The Odyssey

what are some examples that show homer's depth of understanding of the female character?

Use some examples to evaluate the depth of homer's understanding of the female character

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Through the characters of Andromache and Hecuba, Homer establishes his understanding of the mourning of women as both wives and mothers, and the effects of war upon his female characters.

Homer's Helen;

Homer's depiction of Helen is the most interesting part of this section. Later Greek writers were content to heap hatred on Helen, blaming her for the Trojan War and depicting her as an empty-headed strumpet‹as in the Orestes of Euripides. But that characterization is a far cry from what we see here. Although Helen's decision to leave with Paris has been the cause of the Trojan War, now she seems full of regret for what she has done. Although Priam assures her that the war is the will of the gods, Helen is not convinced. She wishes that she had died, and sympathy for her is increased when Homer tells us that her brothers, for whom she searches among the ranks, are long dead. She realizes that the death and destruction around her have in part been her fault, and she tries to resist Aphrodite when Aphrodite lures her back to Paris' bed. Resistance to the goddess is futile; when Aphrodite threatens Helen, Helen fearfully complies. But Helen's self-loathing sticks with her. When she sees her husband Paris she greets him with contempt, and though he shrugs aside her insults, Homer does not show us her reaction to his defense of himself. Still, there are limits to Helen's change of heart. She ultimately lacks the initiative to kill herself or hand herself over to the Achaeans; Homer gives her personality and remorse, but he must stay within the confines of the myth. No peaceful solution is possible.