Revising Athena’s Rage: Cassandra and the Homeric Appropriation of Nostos

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Abstract

This article approaches the relationship between the Odyssey’s nostos and other Nostoi from the perspective of the epic’s treatment of Cassandra. In doing so, I emphasize two perspectives. First, rather than privileging either “lost” poems or our extant epic as primary in a “vertical” relationship, I assume a horizontal dynamic wherein the reconstructed poems and the Odyssey influenced each other. Second, I assume that, since little can be said with certainty about lost poems, references to other traditions attest primarily to the compositional methods and the poetics of our extant poem. After outlining the major narrative features of the story of Cassandra that were likely available to Homeric audiences, I argue that the suppression of her story in the Odyssey is both part of the epic’s strategy to celebrate Odysseus and Penelope and a feature of the enforcement of a male-dominated ideology.

Revising Athena’s Rage: Cassandra and the Homeric Appropriation of Nostos

in Yearbook of Ancient Greek Epic Online

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