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Topics in Ancient Greek Literature

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An Analysis of Why It is Easier to Sympathize with Medea
‘While Jason and Medea both commit vile acts, we find it easier to sympathise with Medea.’ Do you agree? When people in conflict carry out heinous deeds, the varying degree to each of their wrongdoings make it difficult for others to decide who to pity. Commonly regarded as Euripides' greatest work, ‘Medea' is a powerful...
865 words
2 pages
An Analysis of the Passage The Funeral Oration of Pericles
The Funeral Oration of Pericles 1) The name of this passage is “The Funeral Oration of Pericles”. This passage was written down by the Greek historian Thucydides. However, his writing is merely a third person recording of a speech delivered by Pericles. Pericles was a central figure for Athenian politics from the Persian W...
915 words
3 pages
The Guilt in the Revenge of Medea and Infidelity of Jason in Euripides' Medea
Medea's revenge ultimately makes her far more guilty than Jason. Discuss. Penned in a time of legend and antiquity, Euripides’ meditation on ‘where love was once deepest a cancer spreads’ elucidates the self-serving infidelity and untempered vengeance of both Jason and Medea, respectively. Initially painted as a victimiz...
1,069 words
2 pages
The Decisions of Medea and Jason and Against the Unexpected Will of the Gods in Medea, a Play by Euripides
‘Euripides has no sympathy with appeals to the gods. He shows that humans choose their own course and then ask divinity to justify them.’ Do you agree? A fatal legacy anchored on ‘the unexpected’ will of the Gods, Euripides effectively demonstrates the decisions of both Medea, depicted as ‘no ordinary woman’, and Jason,...
1,066 words
2 pages
God's Role in The Republic and The Ion
He Will Always say No. Plato has been a famous philosopher for hundreds of years, and one clear stance he makes in several of his writings is that music is only an imitation of the real feeling or emotion. While given the test to locate a song that Plato would in fact condone, I believe even until today no song has been c...
709 words
4 pages
The Crossroad Between Legal and Moral Obligation in Sophocles' Antigone and Aeschylus' The Eumenides
In modern human society, there exists an unanswered question regarding the intersection between legal and moral obligation; That is, what is just and what are we legally bound by? Any legitimate attempt at answering this question calls for an analysis of sources of morality and law, whether derived from the authority of man...
1,695 words
7 pages
The Incorrect Use of the Terms Perepetia and Anagnorisis in the Play The Bacchae by Euripides
The Bacchae is a play written by Euripides with the god of wine, Dionysus, as the protagonist. The style of the play is much different than the style Aristotle mentions in the Poetics. In the Poetics, Aristotle uses the term perepeteia, which is reversal from good to bad or bad to good. He also uses the term anagnorisis, wh...
333 words
2 pages
The Suffering of the Characters in the Play Medea by Euripides
In Euripides Medea the reader sees multiple ways in which each character suffers. However there were different degrees of suffering for these characters. Some did not experience much pain for example Creon and his daughter. These two, although rarely seen, both lost their lives at the hand of Medea’s rage fed by Jason’s lus...
591 words
2 pages
The Debates and Controversies Related to the Greek Tragedy Antigone by Sophocles
Sophocles’ Greek tragedy, Antigone, instigates many controversial and moral debates when analyzing the motives and actions of both Antigone and Kreon. It is hard for the audience to distinguish which of these two characters is more “praiseworthy” than the other since the plot of the play is so dramatic and emotional. It is...
1,198 words
4 pages
The Manipulated Chronology in Oedipus Rex, a Play by Sophocles
Oedipus Rex Paragraphs Oedipus Rex is unique in its narrative as it is not told in a chronological order. Instead, the reader begins midway through the chronology with Oedipus as King dealing with the issues in Thebes, while later discovering events that occurred prior throughout the play. These include the prophecies told...
290 words
1 page
Aristophanes' Social Commentary on Men, Women and War in His Comedic Play Lysistrata
During the peak of Greek drama, numerous tragedies and comedies were written among playwrights. All had their own personal messages to send to the audience, commenting on politics, religion, gender, and more. Aristophanes', in his comedic play Lysistrata, uses humor, sex, and gender switching to make his own social commen...
873 words
3 pages
Vengeance in Orestes, a Play by Euripides
Stasimon from Orestes by Euripides ~ca. 408 BCE Euripides wrote an opera called Orestes, which is one of the first operas, (in our knowledge) and was written in 408 BCE. The opera recounts the story of Orestes, who kills his mother Clytaemnestra to avenge the death of his father, Agamemnon, and is pursued by the Furies fo...
