Stereotypes

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#1 Stereotypes of women in the play, Agamemnon

Woman in Aeschylus’s Agamemnon are perceived as untrustworthy and ignorant characters. The role of women in ancient Greek life, was considered to be insignificant compared to that of Greek men. And yet, in tragedies, women were often written as major characters, revealing insights on how women were treated and thought of in society. Many well-known Greek plays contain several well-written, complex, female characters. Each female character takes upon herself, the role of villain, the role of victim, and the role of heroine. Drama and theatre in the ancient Greek world expresses the communities’ concerns in regards to their ambitions, fears, hope and their deepest sympathy. In Greek drama, playwrights often included pivotal female roles, despite the fact that the cast was strictly male. The role of women in ancient Greek life is deemed irrelevant compared to that of Greek men, however, in tragedies, women are often written as major characters, revealing important insights on the perceptions and treatment of women in society. For a woman to possess qualities such as leadership and strength is not typical, in fact it is seen as masculine and un-ladylike. Many Greek plays contain several complex female characters; Aeschylus is a playwright whom incorporates a very complex female character, Clytemnestra in his play Agamemnon. Although Clytemnestra is one of the most recognizable and noted female villains due to her involvement in the murder of her husband and his concubine, one can argue that her actions are justifiable. Whether her vengeful actions are triggered by the death of her daughter Iphigenia, her love for Aegisthus or the jealousy of her husband’s mistress Cassandra, either is motive enough to make her turn to evil. There is a quote made by the chorus that suggest evidence that women are incompetent and over emotional for leadership, "It is very like a woman in command

to concede gratitude before...
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