The sea was omnipresent in many parts of ancient Western life, and Greek mythology is rich in tales of female gods or mortals assisting—or hindering—humans in their struggle with the sea. Atwood’s The Penelopiad (2005) is one of the most recent rewrites of Greek mythology to depart from a male-oriented perspective, as it tells the story of Homer’s epic from the perspective of Penelope. This article will analyse the literary representations of sea and water, as well as the relationship between women and the sea, through a stylistic analysis of sea- and water-related conceptual metaphors in The Penelopiad and its Italian translation by Margherita Crepax (2018). Atwood shares some of the contradictory view of classic symbolism, in which the sea is both a maternal symbol of creation and the boundary between life and death. However, she also redefines the traditional perspective through the use of anthropomorphism, which transforms water into a postfeminist metaphor that, rather than being empowering, critically highlights women’s current situation in society.

‘Water is our element’. Metaphors of the Sea and Water in Margaret Atwood’s The Penelopiad

Fois Eleonora
Primo
;
Virdis Daniela Francesca
Secondo
2022-01-01

Abstract

The sea was omnipresent in many parts of ancient Western life, and Greek mythology is rich in tales of female gods or mortals assisting—or hindering—humans in their struggle with the sea. Atwood’s The Penelopiad (2005) is one of the most recent rewrites of Greek mythology to depart from a male-oriented perspective, as it tells the story of Homer’s epic from the perspective of Penelope. This article will analyse the literary representations of sea and water, as well as the relationship between women and the sea, through a stylistic analysis of sea- and water-related conceptual metaphors in The Penelopiad and its Italian translation by Margherita Crepax (2018). Atwood shares some of the contradictory view of classic symbolism, in which the sea is both a maternal symbol of creation and the boundary between life and death. However, she also redefines the traditional perspective through the use of anthropomorphism, which transforms water into a postfeminist metaphor that, rather than being empowering, critically highlights women’s current situation in society.
Conceptual metaphor theory; Stylistics; Translation studies; Margaret Atwood; The Penelopiad
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11584/351639
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