Agamemnon and Greek Society

Topics: Agamemnon, Homer, Odyssey Pages: 4 (962 words) Published: December 3, 2012
Jen Krupa
Final Draft Seminar paper

The Portrayal of Women in Greek Writing

Sappho, Aeschylus and Homer are Greek authors that discuss the role of women in Greek Society. Women hold traditional Greek roles in society taking on the role as wife and mother. These roles are generally viewed as subordinate roles to men in Greek times. This can be seen through the poetry of Sappho. It can be argued that women also hold very powerful negative or positive roles in Greek society. This can be seen in the works of Aeychlus and Homer.

Sappho is a poet who portrays the women as having traditioal roles in Greek society where women are regarded as subordinates to men. Women are described as beautiful and sweet, however Sappho implies that this is their role in society, to look pretty for their husband. The audience can see this in her poem titled We Drink Your Health We Drink Your Health

Lucky Bridegroom!
Now the wedding you
Asked for is over
And your wife is the
Girl You Asked For;
She's a bride who is
Charming to look at,
With eyes as soft as honey and a face
That love has lighted
With his own beauty
Aphrodite has surely
outdone herself in
Doing honor to you. (Barnard 30)

In another poem by Sappho, entitled Sleep Darling she portrays women as mothers.
Sleep, Darling
I have a small
Daughter called
Cleis, who is?
Like a Golden
I Wouldn't
Take all Croesus'
Kingdom with love
Thrown in for her. (Barnard 17)
Along with being a wife it is the womens job to take care of her children. The men are traditionally out fighting wars as seen in Homer's Odyssey. In this poem Sappho refers to her daughter as a "Golden Flower"., which shows the deeply personl love she has for her daughter. Sappho Says "I wouldn't take all od Croseus kingdom with love thrown in for her." She implies that there is no amount of love, even a kingdom that can match her love for her daughter Cleis. Sappho portrays the women as...

Cited: Aeschylus, Robert Fagles, and William Bedell. Stanford. The Oresteia. New York, NY: Penguin, 1984. Print.
Homer, and Robert Fagles. The Odyssey. New York: Penguin, 1997. Print.
Sappho, and Mary Barnard. Sappho: A New Translation. Berkeley, CA: University of California, 1986. Print.
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