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Laughing with MedusaClassical Myth and Feminist Thought$
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Vanda Zajko and Miriam Leonard

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780199237944

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199237944.001.0001

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Iphigeneia’s Wedding

Iphigeneia’s Wedding

(p.399) 16 Iphigeneia’s Wedding
Laughing with Medusa

Elizabeth Cook

Oxford University Press

This chapter presents a fictional account that gives expression to Iphigeneia's ambivalent reaction to her metamorphic body and her impending marriage to Achilles. Unlike most classical accounts of this myth that first depict Iphigeneia approaching her father at the scene of her sacrifice, the chapter begins the story in Mycaenae, where it is Iphigeneia's relationship with her mother Clytemnestra that predominates. Here, myth becomes a space ‘far from kingdoms, from caesars, from brawls, from the cravings of penis and sword’. In its potential for independence and creativity the autonomous space of myth becomes the contemporary ‘room of one's own’. When the call from her mother came, Iphigeneia felt something like guilt — a confusing, unclear emotion that was new to her. When she approached her mother, holding her head high as was her custom, she felt that she was imitating her usual stance.

Keywords:   Iphigeneia, marriage, Achilles, myth, metamorphic body, father, mother, Mycaenae

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