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Medea relates a story about the power of love, which induces sacrifice as well as jealousy and feelings of revenge aroused by betrayal. Medea, the principal character, is a woman, who is so smitten by her love for Jason that she forsakes her family, country and people to live in "...the land of Corinth with her husband and children, where her exile found favour with the citizens to whose land she had come...."
Medea never even realizes the value of maintaining a strong bond with family and country till she is betrayed by Jason's marrying the daughter of Creon, the king of Corinth: "...and softly to herself bemoans her father dear, her country and her home, which she gave up to come hither with the man who now holds her in dishonour. She, poor lady, hath by sad experience learnt how good a thing it is never to quit one's…… [Read More]
Villianness, Victim, or Both?
Medea has emerged from ancient myth to become an archetype of the scorned woman who kills her own children to spite her husband, who must then suffer the fate of outliving them. The story itself is horrific, and yet it remains strangely fascinating, and into the mouth of its maniacal heroine many writers have given philosophies which were too subversive to be voiced in open discourse. Many Medea have been crafted, and though the story remains consistent in every version, there is a degree to which the spirit of the age -- or at least the artist -- regarding women, violence, deity, and self-will is solidified and embodied in the central character. This difference is clearly seen in the difference between the way that Seneca presented Medea in Rome and the way it had originally been presented on the Grecian stage by Euripides: to the…… [Read More]
This double standard is prominent in Medea, for example when Jason admits that it is normal for women to get very angry when their husband is being unfaithful, yet he expects Medea to forget about it. (Euripides, ln 908-910) This is yet another way in which Medea parallels the position of women in our society today who are also expected to keep their feelings hidden.
Medea has an inclination towards killing people as a way to solve problems. Long before killing her husband's wife or her own children, she had killed her own brother in order to escape a difficult situation. As a representation of all women in Greek culture, this is not an out of character action, for women throughout Greek mythology have been murderous. (Not that men in Greek stories are any less ready to slay another living creature!) Some may consider Medea to be evil because she…… [Read More]
Medea also uses her children by having them deliver poison in the disguise of gifts, as no one would expect the children to have ill intentions. The children present the gifts as a request to let them avoid banishment, but in reality the gifts have been sent not to aid the children's situation at all. Throughout the play Medea acts like a puppet-master using the children to get her goals accomplished without being detected. They are the perfect cover.
In addition to the children being used as a symbol, Euripides also harnesses the use of the sun as a symbol in Medea. The sun is a symbol of the "light" of reason and civilization, in a contrast to Medea's darkness and barbaric nature. Two sun gods, Apollo and Helios, are both used in Medea. "Apollo is the god of order, of art, of moderation and civilization. Helios, on the other…… [Read More]
Freudian theory believes that extreme suffering removes own from the tamed state which each individual resides within civilization, "Just as satisfaction of instinct spells happiness for us, so severe suffering caused us if the external world lets us starve, if it refuses to state our needs," (Freud 28). Medea is so affected by her suffering that she removes herself from everyday life, "She lies without food and gives herself up to suffering," (Euripides 2). In order to deal with her extreme pain, Medea chose to take back the authority which Jason and the King had originally stolen from her. Rather than fade away into exile, she took action in her own life to regain control, an act which is also seen in Freud's theories, "One may therefore hope to be freed from a part of one's sufferings by influencing the instinctual impulses," (Freud 28). She let loose her aggression and…… [Read More]
"As a female foreigner whose relationship with Jason was only formalized with the birth of the children, Medea would have been viewed as an irregular companion, and after Jason's betrothal to Glauce, she would be reduced to the status of concubine." (Guastella in Claus) This makes them a helpful tool in securing her bond to Jason.
