Making “The Silence of the Girls” Heard


For centuries, works of literature featuring “brutish, macho sentiment” have passed down uncontested through generations. To see men as the ruler or the man in power was just viewed as “the way things naturally are.” However, novelist Pat Barker is working to tell those same stories from a woman’s point of view. The Silence of the Girls tells the story of Homer’s The Iliad from the perspective of a Trojan queen named Briseis who was given to Greek warrior Achilles as a trophy. At its heart, The Silence of the Girls explores the immortal power of stories and how women have often been left out of that remembrance. These works as a whole aim to ask why heroic poetry seems to always lack the heroine.


For Further Reading:

Check out this article for some awesome feminist literary critics to follow to add some pressing questions to your Twitter feed.


Discussion Question:

While in school, did you find most of the taught literary works to be centered around male protagonists? How can new works of literature representing women be introduced into academic curriculum?


Action Item:

Make a list of your favorite feminist novels and share it with a friend!



Read more on The Independent | Image: The Independent