Study Questions for Lefkowitz's Women in
1.) What common assumption about Greek mythology does Lefkowitz challenge in chapter 5? Why?
2.) How does the historian Herodotus contrast Greek and barbarian views regarding the abduction of women?
3.) Under what circumstances did Greeks consider the abduction of a woman a serious crime? How are these circumstances different from the abductions of women by the Greek gods? Why is this distinction important to Lefkowitz?
4.) Why does Lefkowitz think that most women in Greek epic cooperated in their seduction?
5.) Summarize the myths of Polymele (pg. 57), of Tyro (pg. 58) and of Mestra (pg. 59). What, according to Lefkowitz, are the important features of their stories? What do their stories have in common?
6.) Use the story of Cimon (pg. 60) to show how human and divine males are bound by different standards of behavior in Greek society.
7.) Why do Greek gods typically visit mortal women only once and then abandon them? How does Lefkowitz explain this apparent irresponsiblity? (pg. 61)
8.) What does Lefkowitz think that Greek women were more afraid of than male sexuality? (pg. 63)
9.) What benefits does Lefkowitz see for women in their abduction by Greek gods? (pg. 65) Use Gre thinek myths to illustrate these benefits.
10.) How does Lefkowitz think that Greek and modern women would respond to the myth of Europa differently? (pp. 67-68)