Another means by which they can be useful props for Medea is when she sends them carrying poison to their new step-mother. Medea spends time with them to make and carry out plans to kill her enemies, but she does not spend time with them out of love. "Jason and Medea's two children function as her primary props, her greatest source of power." (Taggle)
Although the relationship is a focal point of Euripides' play, it is not a play about the relationship between mothers and children. The children are not complete characters in the…… [Read More]
The children are their mother's power in a very real sense. hen Medea must appeal to the best intentions of Creon, she presents the case of her poor unfortunate children that are no deserving of any punishment. It is through his pity for the children that Medea is able to remain for a time long enough to fulfill her plans to get revenge. Again, her children assist her when no one else could by taking the poisoned gifts to their step mother. Because the children are innocent, no one would suspect any foul play, unlike if Medea herself delivered these items. Many times all of Medea's plans are built on the assistance that her children will provide for her, and they offer their services to her without any hesitation. She has complete power over them because she is their mother, and at the same time they are able to provide…… [Read More]
Medea is even further in exile, however, because she is in a foreign land without any of her ancestors to guide her. Her husband has abandoned her for a new bride, and she is being exiled from this city. Medea has been left completely isolated, except for the companionship she is finding in the chorus she confides in. The spirit of womanhood remains with her, despite being left alone by all others.
FInally, Medea addresses the chorus with her plans for revenge. "If I find some way to punish Jason for these injustices, along with his bride and father, too, say nothing." (Euripides) In this moment, she gives warning that her wrath will fall upon those that have wronged her, but the women of the city do not wish to betray her. Similar to modern stories such as Andrea Yates (Ramsland) who told several people she intended to kill her…… [Read More]
Medea's Children: Revenge And Euthanasia
Over the course of Euripides' play Medea, the protagonist makes five truly significant speeches which seem to provide the outline for the plot. In these speeches Medea addresses the audience or the chorus of women, among whom she seeks a measure of justification and self-understanding. From the beginning her motivation and determination in destroying Jason's new family is obvious. However, her thoughts regarding the death of her own children seem to vacillate throughout the work. Over the course of these speeches, one sees the development of her revenge, the careful strategic outlay of her plans, and steady struggle between her maternal instincts, her womanly desire for revenge, and he desire to shelter her children from a harsh reality.
When we first see Medea enter the play, she is hysterical in grief. At that moment, she speaks of hating her children, saying "Children of a hateful…… [Read More]
Medea and Othello:
The protagonists Medea and Othello both suffer a crisis of identity. At once, they are privileged, respected members of their communities. As a result of decisions they make, and decisions made about them, they lose their power. Notably, these characters show some similarities and differences despite being written in different periods. hile Medea was written by Euripedes during the classical period and Othello written by Shakespeare during the romantic era, the two stories present tragedies that are similar and different in various aspects including story plots and settings. Medea and Othello are considered as stories of tragedy because of the fatal flaws in the characters of these individuals that contributed to their ruin.
Medea had lived together with Jason as husband and wife in Corinth after fleeing from Colchis, Medea's first homeland. The couple was forced to flee from Colchis after Medea betrayed King Aaetes and Iolcos…… [Read More]
Medea does not so much get help from outside as she makes her own aid, supernaturally. She uses magic to prepare the poisonous dress. She also uses magic to foretell a cure for Aegeus, so as to procure his promise of shelter when all is done. The crossing of the threshold is accomplished as she manages to convince Jason to take her two children and their poisonous gift into the inner sanctum of his new home. That her own husband should serve as the threshold guardian begins to portray the subtle way in which what (up until now) might look like a monomyth is about to take a gruesome turn away from anything which might be conceived as heroic. So the children, and with them symbolically Medea herself, enter into the very belly of the whale where they will confront Jason and his new wife. The first phase of the…… [Read More]
Though Medea has been repeatedly referred to as a 'witch' with magical powers, she being the niece of Circe, she is, first and foremost, a woman. She is as much a human being as anybody else, and at the same time, she is in the possession of Divine powers, and this is what helps her get out of Greece and out of her husband's life. (Theater eviews)
