Roles of Men and Women in Ancient Greece
Men had the dominant role in public life in ancient Greece. They were engaged in politics and public events, while women were often encouraged to stay in the home. When men entertained, their wives were not invited to the dinner. The Olympic Games were for males only, while in another part of Olympia, the women had a small event of their own in honor of Hera. In Athens, pale skin was in style for women, showing that they were wealthy enough to stay inside. Also in Athens, only the very poor woman was found at the agora without a male escort.
The sheltering of women was not as common in other Greek cities. For example, in Sparta, women had much more freedom and a larger role in society, but still secondary to men.