Siren Songs: Gender, Audiences, and Narrators in the Odyssey

Siren Songs: Gender, Audiences, and Narrators in the Odyssey

by Lillian Doherty
     
 

ISBN-10: 0472105973

ISBN-13: 9780472105977

Pub. Date: 02/15/1996

Publisher: University of Michigan Press


In Siren Songs: Gender, Audiences, and Narrators in the Odyssey, Lillian Eileen Doherty shows us that the attitude of Odysseus, as well as of the Odyssey, is highly ambivalent toward women. Odysseus rewards supportive female characters by treating them as privileged members of the audience for his own tales. At the same time, dangerous female…  See more details below

Overview


In Siren Songs: Gender, Audiences, and Narrators in the Odyssey, Lillian Eileen Doherty shows us that the attitude of Odysseus, as well as of the Odyssey, is highly ambivalent toward women. Odysseus rewards supportive female characters by treating them as privileged members of the audience for his own tales. At the same time, dangerous female narrators--who threaten to disrupt or revise the hero's story--are discredited by the narrative framework in which their stories appear.

Siren Songs synthesizes audience-oriented and narratological approaches, and examines the relationships among three kinds of audiences: internal, implied, and actual. The author prefaces her own reading of the Odyssey with an analysis of the issues posed by the earlier feminist readings on which she builds. Should the Odyssey be read as a "closed" text, that is, as one whose meaning is highly determined, or as an "open" text whose contradictions and ambiguities undercut its overt meanings?

Siren Songs presents a feminist critique of the Odyssey in an accessible manner aimed at a more general audience. All Greek is translated, and critical terminology is clearly defined.

Lillian Eileen Doherty is Associate Professor of Classics, University of Maryland, College Park.

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780472105977
Publisher:
University of Michigan Press
Publication date:
02/15/1996
Pages:
232
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x (d)

Table of Contents

Metis and the Contest for Meaning1
Introduction: On Reading the Odyssey9
1Actual Audiences: Contemporary Critics and the "Penelope Question"31
2Internal Audiences65
3Implied Audiences87
4Internal Narrators, Female and Male127
5The Narrative Hierarchy161
6The Active Audience179
Appendix: Types of Formal Redundancy Found in the Odyssey195
Works Cited201
Index209

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