In the first section of Odyssey, mortal women are presented to us as controlled by the stereotypes and expectations of the culture of the day, and it is only within that context that we can consider the examples Homer provides of women to be admired or despised. He provides us with clear contrasts, between Penelope and Eurycleia on the one hand, and Helen and Clytemnaestra on the other.
In Penelope’s case, it is made clear that her freedom of action is strictly controlled. Antinous feels free to advise Telemachus that as Odysseus is assumed dead, it is expected that Helen will choose another husband, or her father should do so for her. Telemachus does not challenge the logic of this, merely attacks the suitors’ behaviour and questions whether Odysseus is dead. And so Penelope is reduced to using the passive and ‘feminine’ defences of keeping the suitors waiting for a decision, and resorting to the subterfuge of weaving and unweaving her loom daily.
We also witness Penelope being ‘put in her place’ by Telemachus when she comes do...
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- The Portrayal of Women in Homer's Odyssey In the first section of Odyssey, mortal women are presented to us as controlled by the stereotypes and expectations of the culture of the day, and it is only within that context that we can consider the examples Homer provides of women to be admired or despised. He provides us with clear contrasts, between Penelope and Eurycleia on the one hand, and Helen and Clytemnaestra on the other. In Penelope’s case, it is made clear that her freedom of action is strictly controlled.... [tags: Homer Odyssey womody]
704 words (2 pages)
- Does Homer exhibit gender bias in the Odyssey? Is the nature of woman as depicted in the Odyssey in any way revealing. Upon examining the text of the Odyssey for differential treatment on men and women, it becomes necessary to distinguish between three possible conclusions. One, differences in treatment reflect the underlying Homeric thesis that women are "different but equal in nature," Two, different treatment of men and women in the text reflect a thesis that women are "different and unequal in nature" -- arguments about misogyny fall in here but a host of other interpretive possibilities are possible too.... [tags: The Odyssey by Homer]
1828 words (5.2 pages)
- The Theme of Women in The Odyssey by Homer In the Homer's epic poem the Odyssey, there are many themes that serve to make a comment about the meanings of the story. The theme of women in the poem serves to make these comments but also establishes a point of view on women in the reader. From this point of view, a perspective is developed into the "best" and "worst" in women. Achievement of this is through the characterization of many women with single notable evil qualities. Similar to the biblical story of Adam and Eve, Eve like the many women in the Odyssey brings about pain and suffering for mankind.... [tags: Papers]
1329 words (3.8 pages)
- There are different forms and examples of exemplary and classic literature which have been deemed as significant works that are highly esteemed worldwide. These examples of literature would awe the world with how much literary skill they entailed when they were composed and written: attention to details as to formation of characters, the most crafty of plots, the most eloquent speeches and lines, the most astounding of twists of scenes, and most of all, the most universal and meaningful of themes.... [tags: Honor, Homer, Iliad]
2018 words (5.8 pages)
- Homer's Odyssey and Dr. Seuss’ You're Only Old Once "What animal walks on all fours in the morning, on two legs at noon, and on three legs at night?" The famous riddle of the sphinx that has been pondered for many years; it is a universal issue that affects all people of every nationality, ethnicity, religion, or geographic area. We, ourselves, are the answer to this puzzle and yet we fight this explanation with every tool possible. We avoid it, refuse to admit it, read about it, joke about it, and deep down we often dread growing old.... [tags: Odyssey essays]
1528 words (4.4 pages)
- Women have always been treated unfairly in society. Even in the modern era, women have just begun to receive their rights, many of which their male counterparts received long before. Women have their unique history and when looking back and learning of the histories behind people, including the background on women, the first place historians look are written works. Greek society is no different since much is known about it through Greek literature, such as the epics the Iliad and the Odyssey. However, Greece is known to have been no different from other societies of its time in regards to women.... [tags: modern era, greek, odyssey]
1962 words (5.6 pages)
- For years upon years women have been looked at from all different lights and perspectives. In the past, for most cultures, most of these views placed women in less important household and societal positions as opposed to men. Women were most commonly seen as wives, mothers, and housekeepers, depending on their social class, whereas men took the head role as husband, father, provider, and protector. Men had and still have, in the majority of cases, all the power in the family. In Homer’s epic poems, The Odyssey as well as The Iliad, gender roles are very much established.... [tags: the lliad, homer, poems]
1362 words (3.9 pages)
- ... Furthermore, the notion of “The two men rushed before these [The Elders], and took turns speaking their cases” (Iliad 18.508) supports the presence of a judicial system based on laws. While in the Odyssey, Odysseus starts by accusing the Cyclops of being “Lawless outrageous” (Odyssey 9.105) this account foreshadows one of the aspects of the Cyclops culture, which is the lack of laws. Therefore, this lack of laws indicates the absence of an ordered structure of the culture, unlike the city displayed on Hephaestus’ shield.... [tags: judicial, agriculture, economics]
994 words (2.8 pages)
- The Odyssey: A Timeless Classic Homer’s The Odyssey has taught numerous lessons that simply cannot be expressed through mere words. The Odyssey portrays a mortal man’s struggle among strangers, monsters, and women in his attempt to return home after fighting in the Trojan War. Through Odysseus’s episodes, readers can relate to their own struggles in life and how these experiences shape who they become. Two poets who have encompassed this theme of learning from one’s struggle include Constantine Cavafy and Alfred Lord Tennyson.... [tags: journey, spiritual, temptations]
907 words (2.6 pages)
- In The Odyssey and Ramayana, the authors depict the characters through the eyes of their culture and civilization. In both works, the representation of men and women reflects an ideal that was sought after at the time. Particularly, the texts focus on the relationships between the main characters and the religion, as well as the main character and their familial ties. In The Odyssey, there is Athena and Odysseus while in Ramayana, there is Rama and Sita. Both Athena and Sita represent the idealistic woman which base their actions and thoughts off of their emotions.... [tags: Character Analysis ]
1093 words (3.1 pages)