In the Old English tradition, women are seen as dutiful slaves or angelic creatures. In some cases men treated women like sexual objects and did not respect them, it was wergild. The importance of women varies from the physical beauty and sexuality of sex, or to nothing in these stories. In some women symbols power and strength, even godliness personified, such as in Beowulf. The women in Beowulf are over looked however if you closely exam the text you will se that the women in this text are a valuable asset to this story.
In The Odyssey women are generally portrayed as manipulative and deceitful and Homer is a sexist who holds a double standard of morality for men and for women. There is one thing that all the women, be they human or god, in The Odyssey have in common: they are all very clever. There are two ways that the reader can interpret this characteristic that women share: either Homer feels that women are very intelligent or he feels that women are underhanded and sneaky. The opinion of Homer is probably the latter because the most of the women that Odysseus, the hero of the novel, encounters use their intelligence against him. Kalypso and Kerke both try to seduce Odysseus into staying on their islands, while Penelope uses her cleverness to trick the suitors into believing that it took her three years to weave a shroud.
From the epics, one can assume that women are sneaky, manipulative, seductive, unfaithful, and disloyal beings that ensnare men and ultimately lead them to their destruction, whether physically or mentally. Not to say that there are not women like this in society but, portraying the majority of the female characters in this manner gives off the impression that women in general are all like that, which is most definitely not the case. Therefore the portrayal of these women is misleading and a little overdramatic. Works Cited Homer. The Iliad.
Mythology shows that women in ancient Greece and Rome were perceived to be subservient to men in that they were often objectified, portrayed as petty and weak, and were either taken advantage of or considered evil by men. Women were treated as possessions and shown to be valued for their beauty alone in many of the Greek and Roman myths. The myths surrounding the Trojan War especially show how women were objectified. When Paris was asked to judge which Goddess was the most beautiful Aphrodite bribed him, promising, “that the fairest woman in all the world should be his” (249). This myth shows that the Greeks and Romans saw women as possessions that could be stolen and bartered away.
We are able to gain perspective on their society’s hierarchy and how their relationship with the gods. In “The Furies” both gods and goddesses have a role in deciding the fate of Orestes. However, in the Rape of… the goddesses have little influence, which is seem when Demeter cannot get her daughter back and Zeus choses to give away a goddess, Persephone, to Hades. Homer’s literature has a harsher and oppressive view of women through dimming down their intelligence, and not giving them any influence even though they are goddesses of Olympus. While “The Rape of Persephone" displays a more repressive force against women, both myth provide an understanding of their views on how women must be
However, Greece is known to have been no different from other societies of its time in regards to women. While works such as the Odyssey by Homer create powerful Greek women figures, they do not reflect the typical views or treatment of women during the time period they were written. Homer was very much the feminist of his time, diverging from the conventional views of women with his story. Women in his story are at times cunning and deceptive with men, shattering the old view of women as weak and helpless; yet at the same time, they assist men tremendously, sometimes even putting their own reputation at stake to help males. Through descriptions of iconic females and their actions, women in Homer’s Odyssey serve as both loyal allies and formidable foes for men, greatly influencing their thoughts and actions and contrasting the typical view of the author’s time that portrayed women as powerless.
Robert Baker, in his essay “Pricks and Chicks”, argues that the identification of women reflects our conception of them, and because our conception of women is male chauvinistic, the root of our problem lies with the conception of sex in general. In this essay I will argue that the words that we use to refer to women such as; bitch, cunt, babe, etc. are almost purely negative in the views of the female gender. These words usually refer to something dirty and sexual, and this association between these words and women shows that we define women as well as something dirty and sexual. Not only do these words objectify women, but they also contend to keep women at a social stand-still, by forbidding them to have any true progress in the competition of the sexes.
Growing from a young woman who was humiliated by the duality of her sexuality, to a woman who reclaims her sexuality through her sexual experiences as a dominatrix. Although not all feminists think alike, some may even dispute Febos claims; that being a dominatrix can result in female empowerment. In recent conventions regarding, ‘dominatrix’ the figure is either hypersexualized or seen as a threat. This harmful parallel normalized ‘dommes’ or ‘dominatrixes’ as a threat to 'traditional sexuality.' Ultimately, these critics believe this line of work leads to the disempowerment of women and creates a hostile persona.
Furthermore, Odysseus’s wife, Penelope is portrayed as very clever and loyal. While her husband is gone for several years, many men try to marry her, but she stays faithful to her husband because she still believes he will come back. Penelope is also a smart woman, which is not typical in Classical Athens: she told the suitors she
Aphrodite and Athena were both great powerful women who were revered as goddesses in greek mythology. They both were greatly worshipped, however due to their distinct personality traits they were worshipped and spoken about and very different ways. Both goddesses are immortal and female, and both seem to distinguish the incongruous gender roles between men and women throughout ancient Greece. What makes these two goddesses interesting, however, is their differences, which will determine how they will be reflected in myth. On one hand you have Athena, the androgynous goddess of war and wisdom.