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Woman in Ancient Greece

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How would you handle being a woman back in Ancient Greece? Would you take being told what to do with no say? Well when Antigone can't stand it any longer she breaks the law and buries her brother. After Creon the King, also Antigone's uncle, finds out the treatment towards Antigone is harsh. A woman has stepped out of line, and now it is Creon's job to put her back in place where he believes women should be. In the play Antigone, Sophocles uses the acts of Creon and the other men present to portray Ancient Greek beliefs, and treatments towards women and how they were unfair, cruel, and inappropriate.

In Ancient Greece, things like sports, literature, politics, and philosophy were male domains. Men and women lived together, but the defined boundaries were often controlled by men. Most often, women were married off at a young age to men who were older than them. As a wife, women in ancient Greece had no status other than being the property of her husband. From the time they were born women were owned. They were first owned by their father, and then later by their husband. A woman was hardly given any education and she was considered inferior to men. A woman's primary use was to give birth and it ended there.

To begin with, women never had the same equalities as men did. They didn't own the same rights or weren't allowed to have a say in anything. Creon believed that women should stay in their place and not disobey the rules or laws. "Pride? In a slave?"(80) Here, Creon is insulting Antigone and calling her a slave. Even though Antigone is in the same royal family as Creon he still treats her as low as a slave just because she happens to be a woman. This goes to show that Creon doesn't care what position you are in or how related to anyone important you are. If you are of the female gender, you will get treated as nothing and you will have no say in anything ever. "If we must lose, let's lose to a woman at least!" (45) Here, Creon is speaking to Haimon about the pride of men. When he says this he is saying that women do not equal up to men and therefore, you need to lose to a man. Losing to a woman would leave a man embarrassed more than losing to another man.

However, it was not only men that thought women should stay in their place. Ismene always thought that women should stay in their place as told to do. "We are only women we cannot fight with men, Antigone!" (45) Here, Ismene is telling Antigone not to bury Polyneices because she is a woman and she would be going against Creon's law. Ismene believes that Antigone shouldn't do things against the law because that would be breaking a law that man had made and that would be rising against men which Ismene strongly disagrees with. "I must yield to those in authority. And I think it is a dangerous business to always be meddling." (50) Here, Ismene admits to always obeying the authority



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