1Name:Course:University:Lecturer:Date:                          Analysis of Agamemnon written by Aeschylus                ...
2through tormenting them by irreversible curses. In this case a person is not punished by humanlaws, the gods do the task....
3violence. They are therefore feared and honored just as Artemis because they are concerned withjustice in the society.   ...
4which all this were meant only to be done by men. From the Men’s Chorus Helen andClytaemnestra are depicted as creatures ...
5given a chance to make a decision between giving wind to his men and saving his daughterslife ,he respects his men more a...
6change there is bound to be losers and winners but the losers are contented for the good of thegreater society (Slayford-...
7“I swept from these halls/the murder,” it is enough evidence for her belief, According to her, themurders of Agamemnon an...
8                                          ReferenceAeschylus,. May, P & Easterling, P. (2004). Aeschylus: Agamemnon (Camb...
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Harvard style course work analysis of agamemnon written by aeschylus

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Harvard style course work analysis of agamemnon written by aeschylus

  1. 1. 1Name:Course:University:Lecturer:Date: Analysis of Agamemnon written by Aeschylus Introduction The themes in this play are centered on the argument which stipulates human minds invery violent and problematic aspects due the following; the lust for power and the violent actsassociated with it, the chauvinistic clash male against female dominance, crime and its penalty,sensation versus motive; tribal alienation versus democratic idealism; contamination andpurification. These have been emphasized because of their prevalence in the family set-up. The center point is Apollo puts a curse on prophetess Cassandra for refusing to give her ahand in marriage, she willingly accepts the responsibility for the outcomes of Apollo’s curse(Fagles, 2010). Prophetess Cassandra had entered into an agreement that required him to give hergift to prophesize in return for her; however after getting the power to prophesize she did fulfillher promise which prompts Apollo to punish her. This is enough evidence of arrogance defianceto a god by women. Historically Historically, there are political issues that involve leaders, wars, and maintenance of lawand order. The Furies plays the judicial role by punishing those involved in terrible crimes
  2. 2. 2through tormenting them by irreversible curses. In this case a person is not punished by humanlaws, the gods do the task. Through the Chorus the Greek soldiers are warned of the possiblepunishment for being too much violent on Troy because that shows lawlessness. Apollo with his powers can not save the prophetess Cassandra from the eminent murderthreat from Clytaemnestra, therefore she is very upset. She was cursed to see future events butshe can not have control over them. The power of the gods is evident when Agamemnon andprophetess Cassandra are pronounced to death but no human powers are able to change. Clytaemnestra torments Agamemnon by cleverly convincing him to walk across the redcarpet an act which is signifies his demand for recognition of the role she played in the Greekvictory. This is an offence to the gods. As with Cassandra, Clytaemnestra believes in the ideasthat justice is best achieved through revenge "An eye for an eye," she believes that more murdercan be a possible cleansing for the sins caused by the earlier murders (Wilson, 2010). Politically The play fits into its time politically by carefully a portraying a pattern in change wherethat it is still possible for the less powerful class of the society to continue to play their normalroles in the society. This play is an avenue through which the Athenians to are able to understandrecent political changes and be able to understand them (Aeschylus Et al. 2004). This pattern ofchange shows the drastic changes that are left behind by various that the people leave after them.This is evident when Athena persuades Furies to give up their violent pursuit of Orestes forrevenge of killing his mother. Furies are therefore helping maintain the cosmic order by enforcing laws that the fatherof gods and men administer hence they are not viewed as being anarchic and primitive spirits of
  3. 3. 3violence. They are therefore feared and honored just as Artemis because they are concerned withjustice in the society. The play also fits into its time politically as it was written a time when tragedy was anorder of the day in ancient Greeks politics especially when it was under tyrant Pisistratus henceplaywright had to restructure their contents to portray the state of the politics of the time. InOresteia drama therefore was used to magnify political issues of the time by embedding to thetradition of the Athenians. The habit of arrogance is termed as a crime that has the consequences of a heavypunishment. The old men had a tough warning that being excessive and full of pride. Paris didn’thit to this advice and therefore became guilty because he arrogantly caused violence toMenelaus’ trust, more worse he proceeded to kidnap Helen, Menalaus’ wife. This act led toterrible suffering though his own death and the subsequent destruction of his city and lineage. Sociologically The play fits it its time in that it describes an era when women could be seen to takeleadership role sin the society and the author portrays women as being strong and powerful justas men are, for example Clytaemestra rules Argos while his husband is away in try and alsomanages to connive him to walk on the red carpet despite the fact that is only meant for gods. Clytaemnestra is a woman who exhibits the behaviour of a man despite the fact that she isof a weaker gender, this caused the Chorus of Elders to be upset. She performs different tasksthat women were not supposed to do, for instance she is a murderer and his mannerisms wereweird because he could talk back them, she even goes to the extent of admiring to be the ruler ofArgos (Slayford-Wei, 2010). However she did every thing what was not supposed to be done byother women, she was a murder, she was talking back to men and she wanted to rule Argos
