NPR

Homer's 'Unwilling' Women Are No Longer Quiet In 'The Silence Of The Girls'

Told from the perspective of Achilles' concubine, Briseis, Pat Barker's The Silence Of The Girls brings new life to the women of Homer's Iliad.
Source: Cameron Pollack

"Great Achilles. Brilliant Achilles, shining Achilles, godlike Achilles ... How the epithets pile up," begins The Silence of the Girls, Pat Barker's tart retelling of the Iliad from the perspective of Achilles' concubine, Briseis.

"We never called him any of those things," she continues, "we called him 'the butcher.'"

In the , the men are superlative. They insist on their own magnificence, even in defeat.

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from NPR

NPR2 min read
Robert Smith Pledges To Pay Off Student Loans For Morehouse College's Class of 2019
The billionaire founder of investment firm Vista Equity Partners made the surprise announcement in front of roughly 400 students while delivering the college's commencement address on Sunday.
NPR3 min read
'There's Something About Sweetie' — Something Irrepressibly Joyous
Sandhya Menon's followup to her hit young adult novel When Dimple Met Rishi follows a young woman with a big voice, a big personality — and to her family's dismay (though not her own), a big body.
NPR2 min readPolitics
President Trump's Golf Scores Hacked On U.S. Golf Association Account
The awful scores of 101, 100, 108 and 102 were posted to Trump's USGA-administered handicap system on Friday, according to Golfweek.