450 words
2 pages
The Homeric Qualities of Agamemnon in Aeschylus' Play Trilogy Titled Oresteia
Agamemnon: A Homeric Hero? Agamemnon, the first play in Aeschylus’ trilogy of tragedies entitled the Oresteia, tells the tale of Agamemnon, king of Argos, and the events that transpired following his return from the Trojan War, most notably his gruesome death at the hands of his wife Clytaemestra and her lover Aegisthus, A...
395 words
2 pages
The Struggles of Diomedes and Pylaimenes in The Iliad and The Odyssey
The Diomedes Dilemma and Pylaimenes Paradox Homer’s Iliad tells the tale of how Achilleus, the all-powerful warrior of the Achaian army, turned the tides of the Trojan War following a dispute with Agamemnon, the king of Mycenae. While this story does not serve as a telling of the commencement or conclusion for this great w...
1,509 words
6 pages
Comparing the Contrasting Understandings of Politics of Aristotle and Plato
Whilst it is known that Aristotle was a student of Plato, the two have dissimilar understandings of politics. It is unsurprising that their views on the subject differ as throughout his lifetime, Aristotle was very adamant on confuting Plato’s philosophical theories with his own arguments (Burns, 2003: 74). The painting ‘Th...
2,478 words
8 pages
The Author's View on the Existence of Human Reality in the Allegory of the Cave, a Book by Plato
Allegory of the Cave Plato presented to the world a metaphor that is widely known as the “Allegory of the cave” or the “Myth of the Cave”. It’s Plato’s view on the existence of human reality. Imagine a group of people spending their entire life tied up living in a cave, facing only a wall. Their only source of entertainm...
903 words
3 pages
The Growing Adoration and Respect of Odysseus to His Father
Home Sweet Disaster In book 24, when Odysseus first lays eyes upon Laertes, his emotions take over and he immediately deliberates embracing his father. Since it has been almost twenty years from the time when he last saw him, he wants to assure him that he has returned back home and is ready to re-establish his authori...
471 words
2 pages
The Importance of Honor and Glory to Achilleus
Extraordinarily Ordinary Both the Greeks and Trojans had extraordinary warriors that were not only powerful and glorious, but overall, they were successful in that they used their power and glory for the benefit of a country. On the other hand, both armies had warriors who were rather ordinary, who lacked superior chara...
904 words
3 pages
The Influence of Power in Oedipus the King, a Play by Sophocles
Oedipus and Power In certain situations, making a sacrifice to show one's bravery and honesty is the best n decision one can make. In Oedipus the King written by Sophocles, the tragic hero displays a strong sense of bravery and power by the end of the play. He gains much respect from his following, and proves he is truthfu...
406 words
2 pages
Trying to Explain Tragedy in Oedipus the King, a Play by Sophocles
Sophocles’ Oedipus the King tells the tale of Oedipus, the King of Thebes, who became king by marrying the widow of the previous king, Laius. From Oedipus, I studied the passage from line 249 to line 322. In an effort to “make sense” of the passage, I was able to recognize inconsistencies between what Oedipus was saying and...
1,163 words
4 pages
A Theme Analysis of Antigone, a Play by Sophocles
Write an essay in which you agree or disagree that the theme of Antigone is "the tragedy of two downfalls, separate in nature…following one another as contrasting patterns" (para. 3). Do you think this theme is a means of resolving critical debate about the play or a way to evade having to choose between Antigone and Creon?...
519 words
2 pages
The Common Misconception on Lysistrata, a Play by Aristophanes
Lysistrata Thesis Paper In the play “Lysistrata”, it is often mistaken that due to the fact that it is a play written about powerful leading female characters, it is a feminist piece of work. This is a very common misconception as one would think that a play so centered around females would have feminist themes, yet in r...
946 words
3 pages
A Character Analysis of Helen of Troy in the Iliad, an Ancient Greek Epic Poem by Homer
Many Greek mythological characters have very defining traits, ones that stick with them through multiple books and are accounted for by multiple authors. However, this unified perspective is not shared when it comes to Helen of Troy. She is viewed by some as an inspirational woman, one who helps to break the boundaries pu...
879 words
3 pages
The Cost of a Good Life for Antigone in a Play by Sophocles
The Cost of a Good Life for Antigone It’s hard today to imagine a functional and peaceful world completely void of government. Central authority is present in all aspects of our everyday lives, regulating what we eat, learn, sell, and everything in between. Sophocles’ Antigone gives us a glance into a different time with d...
1,139 words
3 pages
An Analysis of Plato's Symposium Using Diotima's Arguments
Plato’s Symposium In Plato’s symposium, Diotima’s arguments are used to depict the concept of understanding how to love someone. During these arguments, Diotima depicts a young boy and his attraction to beautiful bodies, and his higher level of attraction to one body in particular. We then see the young boy progress to rec...
1,275 words
5 pages