CC 205 Lecture Notes - Lecture 18: Pentheus, Kamsa

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Mythology notes
Divinities as Deviants III An Ecstatic Divinity
AN Indian Trickster and Ecstatic: Krishna
- Avatar of Vishnu: the Mahabharata
- Kamsa; young krishnas birth and escape
- Childhood dangers: Putana, Sakata, Trinavarta
- Mischievous: thefts, eating dirt and revealing the universe
- Krishna and the Gopis (cowherds): stealing clothes, dancing, splitting off into several
o Krishna capable of changing his body to trick
- Trickery can preserve the cosmos
- Trickery can be associated with childish mischief or great heroism
- Trickery and ecstasy can go together
o Is krishnas ecstasy entertaining or just sexist and self-indulgent
Dionysus(god of vines)/Bacchus/Liber: a greek ecstatic
- Intoxication, ecstasy, rejecting, inhibitions, God of Fertility
o Creates reproduction
o Associated with vines (drunkenness)
Ariadne (his wife): Theseus, Naxos
- Birth: Cadmus, Semele, Hermes
- Outsider status: nymphs and wine, world travel, pirates
o Dionysus raised by nymphs and makes wine
o Not everyone recognizes Dionysus as a god
o Pirates adut Dioysus thikig he’s a hua prie that they a get oey fro
o Dionysus creates a bear on the ship and the pirates/sailors become dolphins
- Euripidess’ Bahae
o Dionysus makes Thebans manic
Makes people of thebes act like worshipers of Dionysus
Petheus’ defiae
Cuts dioysus’ hair
Dioysus’ play with petheus
Has pentheus dress up as a woman with a wig to spy on the woman
Agave and maenads kill pentheus
Realized she has killed her son
Dionysus holds family guilty
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o Dionysus usually a feminine god
If you offend or dishonor him he can be very violent or terrible
- Liber and Bacchus in Rome
- Ecstasy, drunkenness, and sexuality can be associated with fertility
- Repressing the desires to cut loose can recoil against you
o Denying your desires is a risk
o Is ecstasy therefore essential to human nature
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