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Aeschylus and the Oresteia - Essay Example

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The play depicts a society that was initially guided by the traditional means of finding justice but with time they saw the need to come up with an informed way of reaching justice for those considered as criminals in the society…
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Aeschylus and the Oresteia
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"Aeschylus and the Oresteia"

Download file to see previous pages In order to clearly depict this play writer divided it into three elements including the society, courts and the norms of the society. In the play the characters insist on the need to suffer in order to obtain truth and justice in the society. This play depicts a society that has been living on misery for a long period of time especially during the Trojan War that brought with it a murderous house of Atreus1. The play depicts the continued violence that has been experienced in the country and at the end of it is women and children that are harmed. This is attributed to the fact that being a society that is driven mostly by the norms of the society, women are forced to be submissive in all aspects and events that happen in the society. They are left homeless, without food and psychologically tortured by the aftermath of the war. For instance in the play, Agamemnon had to sacrifice his daughter Iphigenia some ten years ago in order to advance his political interests. This depicts a society that views the female gender as a lesser being and one that has to suffer in order for the male gender to prosper. Orestes also killed his own mother in order to revenge against the killing of Iphigenia. The play therefore questions the intentions of the two characters when they decide to murder their close relatives in order to fulfill their personal interest This is a society that is strongly tied together by the belief in the different gods they have and do not have to go against what they say as it is valued as the absolute truth. For instance the two characters who murder their closer relatives attribute this to the requirements of their gods an issue that could not have been accepted by the legal setting of a country. Several symbols and metaphors are used in the play to depict the varying characters of both the society and the individuals in it. There is the use of the solar and lunar cycles, day and night and the storms. People who are not human in the society have been animated and are referred to as beasts in the play. Blood crimes are on the increase in the play an indication of how the society values the idea of shading blood as a form of sacrifice to their gods2. The sad part of the play is that those that are mostly killed are the women and children an indication of a society that suffers from a poor sexual orientation. There is a belief that blood has to be paid back with blood an indication of sacrifice and this makes them never to reach a decision between what is wrong and right. This resulted in a conflict between the new and old gods since with civilization people started to adopt a new form of religion in which they would worship only one supreme God. This is because primitive laws always demanded blood vengeance as a form of punishment yet this was not the case with the form of justice which insisted on the rule of law. This created a conflict of interests between the traditionalists and modernists and there was an increase in rates of murder and those that were mostly murdered were the modernists who adopted law as a form of justice. The play is therefore a product of the classical Greece in the sense that the writer went ahead to come up with the use of two characters in a play as opposed to the initial use of one character. This brought with it a richer interplay between the speech and action. Initially most of the plays had a main theme as one of tragedy but with time he began to shift his interests by writing on political standings and how they had an effect on the state. This was best depicted through the Oresteia play that combined a transition from a society that believed in bloodshed to one ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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