Women In Beowulf And Grendel's Role Of Women

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Some may assume that women get taken advantage of in history instead of literature, but women have always been the “lesser” gender when it comes to actions and qualities. Many actions have always been known as a ‘man’s job’, such as when it comes to fighting, defending, etc. Women are still seen as second to the male figures in today’s world. In the epic poem Beowulf, Grendel’s Mother and Welthow convey how in this time period gender roles of women are depicted by men due to the women acting as servants/caregivers, displaying weakness, and portraying kind-hearted qualities.
Grendel’s mother and Welthow both exhibit feminine qualities while still remaining very different. Grendel’s mother, being a monster, is expected to be less human-like
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In Beowulf, Grendel’s mother fights for her son and stands up for herself no matter the cost: “She’s taking revenge for your victory over Grendel,/ For your strength, your mighty grip, and that mon/ster’s/Death…. And now there’s another one, a second hungry/ Fiend, determined to avenge the first,/ A monster willing and more able/ to being us more sorrow” (“Beowulf” 1333-1341). Some could prove how because of her drive to fight, Grendel’s mother may not be so evil. The maternal instinct could be what is pushing her to kill in her son’s name. Today, Mother’s would be the first to take charge when someone causes harm or pain to their child. Grendel’s mother is demonstrating her motherly instinct and people overlook that due to her being a murderous monster. Grendel’s mother is defying gender roles by standing up for her son and what she believes …show more content…
Grendel’s mother may show her justice through fighting, but she is doing what she feels is best in memory of her son. Everyone sees her as evil: “She’d brooded on her loss, misery had brewed/ in her heart, that female horror, Grendel’s/ mother, living in the murky cold lake/ assigned her since Cain had killed his only/ brother” (“Beowulf” 1259-1263). Yet in this poem there is a silver lining. Men were not used to women standing up for anything, therefore they would not notice how Grendel may have not wanted this violence in the first place. Grendel had a glorious mother for defending his honor after he was defeated. This was not noticed because they were sticking to what they know and not straying too far from what they believe, and that is to protect their people without

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