Medea has been compared and likened to Achilles, in that she helps her friends, like Aegeus, and harms her enemies, like Pelias. She is in fact likened to a Homeric Hero, and even a step further than that, because she in fact was responsible for the death of her closest friends, her children, when she murdered them in order to spite and wreak revenge upon her husband. Though Medea assumes monstrous proportions towards the end of the play, nowhere is it stated that…… [Read More]
Although appearing to act in cold blood, Medea is obviously driven by the irrational forces of her subconscious when he murders her children. On the one hand her act is a reaction towards the threat that a hostile society poses against her identity. On the other hand, he murder is a revenge against her husband's infidelity. The fact that Jason tries to lessen his own deed and make it seem but a reasonable thing that any woman 'with sense' should merely accept, points at the fact that he shamelessly pursues his own goals without considering the damage he does to the others: "Jason: Did you really think it right to kill them because of a marriage? Medea: Do you imagine that loss of love is a trivial grief for a woman? Jason: For a woman of sense, yes. But you find everything a disaster."(Euripides 1994, p. 396) Thus, it can…… [Read More]
Medea- a tragic heroine to Aristotle'
This paper is an illustration of the characteristics inherent to the protagonist in Plays of Euripides: Medea that was conceived in 431 C, as they collaborate to Aristotle's concept of tragedy and tragic protagonists
In order to effectively understand the topic of this paper, it is imperative that we first take a look at the character who is supposed to analyzed in the light of her fulfilling the criterion of that of a tragic heroine; Medea: the Wife of Jason, who has deserted her at the beginning of the play for the daughter of King Creon, subsequently creating a scenario that is prevalently tense and regretful, particularly in aspect of the effect that his departure to another wife has had on Medea. The occurrence of Medea's link to Jason as his wife comes about as the Argonauts, a group of Greek set under to…… [Read More]
Medea: A Woman Scorned
Only an extraordinary woman is capable of killing her own children, whether to save them from something worse or not. Euripides confronts ancient Greece with a woman who is exceptionally intelligent. And also angry because her husband has unfairly left her for a younger, more beautiful woman who can help him get ahead and "gain wealth and power" for himself and his sons. She helped him get the Golden Fleece, left her own country and family for his, killed her own brother in order to save him when they were on the ship, and bore him two sons. After all Medea has done for him, Jason reveals himself as weak and rather stupid, really, when he fails to appreciate Medea's sacrifices and the depth of her loyalty and passion for him. Her feelings about his abandonment begin with grief and suicidal thoughts: "That lightening from heaven…… [Read More]
play entitled Medea Euripides wished to make a political statement, which was that marriage could be used to forge political ties. He also wished to reveal the disadvantages that marriage to a barbarian brought upon an individual in ancient Greece. Barbarians were foreigners whom ancient Greeks were condescending towards because they considered them to be uncivilized. The character Medea was labeled a barbarian as Jason stated, "first, thou dwellest in Hellas, instead of thy barbarian land, and hast learnt what justice means and how to live by law, not by the dictates of brute force"(Euripides).
Medea had escaped from her homeland in order to be with Jason; a quote attributed to her confirms this," O. my father, my country, that I have left to my shame"(Euripides). hen Medea and her husband finally settled in Corinth, Jason began realizing how unpleasant life in exile was and how much of a burden…… [Read More]
Life was hard for women in Greece (or Corinth) as Medea notes in her 1st speech, when she calls upon the "white wolf of lightning to leap" and "burst" her and "cling to these breasts" like a baby. What is she saying? She wants to feed the wild forces of nature. This indicates that there is a great surge of power and rage in Medea -- and the reason, of course, is that her husband is casting her off. "Justice on earth is a name, not a fact," she says to the women who surround her. She has sacrificed all for Jason and now she is thrown aside as though she were worthless: this is the source of her complexity of feeling, which ranges from wrath to sorrow. From this speech, we can learn that life was not easy for women in Greece.
For foreigners it was no easier…… [Read More]
Calling herself an "ill-fated woman" (1251), Medea told reporters through an emissary that the very sight of the children reminded her of her sacrifices to Jason, and the uncovered plot that Creon and the princess were ready to "throw me out of this land and get away with it" (1358).
