Graduation Year


Date of Submission


Document Type

Open Access Senior Thesis

Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts



Second Department

Classical Studies

Reader 1

Ellen Ketels

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In the literary world, Homer’s Odyssey has served as a fundamental text in the Western canon. It was influential to great writers such as Virgil and Dante, along with being a significant influence in Ancient Greek religion. The subject of both mystery and celebration, Homer remains one of the most prominent authors in literary history. His work has received several interpretations over the years. This thesis takes a feminist and modern approach to the epic poem, focusing on Penelope as the protagonist of the epic and argues for her status as not just an equal partner for her husband, but a nobler hero using episodes from the text that display her possessing the prized characteristics of cunning, courage, and hospitality.