Patriarchal Women In The Iliad

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Throughout the Iliad, females have been and fought over but also respected. Even though the society is patriarchal, women are necessary. Female goddesses are treated as equals to gods, while mortal women are inferior to mortal men. There are many examples of the objectivity of women and women being used as war prizes. Chryseis and Briseis and both women held captive in the epic. Also, Athena and Hera play a major role in the outcome of the battle. Andromache causes the Iliad to have a humane side. These women are crucial to the Iliad and the storyline. Many heroes have a female as a war prize in the Iliad. The women are important in this aspect because they incentivize the fighting for the heroes. Also, if a hero does not have a war prize, he can fight for one on the battlefield. Briseis is an example of a war prize given to a hero. Achilles was awarded her and she resides with him at the beginning of the epic. However, when she gets taken away from him, it hurts Achilles’ honor. Homer writes, “Bring back the girl, fair-cheeked Briseis. If he won’t give her up, I’ll come myself.” This causes the whole problem with Achilles in the epic. If…show more content…
Athena and Hera are the major goddesses that are developed. Their divine intervention is crucial to the culture of the Iliad. While mortal women have little authority and power in society, female goddesses are extremely respected and looked up to. Gods and goddesses are respected equally by the mortals. The Iliad states, “Why are you two so upset, Athena and Hera? It’s not battle fatigue. You two never get tired of pulverizing Trojans, your mortal enemies.” This quotation shows how gods and goddesses pick sides in wars. When there is an immortal on your side, you have to respect them. Without these powerful female goddesses, the Iliad would show little importance towards women. Having very powerful female gods helps the role of women in the
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