Although Odysseus is a famous, intelligent and heroic figure, his loyalty to Penelope is nonexistent. This is revealed by his affairs with other woman, his extended journey home, and by the fact that he failed to make Penelope his priority. Loyalty is not a difficult concept, all Odysseus had to do to fulfill this was avoid other women, and put Penelope above his selfish ways. His failure to do this proves him to be an unreliable husband, who does not deserve his selfless and trustworthy wife. Loyalty is an essential part of marriage or any relationship and requires both people involved in the relationship. In this case Odysseus is one of those people, but unlike in a good relationship he fails to uphold the duties to be faithful to the other
However Odysseus, despite being a good man, does not display honor and dignity when he refuses to forgive the suitors, then slaughters them all, and has an affair with Calypso. Since Penelope can react to tough situations with grace and poise, she is more admirable than
In Homer’s Poem, The Odyssey, Penelope is the exceptionally patient and clever spouse of the infamous hero, Odysseus, and the mother of Telemachus. One poignant factor of Penelope’s character is her patience and devotion which is displayed throughout the poem. With her husband absent for a great majority of her life for the later of twenty years and his location unknown, Penelope stays, patiently awaiting Odysseus’ return, all whilst preserving their estate and raising her son by herself. Throughout this time, she had many persistent suitors in pursuit of her, abusing her husband’s absence.
In the background of the main plot, Penelope struggles with a very important decision throughout the time Odysseus remains lost at sea. After many years without Odysseus’ return, the prospect of a new marriage inclines itself onto Penelope. The sons of the noblest families come to live with Penelope in order to court her for marriage. However, Penelope still loves Odysseus and remains loyal to him by stalling the marriage. She still continues to persist in being hopeful and refuses to believe that Odysseus will never return to her, so she creates several excuses to help her evade marriage for as long as possible. She presents tasks to keep the
Odysseus’ wife, Penelope, bravely held down the front in Ithaca while her husband struggled to find his way back home. In Book 18, Penelope spoke to the ever-so-desperate suitors about what Odysseus “told” her before he left. She claimed “He caught my right hand. . .and said . . . ‘but once you see the beard on the boy’s cheek, you wed the man you like, and leave your house behind’. . .” However, that was a lie, since shortly after, Homer wrote “Staunch Odysseus glowed with joy to hear all
Homer’s, The Odyssey is an epic which was written many years ago. At that time, in Ancient Greek society, the dominant role was played by men and the women were considered and given an inferior position. But The Odyssey was often considered a women’s epic because women played an important role. Women in The Odyssey are portrayed as powerful, wise and controlling because they ensure that the illusion of male success will go on - they speak as men through women.
Penelope’s character displays how some women are able to exceed society’s standards and show strength and cleverness when it is necessary. For the many years that Odysseus has been away, Penelope is able
In “Gender and the Homeric Epic”, an article by Nancy Felson and Laura M. Slatkin, the gender roles of various characters in The Odyssey, an epic poem by Homer, are examined in the constraining and progressive lens Homer takes. The characters of the epic most explicitly analyzed are Odysseus and his wife, Penelope; in this article the authors show the traditional gender roles both adhere to, but also exhibit the ways in which the characters are able to reach across the restraining gender roles, without making this story entirely about gender. Through this article one can see that the constraining nature of gender roles seen in society, is not inherent in the society presented in The Odyssey, which describes an intrinsic fluidity which is seen in a plethora of characters.
In the epic poem, The Odyssey, by Homer, there are many female characters who play the role of a villain. Calypso, Scylla, Charybdis, and the sirens are among the women with the largest, negative impacts on Odysseus’ journey home. Though some women, such as Athena, Eurycleia, and Penelope, are loyal to Odysseus throughout the poem. With such a wide range of female characters, they all contribute different things throughout the book, whether the impact of their actions is negative or positive. Regardless of the outcomes, Homer has quite a modern view of female representation in his poem.
However, for a woman in Homer’s society, who belongs to either her father and her husband, she is the head of the household for 20 years in the absence of Odysseus. She does not preserve peace in the household, but she takes actions to prevent the destruction of ranks of the household by delaying her marriage so that when Odysseus come back home, he can reclaim the kingship, or when Telemachus is old enough, he can take the throne which is rightfully his. In the position where women have no power, she uses her intellectual strength to control the suitors. Penelope promises the suitors that she will choose one of them to marry after she finishes weaving the shroud for Laertes because it is shameful if she does not do anything for her father-in-law. The suitors eagerly comply to her request without knowing what Penelope plans to do. After discovering Penelope’s deception, the suitors complain, “Her very words, and despite our pride and passion we believed her. So by day she’d weave at her great and growing web- by night, by the light of torches set beside her, she would unravel all she’d done. Three who years, she deceived us blind, seduced us with this scheme” (Homer, Odysseus, 2. 101- 106). With one simple promise, she is able to keep the suitors in control for three years, which demonstrates her intellectual strength. Penelope, a woman who perceives to be a weak character and unable to keep the household together, manages to assert dominance over 108 men with words alone. She shows wisdom in personal management in private household, satisfying the role of head of the household, through
In spite of the fact that Homer’s Odyssey is an epic story of a man’s gallant journey, women play a huge part throughout. Their unique yet controversial personalities, intentions, and relationships are vital to the development of this epic and adventurous journey of Odysseus. The poem by Homer was written at a time when women had an inferior position in society, yet that didn’t stop them from being any less influential. All of the women throughout the Odyssey possess different qualities, but all of them help to define the role of the ideal woman.
Appropriation is defined as being able to shift ideas, visuals, key concepts, characters and settings from one context into another in order to manipulate old notions into new innovated ones, for example the Odyssey by poet, Homer in comparison to Margret Atwood’s the Penelopiad. The Penelopiad as a modernized, fresh view of a vaguely described character, which originated from the Odyssey named, Penelope. Penelope is an obscure or cryptic female character who is interpreted to be a cunning, sly, secretive, intelligent, passionate character that can be compared to Shakespeare’s Juliet. Penelope goes through stages of enlightenment, struggle and happiness and questions the way society works as well as trustworthy relationships. The Penelopiad
“The Odyssey,” written by Greek poet Homer is an epic tale depicting the brutally enduring quest home of the Greek hero, Odysseus. Within this heroic story, women play a very large and pivotal role in Odysseus’s trip home from the Trojan War. In his attempt to get back to his wife, Penelope, Odysseus’s progress is constantly hindered by the intervention of women who will do anything in order to either convince the heroic figure to stay with them or have him killed. The intentions of the women in the epic are all very different but one of the most prominent roles lies in the seductresses and the alluring women who will deeply influence Odysseus. Most importantly, Penelope plays a large role in portraying the importance of women’s roles in the story. Through specific incidences, this influence of women is clearly depicted.
Women have always been portrayed as the weaker sex compared to men. It has been demonstrated in history itself and throughout literary works. Shakespeare’s Macbeth and Homer’s The Odyssey, however, portray women to be more powerful than men, even when their society thought otherwise and underestimated them because of their gender. Lady Macbeth, The Three Witches, Queen Arête and Penelope demonstrate the astute, charming, and ambitious side of women that was overlooked by men when it came to having power and making decisions. Both works show the hardships of being a woman in power. At the same time, they give their perspectives of the power women disclosed.