The trial promises to be lively, with the prosecution asking for the death penalty with all due prejudice. Defense will have its own challenges, guilt is apparent and admitted, it will remain to see the defense's skill in making the Judge and Jury believe that the circumstance surrounding the crime were sufficient to explain the act. When asked what he'd like to see happen to Medea, her attorney commented, "Has she not suffered enough. Has she not spent years of her life awaiting a husband, faithfully executing her duties to him and never straying. To find out that she was…… [Read More]
While barbarians mainly use actions to put across their thinking, Medea uses emotions and this makes it possible for viewers to come to appreciate her personality and her strength of will.
It is actually difficult to think of Medea as being a barbarian, in spite of her origins. The character appears to be perfectly able to think rationally and is, in contrast to other barbarians in the film, sensible with regard with other people's interests. It is not until the moment when she realizes that she has been betrayed that Medea comes to resort to returning to her origins. She takes on barbarian attitudes and she harshly reacts to anyone who stands in her way, virtually demonstrating that she can really be barbaric.
Medea has a series of concepts deep down inside her and this is actually what makes her unique. It is surely interesting to look at her from…… [Read More]
Today we are going to talk about the myth of Jason and Medea, and show how it has manifested in different ways in popular culture and the arts. The myth of Jason and Medea stretches back to ancient Greece, but this symbol-laden story has permeated the arts and culture since then. The story has it all: war, love, sex, death, and murder. There are innumerable different versions of the myth, but they all share some common elements in common. These elements include the portrayal of Medea as a strong and powerful woman; a real "woman to be reckoned with." Jason, who is the very same Jason as in the Argonauts and the Golden Fleece, is also a strong person but he happens to assume a subordinate role in his relationship with Medea. As we will see, Medea is the star of this myth. She remains the star of the…… [Read More]
killing of a child in real life has no symbolic meaning, no power other than that of an expression of evil and is, therefore, one of the worst acts a human, let alone a parent, can commit. In literature, however, the killing of children is symbolic of a diseased mind or of a diseased culture. Euripides' Medea kills her children, but she is a symbol of Mother Earth, of the Gods, and of nature all of which can exert, with no warning and no necessity of explanation, a death upon any or all of us. That which we are given can be taken away. The killing of a child in literature is, in some contexts, a symbolic reminder of the seeming arbitrariness of nature. While some critics interpret Medea as being a proactive population reducer, she can be rightly understood as a sick woman who, like the animals that eat…… [Read More]
omen in Ancient Tragedy and Comedy
Both the drama of Euripides' "Medea" and the comedy of Aristophanes' "Lysistrata" seem unique upon a level of even surface characterization, to even the most casual students of Classical Greek drama and culture. Both in are female-dominated plays that were produced by male-dominated societies and written by men. Both the drama and the comedy features strong women as their central protagonists, whom are depicted under extreme circumstances, in relatively positive lights. And both plays, despite their very different tones, also have an additional, unique feature in that they show 'the enemy' -- or the non-Greek or non-Athenian, in a fairly positive and humane fashion.
The sympathies of the viewer for female's plights are immediately arisen by Aristophanes from the first scene of "Lysistrata," as Cleonice, the friend of Lysistrata, and a common Athenian housewife states, regarding the lateness of the other women that frustrates…… [Read More]
As Jason states,"Twas not for the woman's sake I wedded the king's daughter, my present wife" (Euripides 547). This shows that he has no real regard for his new wife. He also goes on to describe how they will benefit from the marriage. In part, Jason is telling the truth. He has married to further his position. His lie to Medea is that he pretends he has done it for their family, when his only real concern is himself. This shows that Jason is driven and unscrupulous, focused on getting what he wants and willing to manipulate and wrong others to achieve his own needs. This difference in what they want from life is part of the reason that Jason is an adulterer and Charles is not. Jason's drive for success is the reason he is not faithful to Medea. Jason's focus exclusively on his own personal success also means…… [Read More]
Deborah is believed to have played a key role in public arena.
