomy, says in the Science Magazine article, “People haven’t typically focused on females in this society, [but] it’s very important for understanding…”
Alison Macintosh, an anthropologist at the University of Cambridge in the United Kingdom, thought there might be more to the story. “We felt it was likely a huge oversimplification to say [prehistoric women] were simply not doing that much, or not doing as much as the men, or were largely sedentary,” she says.
“That means that in these early agricultural societies, women likely specialized in various kinds of heavy manual labor,” says Macintosh, “whereas men split their time between farming and more lower body–intensive tasks like running and hunting.” Therefore, women were primarily farming to provide food to the family and men were hunting.
According to Legesse Allyn, whose books are available in major university libraries around the world (including USC, Princeton, Cornell, Oxford in the UK, AAU in Ethiopia, and Universidad de Deusto in Spain), women were not only responsible for farming, but also markets. Women took excess produce to ancient farmer’s markets to sell and, at the end of the day before returning home, they traded with other women merchants for the items they needed for their homes and families.
How Did Women’s Farming Lead To the Technology of Writing?
As women’s farming began producing more and more, the markets began getting larger and larger. In ancient Egypt this led to the first ancient Egyptian city, Megbi city (pronounced Nekheb by Egyptologists), the City of Food. El Kab is the modern name of ancient Megbi city. 
Megbi city’s founder was named Megabit (Nekhebet), a feminized form of the word megbi, which means “food.” Alternately as a vulture carrying a load of food, Megabit’s image appears throughout ancient Egyptian history. 
The increased size of the women’s markets led to the need for increased produce and goods. The scene above shows the walls of Megbi city.  Part of this supply of goods came from women in the Yafo, Dead Sea region of ancient Egypt, according to Legesse Allyn. The Yafo, Tel Aviv harbor (formerly Palestine, today Israel) is the site where a Bronze-age ancient Egyptian fortress is being excavated. The lead archaeologist is UCLA Professor Aaron Burke and the image above shows the gate of the fortress, behind it the walls of the ruins.
In a PDF available online, Professor Burke discusses the importance of the ancient Dead Sea region 3400 years ago, which was part of ancient Egypt and whose people were also Egyptians. Professor Burke points out the importance of the “pharaonic granaries,” ancient grain storage facilities.  But the supply of produce and goods from the Egyptian Dead Sea region to the women’s markets of the Egyptian Nile Valley/Delta region existed far earlier than 3400 years ago.
In a Discovery Channel, Science Channel show, Egypt Unexplained Files – Scorpion King, it was revealed that the supply from the Egyptian Yafo/Dead Sea region was early as the 5200 years ago. “In 2009, scientists re-examined artifacts from the Scorpion king’s tomb,” Josh Goodman the episode’s narrator says, after which co-host and Egyptologist Paul Harris states, “In Abydos, archaeologists find seals depicting the Scorpion king. But they also find remnants of thousands of bottles of wine.”
“Using mass spectrometry,” Josh Goodman continues, “they determine an isotopic signature from the wine residue. Incredibly, it’s from Palestine, over 400 miles away. Paul Harris continued, “In order to import something from Palestine, you had to have a strong trade route. You had to be able to protect that trade route. The fact that they found hundreds of jars of wine in King Scorpion’s tomb indicates that he had enough power to control the entire area between him and Palestine.” 
The Yafo harbor provided the shipping port from which to ship the produce and goods to the women’s markets in ancient Egypt’s Africa Nile Valley/Delta. And if the name of the Dead Sea causes you to think nothing grows there, think again. The world’s oldest granary has been reported by Ian Kuijt, in a Science Daily article, to have been located on the southeast edge of the Dead Sea in today’s Jordan.  Reportedly, the grain storage facility is dated to be 10,000 years old. On the right we can see a wooden model of an ancient Egyptian granary and workers, which was located in the tomb of Meketre. 
All this increased production and selling in the markets and on the farms required a new tool — writing. The hieroglyphic word for “writing,” matet, means “to report.” And this new reporting tool by women provided a powerful way to efficiently manage their markets and farming activity, for recording and reporting the activity, sales, and production women needed to manage it all.
According to Legesse Allyn, for each hieroglyphic character, women simply drew an object and associated with it a pronunciation from the word for each object. In this way, the M pronunciation in the word may, which means “water,” became the hieroglyph for writing out the M and N pronunciation sounds. Likewise, the calf of the leg, the word bat, was drawn out as the calf and leg, able to be utilized to write out the B pronunciation sound, as well as the linguistically related W and F pronunciation sounds.
All hieroglyphs have linguistic relationships to other related pronunciation sounds, in the women’s complex writing system. So, not only did women invent writing and therefore literacy, in their teaching of it, but women were also the first linguists.
