Women in the Odessey

Even though she is correct in saying the gods are unfair, Calypso must obey Zeus because he is a god. Earlier in the story, we hear Telemeters arguing with the suitors. He tells them he will find news of Odysseus. He also proclaims, “[l will] give my mother to another husband” after he has found news of his father (2: 100. 248). The phrasing, “give my mother,” implies that it is Tattletale’s choice not Penelope choice who and when she will marry. Despite the fact Penelope is older; she has to listen to Telemeters, since he is the man of the house.

Later in the story, Telemeters again asserts his authority In the hall by saying, “go back to your quarters. Tend to your own tasks, [the distaff and the loom, and keep the omen/working hard as well” (21 : 435. 390-392) Not only does It show Tattletale’s power; It also shows the Job of a woman, which Is to spin In their free time. In addition, while the men are feasting and enjoying themselves, the women have to keep working. The women have barely any say in what they can do. Therefore, women are considered inferior to men in The Odyssey and in ancient Greek culture.

The Odyssey also shows that one of a woman’s roles is to be loyal to their husband. One example of a woman being looked down upon when she was not loyal to her husband is Clytemnestra. When the suitors’ ghosts go down to the Underworld, they encounter Agamemnon ghost who woefully remembers his wife, telling the Suitors, “what outrage she committed, killing the man she married once” (24: 474. 220). Clytemnestra Is shamed because of the fact that she remarried. Although she remarried because Agamemnon had not returned from the Trojan War, she Is still blamed.

Not only that, but all other women are put to shame because of this, when Agamemnon declares, “She brands with a foul name the breed of womankind” (5: 474. 222). On the other hand, Agamemnon says about Penelope steadfastness, “the name of her virtue will never die” (24: 474. 210). This time, Penelope is being touted as the perfect wife due to the fact that she stays loyal to the end. Evidently, to Agamemnon and other men, a woman and a wife should be loyal to their husband no matter the circumstances. Even women believe that this is true.

When Telemeters goes to Menelaus, Helen, when recounting the start of the Trojan War, calls herself a “shameless where” (4: 129. 162). Helen herself admits that she was disgraceful in abandoning her husband. She makes it very clear that wives should feel immoral hen they are disloyal to their husbands. In other words, the role of women as wives is to stay faithful to their husbands In The Odyssey and ancient Greek culture. On the other hand, women In The Odyssey also act as temptresses, Calypso exemplifies this.

She presents Odysseus with the greatest temptation of all, offering him, “So then,] royal son AT Alerter, Odysseus, man AT expostulate eager to leave at once Ana unary back/to your own home, your beloved native land? /Good luck to you, even so. Farewell! /But if you only knew, down deep, what pains/are fated to fill your cup before you reach that shore,/you’d stay right here, preside in our house with me/and be immortal” (5: 159. 223-232). This shows Calypso as the ultimate enticement.

Not only is she offering a way out of the troubles to come, but something that no regular man has: immortality. Odysseus refuses, although he says that this is the most tantalizing offer yet. The Other major temptress is Circe, who is so alluring that Odysseus stays with her for a year. During Circle’s first contact with the crew she is described as “the nymph with lovely braids, [Circe?and deep inside they heard her inning, lifting/her spellbinding voice as she glided back and forth/that her great immortal loom, her enchanting web/a shimmering glory only goddesses can weave. (10: 237. 241-245). All the men rush to see this woman, who has bewitched them with her voice. Circe is openly flaunting the fact she can offer food, wine, and even love, playing the part of hostess and seductress at the same time. Circe and Odysseus also make love together, attesting to Circle’s skills as a temptress. However, goddesses are not the only ones to be described as temptresses. Penelope is a prime example of how women are portrayed as enticing men.

The suitors often claim, “[she is] dangling promises, dropping hints to each [and call her] the matchless queen of cunning” (2: 97. 95-99). Let is true Penelope uses the suitors’ lust for her to meet her material wants; in fact, she proclaims that whoever brings her the best gifts will be the one she chooses as her husband. Despite her promises, she refuses to choose and sets up an impossible challenge. Overall, the women in The Odyssey and ancient Greek culture are portrayed to be seductresses and temptresses who use their gift as a way to lure men into their grasp.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *