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essaywomenmyth - Wolfson 1 Katie Wolfson CLAS170 0204 Prof...

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Wolfson 1 Katie Wolfson CLAS170 0204 Prof. Staley 11/29/07 “We Won’t Stay at Home” Moms: A New Kind of Greek Woman In Greece, the world they lived in was a patriarchal society. The woman’s role existed within the home. Cooking, cleaning, and caring for the children were all pretty much part of the daily routines of the women. A woman did not participate in myth telling, her creativity was only exerted when she gives birth. When a woman tried to speak, she was never listened to. Sometimes she was even persecuted for attempting to speak up. In Greek myth, if a woman exemplified these attributes then she was looked at as a model woman. However, if they defied these standards, the fates of these women were rarely of a successful and often tragic. When a Greek woman comes in direct conflict with an exemplary Greek male figure, the woman is always defeated and portrayed as the wrongful, even evil party. Their actions are never treated as justifiable, even when to a modern reader, they may seem just. Penelope is often used as an example of a perfect Greek woman. While her husband Odysseus is away on his twenty year journey, Penelope stays home to defend the homestead. She exemplifies the domesticity that a woman was supposed to possess. When she wants to give herself more time with the suitors, she does not act out with force or violence the way a man would. She devises a plan using her loom, a tool that is used in the daily lives of women. She claimed to be weaving a funeral shroud for her father-in- law as her last loyal act to Odysseus. Penelope plays on the fact that the suitors would see
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Wolfson 2 her wish as an endearing thing. She tricks the suitors, yet still stays within her role as a
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