Even in the male dominant society of Israel, Deborah's orders were followed and people looked up to her for advice. In the position of a prophetess, she could give orders which were readily followed: "She sent for Barak...and said to him, 'The Lord, the God of Israel, commands you: "Go, take with you ten thousand men..."" Barak was not willing to go alone and wanted Deborah to accompany him. Deborah is an important figure in ancient Hebrew culture and it is through her that we can see how this culture allowed women to have some freedom in their restricted sphere.
The daughter of Jephthah was another prominent figure. She was also a judge who ruled Israel as she was a woman of strong faith. After her father promised Lord that if he won, he would offer "whatever comes…… [Read More]
Women of Ancient Greece: The Plays of Euripides
The plays of Euripides reveal how poorly women were viewed in ancient Greece. From Medea to Sthenoboea to Phaedra, Euripides' women cover a wide range of forms: the vengeful, jilted lover; the plotting wife; the incestuous, lustful mother. As Chong-Gossard points out, Euripides does not shy away from "tapping into men's anxieties and frightening them with Medeas and Phaedras...women keeping silent about their devious plots."[footnoteRef:1] If anything, Euripides plays serve to reinforce the notion that in a patriarchal society, a man can never let down his guard against a woman -- because, judging from the works of Euripides, women are some of the most treacherous beings to ever walk the face of the earth. This paper will show how female power was depicted so monstrously in the works of Euripides and what it meant to Greek viewers. [1: James Harvey Kim On…… [Read More]
Desire, Emotion, and Knowledge: Greek Society and Culture in the Classical Period (480-338 .C.)
Following the aftermath of Greeks' victory over Persians during 480-479 .C., Greek society has undergone rapid changes and revival in its political, economic, and cultural structures, called the Classical period of Greek society and culture. This period, 480-338 .C., is characterized by the emergence of new reforms in the society, such as the establishment of a new Athenian democratic government, the gradual assertion of women equal treatment in a patriarchal Greek society, and the flourishing of the arts through philosophy, literature, mathematics, and science.
Indeed, the Classical period is more appropriately described as a time wherein human potential and intelligence is at its highest. As Plato had stated, "Human behavior flows from three main sources: desire, emotion, knowledge." This statement from the Greek philosopher brings into lucidity the important works of literature that had…… [Read More]
Nietzsche's Twilight Of The Idols
Nietzsche mischaracterizes the Christian tradition when he states that "the Church fights passion by cutting it out." The Catholic Church has never dogmatically opposed passion, but it has opposed sin. Nietzsche is writing out of the naturalist, Romantic tradition. He is a believer in self-determination, of the will to power. He views natural instincts and natural desires as justified and in no need of Redemption. His conflict with the Church is that the Church views man as having a fallen human nature in need of redemption, which is offered through the Blood of Jesus Christ. Nietzsche rejects this view: he sees man in line with what Rousseau taught -- that what is natural is good. The Church, for example, preaches against lust because this is disordered passion. Ordered passion, according to the Church, would be sexual love between husband and wife. If one or the…… [Read More]
In or around the year 1325, an unknown German artist sculpted a dramatic scene central to the story of Christ: the moment at which ary laments the death of her only son. This poignant moment is known as "the pity," or pieta. The pieta scene was popularized toward the end of the thirteenth century, making the Roettgen pieta one of the earliest and most historically significant representations this particular moment of passion. The scene is one that would become pervasive in Christian art and iconography, and studies of pieta sculptures can serve as proxy studies of the evolution of Western art, and Christian-themed Western art in particular. At the time the Roettgen pieta was created, pieces like these were known in German as Andachtsbild, or images used for contemplation[footnoteRef:1]. These images were especially common in Germany during the late medieval and Romanesque periods.[footnoteRef:2] oreover, "as affective meditations increased…… [Read More]
