Comparing Women In Ancient Greece And The Odyssey

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Women in Ancient Greece and The Odyssey In ancient Greek culture, restrictions and rights were affected by one’s gender. Women were mostly treated to be in a lower social class than the men. Men were allowed to do certain actions more freely, such as deciding to be in bed with women other than their wives. Therefore, Greek myths began to reflect from the Greek culture, displaying clear signs of a patriarchal society. In the The Odyssey, however, Homer told a story containing a lot more respect towards female characters. Examples are the heroines Penelope and Athena. The Odyssey is a rare ancient Greek literature to include such female characters with strong characteristics. This leads readers to believe Homer greatly respected women and therefore the regard towards women reflected in his stories. Homer told The Odyssey with strong heroines to allow his audience to perceive women as stronger individuals, attempting to change Greece's patriarchal society. In ancient Greece, gender affected the potential of an individual’s growth in power and abilities. Men within greek mythology were usually depicted as…show more content…
Like today, Homer made efforts to convince others women could be compared to men. Although recognition for women has improved since then, women are still portrayed below men. As for The Odyssey, one might also conclude that Homer did not include heroines because of respect towards them. The women could also be seen through a different perspective, that women in The Odyssey are just mere obstacles for Odysseus. The women are included to cause Odysseus, the archetypal hero of the story, to change and become stronger during his journey home. The interpretation of Homer’s choice of such strong females is entirely up to the readers. However, the women in The Odyssey will always play important roles in helping Odysseus’ archetypal journey back to
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