Reflecting On And Contrasting Ancient Greece 's Gender Roles Essay examples

1137 Words Nov 25th, 2015 5 Pages
Reflecting On and Contrasting Ancient Greece’s Gender Roles in Literature
Sandra Day O’Connor once said that “society as a whole benefits immeasurably from a climate in which all persons, regardless of race or gender, may have the opportunity to learn respect, responsibility, advancement and remuneration based on ability.” Unfortunately, in Ancient Greek society, the rights and mobility of women were constricted. Greek poems often discussed the mistreatment and disrespect of women. Sappho used the treatment of women as a subject in several of her poems, while Homer’s writing subconsciously echoed his culture’s attitudes towards genders. The poems from Ancient Greece generally reflected how Greek women were merely objects and men were expected to be masculine; however, some of the poems contradicted their gender roles suggesting that not everyone was content with the patriarchy.
The objectification of women was common in Greek literature. Sappho felt very strongly about the demeaning portrayal of women. In “One Girl,” Sappho expresses her concern for a girl who “the passing feet of shepherds for ever tear and wound, / until the purple blossom is trodden in the ground” (28). Women were often abused in Ancient Greece and the girl in the poem being manipulated by the shepherds proves that men thought women were at their disposal. Another writer whose poems shed light on sexism was Homer. His famous epic The Iliad was a sexist fest where women were traded left and right. The…

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