Aristophanic invective against a rival dramatist: the fragment from the lost Lemnian omen included in Henderson's edition as number 382, attested to in two separate ancient sources (suggesting it was considered a particularly choice joke):
Because it is a pun made on the name of the tragedian Dorillus or Dorilaos -- we are not sure of the spelling, since none of his work survives and the pun in Aristophanes' fragment is the chief testimony to his work -- Henderson finds a novel solution for translating this untranslatable joke: "the women fence off their pussy shelleys" (Henderson 291). As a hint to the plot of the lost Lemnian women, the sense of sexual pleasure being deliberately withheld, as in Lysistrata, seems to adhere to this particular fragment: but indeed Martin (1987), in an important article on the use of the mythology of Lemnos and Lemnian women within Lysistrata, indicates that the…… [Read More]
The connection between the development of Athenian culture and the development of Athenian democracy was intimate. Culture and politics flowed together in Athens, as the philosophers (from Socrates to Aristotle), the playwrights (from Aeschylus to Euripides) and the statesmen (from Solon to Pericles) all played fundamental roles in shaping how both culture and democracy developed. The playwrights showed the importance of worship and of civic duty (Aristophanes in particularly emphasized the duty that Athenians had in civic matters) and Solon and Pericles were instrumental in laying the groundwork for and building up Athens' political framework. Plato meanwhile served a pivotal role by writing works addressing the role of government and each served to impact the other.
Aeschylus, Socrates and Euripides all present heroes and heroines differently. Euripides presents them most tragically and complexly: his Medea is a sympathetic yet monstrously revengeful woman who slays her children to get…… [Read More]
Pirandello's self-conscious use of the nature of theater and the way people play roles in the theater and in family life was considered revolutionary at the time. His title "Six Characters in Search of an Author" stressed the fact that the fourth wall between the audience and the actors was being broken down in the construct of the drama itself, not merely alluded to, as in a Shakespearean soliloquy or a 'play within a play device' and within a family at war traditional roles, like father/son, father/stepdaughter are broken down.
Yet as revolutionary as he may seem, Pirandello's difficult family dynamics always recalls ancient Greece and Shakespeare as much as modernism and postmodernism, as in its invocation of the Orestes cycle where there is deep hate and alienation woven within the traditional family structure, the complex family dynamic of Oedipus, and the child-parent tensions of Hamlet. In the "Orestes" trilogy,…… [Read More]
Instrument on the Web
What is a mezzo-soprano? (2011). Wise Geek. Retrieved April 1, 2011 at http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-a-mezzo-soprano.htm
his website provides a comprehensive definition of an operatic mezzo-soprano in musical and dramatic terms. A mezzo-soprano is a female singer whose vocal range lies between that of a soprano and alto. he ideal mezzo-soprano has a three-octave range, but when singing at the higher notes of her range she has a darker texture to her voice than a pure soprano. hree categories of mezzo voices exist: coloratura mezzos, lyrical mezzos who often sing the roles of young boys as well as soubrettes (second female leads), and dramatic mezzos who often take 'bad girl' roles such as Carmen.
Soprano, mezzo-soprano, and alto. (2011). My Opera. Retrieved April 1, 2011 at http://www.myoperas.com/habericerik.asp?id=31&baslik=Soprano, Mezzo-
Memorably, in the words of this website, mezzo-sopranos are often described as singing the roles of witches, britches and bitches. Witches…… [Read More]
Private armies and warlords support themselves with these crops -- an instance of exploiting (in fact, abusing) the environment to pay for war (Global esources, 2004).
Use of esources to Finance Conflict
Forest products are also often used to pay for conflicts. Timber requires little investment and can be converted to cash more cheaply than oil, which requires technology. Control over timber resources can shift the balance of power during a conflict and affect how long the conflict lasts. Underfunded armies, military, police, and rebel forces often finance themselves by cutting trees. Conflicts in Cambodia, Burma and Liberia have been funded with timber, and in each of those countries the wood produced more than 100 million dollars per year (Global esources, 2004).