Why would we keep such valuable information from school girls, about their own ancient female heritage and their own innovated technology? Now you can help us do something about it.
Women’s Writing is Technology and Programming/Coding Is Women’s Writing
Not only is writing technology, but computer technology is female. Female invented it. So girls in reality should know they are able to excel in today’s modern technology. It is all based on what they invented 5100 years ago.
Yet, women are shut out of technology, as if they are not capable, and this extends to school girls. Many cultures deem it either unnecessary for girls to learn and women unable to excel in technology, both of which impact the motivation for girls to attend school, feel they belong and able to learn.
Women’s writing is technology and all products and services today involve some kind of computer technology between design, production, and sales. And none of it is possible if women would not have invented writing. Both computer programming and coding are female, since they are both forms of writing.
When it comes to computer programming, girls will not only be surprised and excited to know women invented writing, but a woman is credited with the first computer program.
Generally dated to 1843, according to the Computer Programming Wikipedia article, “the first computer program is generally dated to 1843, when mathematician Ada Lovelace published an algorithm to calculate a sequence of Bernoulli numbers, intended to be carried out by Charles Babbage’s Analytical Engine.” 
Girls belong and girls are able. Their ancient heritage proves it. They have a right to enjoy learning and schooling, since they invented it.
Women Invented Writing: Girls Have a Right to the Education They Invented.
The Urban Literacy Project is a California 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, so your donation is tax-deductible. Let’s spread the good news to girls around the world and help them learn and succeed.
Not only is the book series information exciting for school children to read and learn from, but the book series helps make learning about ancient culture fun — for both school girls and school boys of all ages. This is the only middle school book series that tells girls and boys the truth about women’s multi-faceted, crucial roles in ancient society, with lots of fun exercises to with which to learn all the details about women’s hieroglyphic writing.
See and read for yourself. We’re giving you the following digital copies that you can read online or download, as a gift to you for donating today…
There are more than enough textbooks in schools about men in society and ancient history to help boys feel they can accomplish anything. We bridge the gap and provide girls with historical ancient information about women to feel proud about and help them feel they can also do anything and belong in school, too.
Help girls look to the past to capture their futures. Help us donate the book series to classrooms around the world today. Donate now.
1. Missed opportunities: The high cost of not educating girls – https://www.globalpartnership.org/content/missed-opportunities-high-cost-not-educating-girls
2. Fostering Motivation Could Help Keep Marginalized Girls in School – https://www.psychologicalscience.org/news/releases/fostering-motivation-could-help-keep-marginalized-girls-in-school.html
3. “The Ethiopian Culture of Ancient Egypt,” volume I – https://www.amazon.com/Ethiopian-Culture-Ancient-Egypt-Introduction/dp/1519499205
4. Science Magazine, “Strong Women Did a Lot of the Heavy Lifting in Ancient Farming Societies” – https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/11/strong-women-did-lot-heavy-lifting-ancient-farming-societies
5. “The Ethiopian Culture of Ancient Egypt,” volume III – https://www.amazon.com/Ethiopian-Culture-Ancient-Egypt-Hieroglyphic/dp/151973252X
6. Photo Credit: Megabit relief carving photo by John Campana
7. Photo Credit: View from the walls of Megbi city from the Nile River photo by Harald Gaertner
8. Egyptians in Jaffa: A Portrait of Egyptian Presence in Jaffa during the Late Bronze Age – http://jchp.ucla.edu/Bibliography/Burke_and_Lords_2010_(NEA_73,1).pdf
9. Egypt Unexplained Files – Scorpion King- https://www.yidio.com/show/egypts-unexplained-files/season-1/episode-3/links.html
10. World’s Oldest Known Granaries Predate Agriculture – https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/06/090623150619.htm
11. Photo credit: Wooden model of an ancient Egyptian granary and workers – Keith Schengili-Roberts
12. Computer Programming Wikipedia article – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_programming
Other Photo Credit:
* New Kingdom, 18th dynasty woman with hand raised – Keith Schengili-Roberts
* Ethiopian school girls – Adam Jones, Kelowna, BC, Canada
* Jordanian school girls – David Stanley, Nanaimo, Canada
* Japanese school girls – Carlos ZGZ
* Ancient Egyptian woman and hieroglyphs – The Yorck Project () 10.000 Meisterwerke der Malerei (DVD-ROM), distributed by DIRECTMEDIA Publishing GmbH. ISBN: 3936122202
* Ancient Egyptian woman with basket – Rogers Fund and Edward S. Harkness Gift, 1920
* Ada Lovelace – Painting by Alfred Edward Chalon (1780–1860), photo 1840 by Science & Society Picture Library