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date: 21 October 2019

Abstract and Keywords

Hesiod’s famous misogyny is part of a larger “poetics of the powerless” that pervades his epics. The poetic persona of his epics establishes a hierarchy of gender as a defense against his own situation of powerlessness, as presented in the poem. Hesiod subtly challenges those with power, whether in the human or divine realms, and condescends to those below him in the hierarchy, whether female or male. The poet’s portrayal of men and women is therefore the expression of a desire to reduce the power difference between himself and those around him in both the mortal and immortal spheres. As a result, gender in Hesiod is not binary but has aspects coded as positive or negative along a spectrum based on how the individual figure fits into the cosmic power hierarchy.

Keywords: gender, Pandora, Muses, women, goddesses, power distance reduction tendency, misogyny

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