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UNIT v: World History and Literature

Module 1: The Female Voice


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Have You Heard of these Stories?
P.S. Answer now because sweet treats are waiting for
you!
These long and narrative epics are
written by HOMER!
In the Iliad, the story is about
the war between…

&
TROJANS GREEKS
Odysseu
s

Meanwhile in the Odyssey, it focuses on


Odysseus’ journey homeward to Ithaca
P.S. It is a sequel of Iliad and both of these are oral traditions.
Video Presentation

Let’s Watch!!!
“Patriarchal”
means that
men ordinate
or superior
while women
are
subordinate or
inferior.

Have You Noticed?


The main characters of the Iliad and Odyssey are mostly males. With this, we can
insinuate that in the past, the society was patriarchal. In fact, we don’t only end in
insinuation because it really is true and history proves it!
So here is an excerpt from the book
“Penelopiad” entitled “A low Art”
It was written by Margaret Atwood…
Summary
The Penelopiad opens w/ the 1st person narrator PENELOPE
quoting “now that I’m dead, I know everything.” But she backed it
up by saying that this wish of hers was unfulfilled, at least not
totally. This is because the knowledge that one gets at death is not
worth the cost. She even says that she would rather not know some
of the things she learned.
 After that, she highlights the fact that she is dead and she
begins to describe the afterlife wherein when one dies,
they bring “sacks full of words” that symbolize the words
that describe your identity as it’s experienced and
perceived by others.
 She then states that though people see Odysseus’ account
as plausible while knowing that these are myths, a part of
her disbelieved in her husband but she knew she had to
believe him because she was the epitome of a loyal wife.
 Penelope then symbolizes herself as a “stick used to beat
other women with” or an ideal wife that tends to control
other women to be like her. But she wants the opposite of
it and stop other women from wanting to be like her
because it just gets oppressive.
 But then again, she remained silent because she wanted
“happy endings” and follow her role as a loyal wife to
Odysseus although she knows that people are making
rumours about her being too loyal. Atwood wanted to
show in here that being narrative is DAMAGING.
 She then decides to do storytelling about all of this now
because she deserves it even when it is just a “low art”.
She feels she deserved to let all the pain go and break free
from the chains of being an “overloyal” character which
becomes self-destructive and she knows that people would
have scorned her if she tried to tell this story when she was
alive. Unfortunately though, her lack of physical body
makes speaking difficult and she has no one to tell her
story to but she is still determined to do so.
 Atwood entitled it a low art and wrote that storytelling is a
low art because being “low” is often associated with
women and femininity – which is WRONG!
That would be all for
Module 1!

Thank You!