Incompatible Uses Leading to Conflict
Use or misuse of resources can be very profitable on one hand but ruinous to another. For example, jurisdictional conflicts have heated up…… [Read More]
Step 3: Discuss the Precipitating Event
After relationship is recognized, the emphasis goes to the family insights of the condition, the sequence of proceedings leading up to the predicament, and the issue that started out the sequence of events (Graham-Bermann, S.A., 2002). Consultations inspect when and how the disaster happened, the causal conditions, and how the family endeavored to covenant with it.
Step 4: Assess Strengths and Needs
The Family valuation of strengths and needs start right after and the goes on throughout crisis intervention. The crisis worker will start to draws conclusions that will regard the family's needs and strengths that are related to the present disaster and, with the family, assesses the prospective for recovery (Edleson, J.L.,1999). Client strong suit are tapped in order to make self-esteem better, while also providing skills and energy that is for problem-solving.
Step 5: Formulate a Dynamic Explanation
This next step really…… [Read More]
Pocahontas Through the Ages
Robert Tilton's book, Pocahontas: The Evolution of a Narrative, is ultimately a story about a story. Tilton's study does not largely concern itself with the real life individual whom we have come to know as Pocahontas, nor the primary texts from the early seventeenth-century that documented the facts of her life as they originally occurred. In addition, Tilton does not engage in pointed discussion about the principle players involved in the famous rescue of John Smith, such as, the Powhatan people or key members of the Virginia plantation. He also side-steps the question of the historical authenticity of the rescue story -- a story that largely came into doubt amongst nineteenth-century critics and writers from the northern states who struggled to weaken the power of the mythic narrative being exploited by southerners, around the time of the Civil ar. The story of Pocahontas, Tilton argues, has…… [Read More]
Mourning Becomes Electra
It must have come as something of a shock for the original audience of Eugene O'Neill's Mourning Becomes Electra in 1931 to take their seats, open their programs, and discover that this extremely lengthy trilogy of plays does not actually contain a character named "Electra." This may seem like an obvious point, but it is one worth considering as we approach O'Neill's American analogue to the Oresteia of Aeschylus -- the title essentially gives away the plot. Yet this would have been precisely the case with the original audience in fifth century Athens for a Greek tragedy: they arrived already knowing the myth of Electra or Oedipus or Medea, and so therefore what was being witnessed was, in some sense, a ritual re-enactment rather than a plot-driven narrative. Even the rare Greek tragedy that does introduce surprise into its plot, like the Orestes of Euripides, does so…… [Read More]
Crucible and hat I Have Learned
Arthur Miller's The Crucible is a dramatic, engaging work that challenges the reader/viewer to see beneath the "black and white" dichotomy by which the world is simplistically characterized via such "venerable" institutions in America as the "right" and the "left," the "conservative" and the "liberal" establishment, and the "patriot" and the "traitor" conception. In this play, Miller brings to the fore the fact that there can be and often are conflicting motives within every single human heart, a phenomenon that colors the way people act, interact, think, speak, and -- yes -- betray. At the heart of The Crucible is a drama of sexual tension and spite -- a girlish revenge twisted into something much more heinous by the cruel paroxysms of a community going mad with suspicion, condemnation, and holier-than-thou syndrome. It is a play that reflects one of the sinister secrets of…… [Read More]
How could that be true when that child was left in the woods to die?
Oedipus is calmed, but he still sets out to solve the murder-mystery and punish the man who committed regicide. As more details come to the surface, however, Oedipus starts to get a bad feeling. The evidence indeed points to him: Laius, he learns, was slain at the same crossroads where Oedipus took the lives of a group of men. as Laius among them? Apparently so…as Oedipus also learns that he was the babe whom Jocasta and Laius abandoned -- and indeed has grown up to ruin the house by killing his father and marrying and having children with his mother Jocasta. Jocasta (sensing that this might be the case) had pleaded for Oedipus to halt the investigation, but determined to know the truth, Oedipus called the herdsman who found him tied to a tree to…… [Read More]