Misogyny in Beowulf 12th Grade
Beowulf is the tale of an isolated hero and his quest for power and fame. Beowulf fights those horrific beings that no other warrior dares to face, and in return receives great praise and acclaim for his bravery. This literary work can be considered a detailed insight into a world dominated by masculinity. As a result, any positive representation of femininity is absent from the text. In Beowulf, an underlying misogynistic theme is evident in the lack of female characters, the objectification of women, and the dehumanization of the females that are mentioned in the epic.
The plot of Beowulf tends to centralize around males and their displays of masculine power and strength, and this bias results in a lack of strong female characters and little insight on femininity in the context of this story’s time period. Besides Grendel’s mother, the handful of women mentioned are wives of important men. Wealhtheow was one of these women briefly mentioned: “Hrothgar’s queen, observing the courtesies. / Adorned in her gold, she graciously saluted / the men in the hall” (lines 613-15). Unlike their significant others, these women aren’t described in great detail. The perspective of the story is slanted, and biased towards the male experience....
Join Now to View Premium Content
GradeSaver provides access to 1048 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 8142 literature essays, 2279 sample college application essays, 354 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.
Already a member? Log in