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Study Questions

Helen Questions

Bring on the tough stuff - there’s not just one right answer.
  1. What point of view does the poem take on Greece's hatred of Helen? How can you tell? 
  2. Do we ever hear Helen's perspective on her situation? If so, how does she feel about being blamed for the Trojan War?
  3. How does Helen's gender affect her situation? Is it possible to imagine a poem about a male Helen starting a war? How come no one's writing poems that blame Paris, for example?
  4. What are the effects of the poem's blazon form? What type of picture do we get of Helen through this form? 
  5. How would you describe the poem's formal features? What is the effect of all of the poem's sonic repetitions?
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