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CLA232H1 (202)
Lecture

Lecture 1

5 Pages
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Department
Classics
Course Code
CLA232H1
Professor
Victoria Wohl

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CLA232 Lecture 4 15:34
Talking about a play… Odyssey
Plays:
Characters could do things that normally patriotic citizens would never do
The point of being a citizen in Athens is about being part of a democracy
But for citizens going to the theatre they could imagine what it was like to act as an
individual
Lets say doing something really really awful would be the best thing you could do
for everybody else
So the play where the guys abandoned on an island with a broken leg..
What if disobeying the laws of the city will please the gods
So people can imagine themselves making these kinds of decisions that were
basically impossible otherwise
So theres a big element of the individual vs. the collective
Zeus plays a big role as a maintainer of order.. BUT when talking about tragedy
what god is important?
Dionysus
He is the god of madness and wine.. these are connected.. you get drunk you act
madly
Maenads crazy psycho women
God of theatre
Interesting that the theatre is where the opposite of Athenian action takes place..
while the god of theatre is kind of the opposite of a good Athenian he drinks wine
and gets drunk; his followers act nutty etc.
Apollo:
Associated with music he plays the llire, a very formal and structured instrument
God of archery poison arrows he shoots down on motherfuckers
Associated with the sun; twin sister with the moon
God of healing, of medicine putting things back in order
Back to the idea of prophecy..
Delphi is where you go to get an oracle from the pithaea
What you would do is make a sacrifice.. then a priest would go into the back, talk to
the pithaea, who would breathe in some gases and trip balls
So the Delphic oracle.. though there is no proof she went wrong.. obviously there
was error.. she was fucked up on hallucinogenics so her words were mixed and hard
to understand.. could have been VERY easy to misinterpret
Another way things could go wrong is if you hear what happens correctly and then
try to prevent it i.e. Oedipus leaving the city so he wont kill his father and bang his
mom.. this obvi comes back to bite him in the ass
www.notesolution.com
Oedipus the King (Oedipus Rex (Latin), Oedipus Tyrannus (Greek))
Similar to the modern day thriller.. you know whats going to happen DONT GO
INTO THE BASEMENT!!
Plays were performed in Athens
So Oedipus tries not to bang his wife.. then accidentally does, gets her pregnant, so
they try to expose the baby pinning its feet together shepherd finds it, gives the
child to the king and the queen of some place
They call him Oedipus (from the words swelling and foot)
One day he gets teased and finds out hes adopted
Delphic oracle whom he goes to says youre gonna kill your father and marry your
mother
Laius and Jocasta = his true parents Polybus and Moerpe = his adopted ones
One day walking to thebes he gets cracked with some dudes whip
In Thebes things arent going well cause the Sphinx has taken up residence.. asking
retarded riddles which Oedipus figures out and then the Sphinx kills itself
So they make Oedipus the king of Thebes.. and say marry the missing kings old wife
They have a shitload of kids.. then theres a plague
Why is there a plague on Thebes? There is blood guilt, king has been killed and no
one knows who did it.
Who is the first person to know that Oedipus killed his dad and marries his mother?
The blind Prophet Therysius
How does baby Oedipus end up in Corinth? He was supposed to be exposed,
shepherd takes pity on him, gives him to slave in Corinth, who gives him to king
Relationship between Oedpus and Jocasta? Oedipus and Antigone? Mother/wife,
father/brother
When you go to the theatre in the ancient world you dont go for suspense.. you
know whats going to happen so you go for dramatic irony.. you have this privileged
position of knowledge
This is a possibility within the theatre.. what if we as humans could have divine
knowledge
So.. once the play is over this experiment is over, things go back to the way the
should be
Another possibility is. What if the gods could be wrong.. through the play were
rooting for Oedipus to escape the oracle.. he truly believes he can do this
www.notesolution.com

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Description
CLA232 Lecture 4 15:34 Talking about a play Odyssey Plays: Characters could do things that normally patriotic citizens would never do The point of being a citizen in Athens is about being part of a democracy But for citizens going to the theatre they could imagine what it was like to act as an individual Lets say doing something really really awful would be the best thing you could do for everybody else So the play where the guys abandoned on an island with a broken leg.. What if disobeying the laws of the city will please the gods So people can imagine themselves making these kinds of decisions that were basically impossible otherwise So theres a big element of the individual vs. the collective Zeus plays a big role as a maintainer of order.. BUT when talking about tragedy what god is important? Dionysus He is the god of madness and wine.. these are connected.. you get drunk you act madly Maenads crazy psycho women God of theatre Interesting that the theatre is where the opposite of Athenian action takes place.. while the god of theatre is kind of the opposite of a good Athenian he drinks wine and gets drunk; his followers act nutty etc. Apollo: Associated with music he plays the llire, a very formal and structured instrument God of archery poison arrows he shoots down on motherfuckers Associated with the sun; twin sister with the moon God of healing, of medicine putting things back in order Back to the idea of prophecy.. Delphi is where you go to get an oracle from the pithaea What you would do is make a sacrifice.. then a priest would go into the back, talk to the pithaea, who would breathe in some gases and trip balls So the Delphic oracle.. though there is no proof she went wrong.. obviously there was error.. she was fucked up on hallucinogenics so her words were mixed and hard to understand.. could have been VERY easy to misinterpret Another way things could go wrong is if you hear what happens correctly and then try to prevent it i.e. Oedipus leaving the city so he wont kill his father and bang his mom.. this obvi comes back to bite him in the ass www.notesolution.com
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