The Iliad And Aeneid : Stories About Men Essay

743 Words Sep 20th, 2016 3 Pages
The Iliad and Aeneid are stories about men. Men are the protagonist of the story and everything else is a prop to help the protagonist. Though women are written in, their character is no match for the men of the story. The women in these stories are of two types: those who are nothing but names and those who have some depth to their character other than their names. Regardless of some having more depth than others, all the women are portrayed in a way that only serves to advance both the plot and the character of the males.
In the Iliad the story begins with a fight between Achilles and Agamemnon for a slave girl. Agamemnon is forced to give up his slave girl and demands “another prize ready for me right away” (Iliad 1.126.). The slave girls being discussed are nothing more than prizes that are won in war. They are given to the winners to do what they please with them. They have no choice and must go to whoever claims them. Homer has a fixed role for these girls. They are only important enough to be the catalyst of the plot and that’s it. It is because of the fight over the slave girl that incites Achilles to leave the army and set what is planned in motion.
The portrayal for women of a higher class isn’t any better than the slave girls. Though they seem to be portrayed more in depth, it is still for the advancement of the men and their plots. Andromache, Hector’s wife role is to show a more sympathetic side of Hector. She is there to offer a better representation of Hector…

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