Human roles differ across cultures as evidenced through their literature. Each civilization had their own beliefs about god, the world, and families. While comparing ancient Chinese and Greek civilizations it was shown that there were many similarities as well as several differences. Evaluating ancient Chinese and ancient Greek mythology shows that both cultures share similar views of the roles of women and of men, yet the importance of family varies.
Women played similar childbearing roles in Chinese and Greek cultures. Aside from the fact that they gave birth, they also reared their children. The women did not have many important roles outside of family in society. They were not allowed to make decisions for themselves or in their communities. Regardless of her status, even a queen was unable to take control even if her husband was away. In Chinese mythology women were commanded to honor their husband and love only him. Conversely, women were not honored unless they were gods. The god who created China in mythology was a woman who was as powerful as Zeus; "Nuwa is the goddess who separated the heaven from the earth, creating the Divine Land [China]," (Foster). Athena was the only female god recognized alongside male gods for their greatness; "Apollo, like Athena, became one of the three major Olympian Deities," (Rosenberg 56). Women seldom had noble positions, but if they did they were worshipped very much.
Aside from women, males were very powerful characters in Chinese and Greek myths. They ran the household and made the family decisions. Men were the only people allowed to take part in the government. Men were more respected by the community, and were considered to be more knowledgeable than women. Just like the Chinese, Greek men were known as warriors. A majority of the gods in both cultures were men, and the creator in the Greek myths was a male, Zeus, who maintained order on the universe.