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Women characters are displayed as of great influence. Their important role and significance they bring about in the play clearly shows the hidden power and the capabilities in them. They have great impacts throughout Homer’s book, ‘The Odyssey’.
The objective of the research is to determine if the women really depicted any importance/significance, impact or development throughout the play, how they did it and how they made their efforts a success.
Do female characters in ‘The Odyssey’ have any significance impacts or importance? And how have their roles gradually changed?Significance of the studyThis helps in broadening the way of understanding of different cultures, their code of ethics and rule of etiquette.
By analyzing the book, it helps understand how women were perceived and treated. The topic is of my liking and interest because ‘The odyssey’ is a typical narration of a male dominated world and how the females are seen as nothing but subjects. It is important for me to bring this in light and emphasize on importance of the women in the ancient society.
In this text, homer assigns women with roles that were never heard of them in the ancient Greek society. Women were well known in giving birth and child upbringing. He brings out different major ideals of a descent woman and assigns them to different women who are essential in of the development of the play. There are those who are presented as mortal women and others are goddesses but they take up s role of helping men.
Throughout the play, their maternal nature outlines itself in the sense of love, compassion and affection especially that of a mother to son and that of a wife to husband.
Their true and real feelings are expressed in the whole play as the story line is based on military, adventure and voyage life that is full of hardship and challenges.In the first instance, the story displays a general view of a male dominated society, how the women were treated and regarded and displayed in the society. The way mem behaved towards the women has a greater impact on one’s ability and freedom. They were not given any right to make any decisions that concerns them or the society at large. They were to be their subjects and do accordingly to how they were instructed. This brings a vivid description of the olden times and a real picture of how these women behaved and conducted themselves in such a society with harsh conditions.
Throughout the play, in as much as they held inferior positions they were still valued and treated with respect. In as much as the ancient traditions were against the will of a woman airing out her thoughts, feelings, strength and energy, homer depicts them as of great importance and impact throughout his narration. He assigns them with roles and the story line clearly explains how each of them worked towards fulfilling her role in a unique manner. They show unique and outstanding relationships and good intentions and different personalities depending on their traits. This brings about perfection as they use their energy and intelligence to peer through the challenges and circumstances at hand.He uses women that are strong willed, intelligent, cunning, tough and hardworking despite the toughness of the situation.
Within the story are three types of women; the goddess, the seductress and the hostess/ good wife. They portray different elements and figures that are most essential in the play as it revolves around them. Although the society regarded them as not good in decision making and that the men were better off, homer brings a twist in the narration of the tale as evident in Odysseus voyage back home from his military battle. He brings out goddess calypso who holds Odysseus in captivity for many years. The reason for this is that she had a lust for sexual desirability that made her fall in love with Odysseus to the extent of sleeping with him. She wanted him to stay in her island with her and never to return to his people.
Goddess of wisdom, Athena, is outlines and outstands the character of the most powerful female as she uses her intelligence and bravery to make the impossible happen. She is confident, practical and very crafty in her doings. As she is given the role of goddess of war and battle, she clearly understands Odysseus pain and struggle. Her leadership skills, strength and energy, confidence and intelligence helped her in rightful decision making governing Odysseus travel and eventually turning out as a success.In Penelope, according to the ancient Greek society customs and culture, she was supposed to get married to the suitors who came seeking for her hand in marriage since the long disappearance of Odysseus.
But to her, she could heed to no one and vowed to continue waiting for his husband until the day he eventually comes back. She uses her intelligence and wits to fool and discard all the suitors by feigning fake sorrow of the death of his husband’s father. She spent all her time in the day weaving a burial shroud and during the night, she sits down to demolish it and this was her daily routine.
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