MedeaPaper.docx - Keeston Raynes ENG 251-02 Gender Dynamics...

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Keeston Raynes ENG 251-02 November 25, 2018 Gender Dynamics in Medea Men and women have always wrestled with the balance of power and privilege between the genders. The theme of gender roles, and specifically the role of women in society, has been a frequent theme all throughout literature. This theme is indicatively exhibited in Medea , a play written by Euripides. There is a clear difference between the roles of men and women in the hierarchy of the society shown in Medea , and Euripides distinctly criticizes this. Although women did not directly hold roles of higher power than men, Euripides shows women to be just as, if not, more powerful and influential then men. In the balance of power and privilege, women may have been less privileged, but Medea shows that women can display incredible strength and intelligence despite living in a male-dominated society. Women were almost always underprivileged in ancient societies like the one in Medea . In Corinth, the setting of the play, while men went to work women were expected to perform all of the household chores; care for children, cook, clean, etcetera. The main character of the play, Medea, felt so strongly about her place in society that she claimed that, “Of all living, breathing, thinking creatures, women are the most absolutely wretched” (Euripides 764). Men made the rules of their society, while women were looked at as feeble and apathetic. Some men even thought of women as frivolous beings with no mind of their own. Medea even claims that she would “rather face battle three times than go through child birth once” (Euripides 764). The clear

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