Dangerous Voices: Women's Laments and Greek Literature by Gail Holst-Warhaft

By Gail Holst-Warhaft

In Dangerous Voices Holst-Warhaft investigates the ability and which means of the traditional lament, particularly women's mourning of the lifeless, and units out to find why laws used to be brought to scale down those laments in antiquity. An research of laments starting from New Guinea to Greece means that this primarily lady paintings shape gave girls enormous energy over the rituals of dying. The probability they posed to the Greek country brought on them to be appropriated through male writers together with the tragedians. Holst-Warhaft argues that the lack of the conventional lament in Greece and different international locations not just deprives ladies in their conventional keep watch over over the rituals of demise yet leaves all mourners impoverished.

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7 I would be more cautious than Herzfeld in stating just what a moirolói is and is not. In the region of southern Mani called Inner Mani, a region especially noted for its laments by Greeks themselves, the term moirolói is used for a much wider variety of material than in other regions. ’8 It is true that, apart from what are called ‘dancing songs’, heard at weddings or celebrations, laments have become the most common form of song in Mani. It is still common for men to sing laments as ‘table songs’ in the same way as Klephtic and Akritic ballads would be performed in other regions.

And half-brother Fitilianikos hung me over the cliff DANGEROUS VOICES 41 by a length of cheap string at Pounta on Makryna shore that cuts the boat ropes up. He left me to eat dry weeds and drink the brackish water. The widows’ songs support the findings of Danforth and Caraveli-Chaves concerning women’s dependence on family ties, particularly male family ties, for status, but I have some reservations about Danforth’s use of the term ‘marginalisation’. It presumes there is some centre field, occupied by men, on the periphery of which women live their lives.

When she arrived at Alika at Alika at Latoma she greeted no one. In the verses that follow, Ligorou’s brother-in-law, understanding from her strange behaviour that something is amiss, asks her for an explanation. She repeats word for word what she was told by the murderer of her brother. Then comes her cry for revenge, one that, by calling Yiannis’ honour into question, gives him little choice but to act: DANGEROUS VOICES 47 And Ligorou let out a shrill cry that made the place shudder all around —Did Vetoulas have no brother, did he have no first cousin?

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