  4. 4. 4which all this were meant only to be done by men. From the Men’s Chorus Helen andClytaemnestra are depicted as creatures that are extremely evil because they bring destructionand wreck to the ways of men. The belief by Cassandra is that women should have respect for their husbands and alwaystry being good wives. She doesn’t believe that Clytaemnestra has the right to brutally murder herhusband, although Clytaemnestra is angry because of the death of Iphigenia. Cassandra is sodisgusted that she compares Clytaemnestra to a very hideous animal. The Chorus of old menclearly ignores her warnings but she is confident of what will happen she therefore chooses toremain calm with a passive acceptance of her death. The Chorus of men is in disbelief of the fact that a woman like Clytaemnestra couldactually dare to perform such an act of murder because of her woman wood. Clytaemnestra daresthem by proving her animosity as she proudly explains to them how she performed this violentact with her own bloody hands. In their response, they say that she will be crushed to death bythe “bitter feeling” of men, this is partly due to the fact that the deadly crime was committed by amere creature which is a woman. Spiritually The author argues that there is a thin line between humans and beast and thus allowshuman to transform to beasts to try and show that the people that leaved at that time were as inhuman as beast would be fro instance the wife of the king who eagerly anticipate to the return ofhis husband so that he would murder him and continue ruling (Wilson, 2010). This is furtherclarified when she finally hideously murders his husband upon his return from Troy. Athenians at the time of Agamemnon showed little or no loyalty to their women andmostly never involved them in the making of family decisions. For stance when Agamemnon is
  5. 5. 5given a chance to make a decision between giving wind to his men and saving his daughterslife ,he respects his men more and even goes ahead to sacrifice his own daughter withoutconsulting his wife, Clytaemnestra. The elders in the chorus are fast to blames Helen for what has befall Argos had termedher to a typical woman who causes trouble and the one who caused the Trojan war. They are notready to pass the blame to the man who kidnapped her simply because he is a man and she has totake the blame because she is a woman. More so the king Agamemnon blames Helen for all the deaths that resulted from theetojan war. The Chorus shows high respect for the gods by fearing beings such as the goddessArtemis. The gods as are very powerful, Goddess Artemis at one point demands for Agamemnonto make his daughter a sacrifice in order for the Greek ships to sail to Troy. The old men maketheir appeal for help from Zeus (gods’ king) and Artemis brother Apollo. Apollo with his powers can not save the prophetess Cassandra from the eminent murderthreat from Clytaemnestra, therefore she is very upset. She was cursed to see future events butshe can not have control over them. The power of the gods is evident when Agamemnon andprophetess Cassandra are pronounced to death but no human powers are able to change. Clytaemnestra torments Agamemnon by cleverly convincing him to walk across the redcarpet, an act which is signifies his demand for recognition of the role she played in the Greekvictory. This is an offence to the gods. Philosophically The play indicates that Athenians respected their older gods even after they have beenoverthrown by the younger gods. This is shown by the appearance of the Cronos in the Oresteiadespite the fact that it was no longer worshiped. This play therefore insist that when there is
  6. 6. 6change there is bound to be losers and winners but the losers are contented for the good of thegreater society (Slayford-Wei, 2010). The play shows that Athenians believed in existence and inheritance of curses. This isevident in the adage ‘sins of the father are visited upon the son’. Aegusthus’ father evokes acurse to Atreus his Son, when he was fed on the butchered children.Also Athenians had the thinking of ‘violence begets violence’ meaning that revenge was seen asthe only normal and right way of avenging against once defaulter. An eye for an eye was the wayto societal justice. Agamemnon avoids being perceived as unmanly due to the excessive obedience towomanly wishes. He therefore distrusts her because of her attempts to use womanly ways inconvincing him. He tries to imply that women are typically manipulative creatures howeverClytaemnestra shows her prevalence over this man when he willingly to walks on a red carpet.She holds really power over men, her husband also included. Towards the end of the story, there is role reversing between men and women,Clytaemnestra, remains as the only woman in charge; she bosses to Aegisthus and the Chorus asthe only male characters around her, these two characters acts like women despite the fact thatthey represent men (Slayford-Wei, (2010). The chorus of men was initially disrespective to her;Clytaemnestra can now belittle all male characters. Therefore, the Greek society questions thereversal of roles and its effects to the men’s position. Clytaemnestra behavior is typically that of a man, this upsets the Chorus of Elders. Bydoing everything in a manly manner she believes that she has finally delivered justice to Argos,she manages to end the curse of bloodshed that had been in force for several years. In the chorus
  7. 7. 7“I swept from these halls/the murder,” it is enough evidence for her belief, According to her, themurders of Agamemnon and Cassandra marks the erasure of previous generations’ bloodshed.
  8. 8. 8 ReferenceAeschylus,. May, P & Easterling, P. (2004). Aeschylus: Agamemnon (Cambridge Translations from Greek Drama). Cambridge: Cambridge University PressFagles, R. (2010). Review: "Agamemnon" from "The Oresteia" By Aeschylus. Retrieved on November 27 2010 from http://lonebearimagesprose.blogspot.com/2010/09/review- agamemnon-from-oresteia-by.htmlSlayford-Wei, L. (2010). Literary analysis: Oresteia, by Aeschylus. Retrieved on November 27 2010 from http://www.helium.com/items/1447180-the-significance-of-the-oresteia-an- analysis-of-the-oresteiaSlayford-Wei, L. (2010). Religion and politics in Aeschylus Oresteia. Retrieved on November 27 2010 from http://www.helium.com/items/1501318-Classical-Lit-MythologyWilson, W. (2010). Aeschylus Agamemnon. Retrieved on November 27 2010 from http://www.users.globalnet.co.uk/~loxias/agamemnon.htm

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