Finding Persephone: Women's Rituals in the Ancient Mediterranean
Drawing upon the latest research in gender studies, history of religion, feminism, ritual theory, performance, anthropology, archaeology, and art history, Finding Persephone investigates the ways in which the religious lives and ritual practices of women in Greek and Roman antiquity helped shape their social and civic identity. Barred from participating in many public arenas, women asserted their presence by performing rituals at festivals and presiding over rites associated with life passages and healing. The essays in this lively and timely volume reveal the central place of women in the religious and ritual practices of the societies of the ancient Mediterranean. Readers interested in religion, women's studies, and classical antiquity will find a unique exploration of the nature and character of women's autonomy within the religious sphere and a full account of women's agency in the public domain.
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Both types of Greek women performed important religious duties , and it should
perhaps not surprise us to find a representation of the hetaira's progress on a
vase once used in sacred rites . An important aspect perhaps the most important
While prostitution and deformity may have been considered outside the norms of
Greek society , hetairai had their own important deity ( Aphrodite ) , and dwarfs
served a significant symbolic function ( fertility ) . Sex and procreation were just
They may also occupy formal ritual roles that they then discharge either correctly
or to the detriment of themselves and others . What is important to note is the
range and variety of ritual practices imagined by dramatic texts . I would also go ...
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Sources and Methodology
THE SCANDAL OF WOMENS RITUAL
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