CLA204H1 Lecture Notes - Lecture 10: Maenad, Thyrsus, Euripides

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Involves wine and intoxication, men and women together: communal dancing, engaging in some kind of trance; primal urges, afterwards, an experience of renewal, return to society, catharsis, id & ego: balance between social rules and uninhibitedness. In rare cases, rome did try to suppress, exclude the worship of certain gods: arrival of the bacchanalia in rome. Luckily, both the law itself and a historical account survive. Livy: bacchants arrived from a particularly ignoble strain of greeks: romans: viewed bacchanalia as (cid:272)o(cid:373)i(cid:374)g fro(cid:373) their o(cid:449)(cid:374) (cid:862)east,(cid:863) specifically greece, literally and figuratively oriental to rome. Livy: associates bacchant rites with murder, violence, chaos disorder and criminality; an excuse and camouflage for violence: assembly speech against the bacchanalia, the consul opens his speech with a solemn prayer to (cid:862)traditio(cid:374)al(cid:863) gods. Roman appropriation of other myths: isis rites be afraid of them and their rituals. Isis: egyptian goddess of motherhood, wifedom, magic, afterlife, resurrection: resurrected her husband osiris, who became king of the underworld.

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