The Roles of Women in Ancient Greek Tragedies

In: English and Literature

Submitted By hunterxx
Words 2094
Pages 9
The roles of women in ancient Greek tragedies
. The ancient Greek society was a society dominated by men, even the plays and proses mostly constituted of heroics of men, like Hercules, Achilles and many other. In such societies , women were considered to be frail and were expected to be submissive to men, a prize of war for victors, and their main role was to support their husbands. However, in many tragedies, women were often depicted as major characters, inkling that women may not have been the weak the submissive characters as they were thought to be. Many well-known Greek plays contained several well-written, complex, and heroic female characters. Each female character took upon herself, the role of villain, the role of victim, and the role of heroine. The tragedies also revealed the problems women encountered in this era within marriage, inheritance and social life when they attempted to break out of their traditional gender roles.

Clytemnestra, daughter of Leda and Tyndareus, was probably one of the most recognizable female villains in history due to her partaking in the murder of her husband Agamemnon and his female consort, Cassandra. . in the play Agamemnon by Aeschylus, she was depicted as brutal, treacherous, and cunning woman. Her speeches made the citizens and the audiences to be well-aware of how she would welcome her husband home.
“Let there spring up into the house he never hoped
To see, where justice leads him in, a crimson path.
In all things else, my heart’s unsleeping care shall act
With the gods’ aid to set aright what fate ordained.”
(Agamemnon 910-913)
This reminds us that Clytemnestra had planned to take Agammennon’s life all along. She did not commit the murder out of passion but in cold blood. Throughout the play, Clytemnestra is spoken of with a bitter tongue and a fearful heart. She planned to murder Agamemnon with…...

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