“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. …show more content…
As Odysseus arrives to the island-home of Calypso, the beautiful nymph, he is quickly held prisoner. Although it may seem that Odysseus felt that he was truly a prisoner, he, at one point in his stay, enjoyed Calypso’s presence and was willingly seduced by her. It is clear that over the seven-year stay, Calypso had fallen in love with Odysseus and he had let his vulnerability to women become his harshest weakness. Her female dominance was even shown at times of manipulation through her ability to hold a man prisoner and prevent him from carrying on with his travels home. Although, when it came upon Athena that Odysseus was eager to arrive home to Ithaca, Zeus sent Hermes to have Calypso free Odysseus. By Zeus’s actions, it is evident that although Odysseus was held prisoner, women lacked this power and leverage in society compared to men and were subject to this treatment due to this gender
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The quote above gives the reader a key idea to her feelings and the use of her feelings to release and aid Odysseus in his travels home. Besides the visit from Hermes, Odysseus is homesick and indeed needed a miracle to leave the island. Given to that, Calypso love gives Odysseus the start of his return.
Whether it be a movie or novel, women are commonly portrayed as objects of beauty and the weaker gender. It is a typical stereotype that women are weak and men are strong; women are made to serve men. However, Homer’s The Odyssey is different; the epic poem proves that women can not only be manipulative, but that they can also be powerful and often stronger than men. Women in this epic poem have several roles like being interventions throughout Odysseus’ journey home from the Trojan War.
Meanwhile, Penelope is in Ithaka busy dealing with the suitors who vie for her hand in marriage, tending to her loom, and directing her serving maids at work. In Homer’s epic poem, women, and goddesses are treated differently than men and gods when it comes to their freedom, expectations, and image. One common occurrence in this epic poem is unequal freedom for women,
The respectable male characters such as Odysseus treat women well, but mostly for their appearance and marriage potential. Near the beginning, after washing up on the island of the Pheaecians, he meets a girl and says, “Mistress: please: are you divine, or mortal? If one of those who dwell in the wide heaven, you are the most near to Artemis, I should say,” (8). To
Throughout history, the equality of women to men has been regarded as a social taboo. It was a universal understanding that women were always subordinate to their dominant males. Pre Modern Greece expressed these views through their social expectations, hierarchical structures and general lack of acceptance. This ubiquitous truth for this society was challenged in Homer’s The Odyssey, with his strongly developed and diverse female cast.
To accomplish this analyzation I have structured this paper into an intro paragraph, four body paragraphs, and a conclusion paragraph. The first body paragraph explains how Penelope’s forced marriage with Odysseus supports the patriarchy. The second paragraph analyzes Penelope’s character, and how the story diminishes her character to make men seem more powerful. The third paragraph dives into the relationship with the suitors and Penelope. I analyze how Penelope uses her situation to her advantage, and how that undermines the patriarchy.
On the other hand, women are shamed for having the same relationships. These double standards are portrayed in literature as well. In Homer’s The Odyssey, we see these double standards applied to its’ story and characters. It was especially applied to Odysseus, the main Greek hero in this epic.
When Odysseus is held captive by Calypso on her paradise island, he takes his opportunity to leave and continue on his journey home. Calypso has taken great care of him and seduces him, one of the reasons he has stayed with her for so long. Odysseus is not exactly in his right mind during his stay with Calypso because she is able to almost control or manipulate him. When Odysseus is given the opportunity to go home, it is only with the help of Zeus, Hermes and Athena to persuade Calypso to allow him to leave. Odysseus, while staying on her island, knew that this was not what he wanted.
Women are weak, helpless, and have no real purpose other than to serve men and take care of children. . . or so they were perceived in history. In the Odyssey, one can see that Homer’s portrayal of women challenges the depiction of women during that time period. Throughout the book, many women intervened in Odysseus’ journey home to Ithaca, for better or for worse. One will see Penelope, Athena, Circe, and other women impact Odysseus’ expedition home.
While men are generally known to take advantage of women, Circe misleads and overpowers them for her own gain. Her need to show dominance helps build her strong and formidable character that has a vital impact on the lives of Odysseus and his men. Throughout the poem, Circe’s character establishes how women are able to conquer and prevail over others with their own strength and
Degradation of Women Viewed from Modern American Context On Tuesday, February 6th, the Crockett House Firm charged the epic poem, The Odyssey, for representing the degradation of women, specifically, women being objectified and misrepresented. The Crockett House Firm wants these charges to be judges from a modern, American cultural context. The Crockett House firm is the prosecution and finds The Odyssey guilty of the charges. The Griffin House Firm is the defense for this trial and finds The Odyssey not guilty.
Clara Barton, she founded the American Red Cross which helps more than 100 million people a year. Harriet Tubman, she guided over 300 slaves to freedom on the Underground Railroad. Marie Curie, she was the first woman to win the nobel prize; she also won it another time after. Throughout history, women have defied all odds and began or did something that was amazing. The Odyssey written by Homer has shown view points in his story that contrast greatly to the conventional way of thinking.
She tells of how the male gods such as Zeus fraternize with whomever they desire, but when a goddess sleeps with a mortal, she is punished and reprimanded (5.129-142). When Odysseus returns home to Penelope, he explains how “the nymph Calypso held him back, deep in her arching caverns, craving him for a husband” (23.77-78) and expects his wife to simply accept and understand his situation. If the roles were switched, however, and Penelope had slept with another man, Odysseus would have no doubt been angered, even though Penelope believed him to be long dead. During 8th century B.C., women were considered the property of men. A girl belonged to her father until she married, where she then belonged to her husband.
The Feminist Theory Throughout Greek mythology and literature, women are downcast as second class citizens, and more often than not, this view forces women to conform to their traditional gender roles. However, when these women acknowledge and begin to resist the patriarchy, they are able to become strong individuals. Through the plays Medea and The Bacchae by Euripides, and Oedipus and Antigone by Sophocles, this theme presents itself through women who found themselves resisting what society expected of them. Each play demonstrates the different ways in which they stood firm in what they believed even with the odds against them. In the end, it didn’t always work out for these women, but they made their voices heard, and stood their ground
Known as an epic war poem, The Iliad delves into topics concerning masculinity, heroism, and bravery. Women play a modest but important role that forms the structure of the plot. Helen’s character aids in expanding Menelaus and Paris’ characters. Homer does not delve into the lives of women like he does with the men, speaking to the notion of inferiority between the sexes. Homer displays women as tangible items through male interactions with one another.