The Significance Of Women In Spartan Women By Sarah Pomeroy

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In her book, Spartan Women, Sarah B. Pomeroy explores the fundamentals of Spartan women’s society and the significance they contributed to the country as a whole. While surrounded by Greek antiquity, the women of Sparta differed vastly from their Greek counterparts. Not only were they of a higher significance than Greek women but were also an attribute in the education and upbringing of the children of Sparta which was the goal of their society. Sarah Pomeroy explores how Spartan women were not only considered almost as equals to men, but in some cases, even more important. The best depiction of Pomeroy’s view of Spartan women, which set the tone for her book, is her statement that “In the absence of fathers during children’s formative years, women … were the principle, if not sole, influence in the creation of Spartan citizens.” Women and men had to work together to raise the young since the men were either in battle or training for battle. In this aspect it is easy to see that when the man of the house is away, the woman must take on more responsibility and not let the child falter or become a weak part of society. Pomeroy shows that if both parents were strong in the raising of their child then they’d produce better offspring. This is how Pomeroy explains that without the women, Sparta would not have been such an iconic part of Greece history. Spartan upbringing and sexual equality was extremely different from other Greek societies because of their focus of military dominance. Young Spartan girls were raised to become the mothers who would produce the best “hoplites and mothers of hoplites.” Spartan society lived and breathed the creation of ‘hoplites’ or warriors of Sparta. As she explores the different aspects of Sp... ... middle of paper ... ... been the character of most women who must see their loved ones go off to war throughout time. While she does not outwardly attribute this trait solely to Spartans, it is clear that she is making the parallel to let the reader create their own idea. Pomeroy shows that perhaps Spartan’s were so extreme in this aspect, to possibly even seek martyrdom, that it began this image of ideology. Whether brought about by Spartan women or made as the iconic symbol, it is clear that this sense of pride of a fallen soldier for his country is and ever will be prevalent. Sarah Pomeroy has depicted a state of Sparta that has a secret back bone of women whom were keeping the traditions and society alive. Not only were these women brave in seeing their children and husbands off to battle, but running the society of Sparta that has become the iconic symbol of a warrior state.

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