We often talk about a woman in a man’s world, but what does this really mean – and is it accurate? What is a man’s world? A place where women are excluded from performing certain roles or jobs? Or are shackled to others? Is it to do with the balance of power? What power? Military, political, spiritual, social, domestic – there are many forms of power. 

When we talk about a balance, are we including all of the above, or just some? It has become a stereotype that a woman’s power resides in the household. But does that translate into other forms of power? Does a woman’s power really end at the threshold of the home?

Shauna Lawless’ debut novel, The Children of Gods and Fighting Men, examines power – most particularly women’s power – in many forms. Set in tenth century Ireland, amidst belligerent Vikings and greedy kings, you would be forgiven for thinking this a man’s world. But the story is narrated by two women – two mothers – whose desire to protect their children and secure their own positions makes them far more formidable than the men around them.

Mentioned in this episode:

  • The Last Kingdom by Bernard Cornwall
  • David Gemmell
  • Conn Iggulden
  • A Game of Thrones by George R R Martin
  • You’re Dead to Me podcast

Shauna Lawless is an avid reader of Irish mythology and folklore. As an Irish woman, she loves that Irish mythology has inspired so many stories over the years, however, she wanted to explore the history and mythology of Ireland in a more authentic way.

She lives in Northern Ireland with her family. Follow Shauna on twitter @shaunaLwrites, or on her blog at www.shaunalawless.com