The OT revelation was mediated through a Semitic culture in which male superiority and chauvinism were almost built into the structure of things. That male-oriented culture was available to God as a medium for communication and He was content to use it.
In the early days of Israel in Palestine, the ‘nation’ was not a nation in the sense that we would mean by that term today. During these years, the Pentateuch came to be penned.
The first five books of our Bible are consequently mediated through a culture already functioning on tribal lines. The dominant role of fathers and men in general was inherited as a norm.
The God whom we meet in the OT does not seem to concentrate any primary attack on this state of affairs. At the same time, in many of His words and acts, the creator God showed Himself dissatisfied with a worldview in which women were so dehumanized.
The creation stories of Genesis describe the intention of the Lord as He made man. According to Genesis, the male is supposed to leave his parental home and cleave to his wife – in reality, the woman left her home and moved into her husband’s family house.
Throughout the OT, many incidents are highlighted which give the sense of the Lord God trying to retrieve some sense of equality and dignity for the female part of His human creation. Even in the announcement of judgement upon a foreign nation, the Lord promises special care for surviving —
I will protect the orphans who remain among you.
Your widows, too, can depend on me for help.” Jeremiah 49:11