{[ promptMessage ]}

Bookmark it

{[ promptMessage ]}

Lecture 18 - Cracks in the Heroic Code Sophocles Ajax Homer...

Info icon This preview shows pages 1–9. Sign up to view the full content.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Cracks in the Heroic Code: Sophocles’ Ajax 11/06/08
Image of page 1

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Homer and the Trojan War Symbiotic relationship: the war is famous because of the poet, but the poet is famous because of glorifying the war Homer’s epics – primary purpose is to glorify the heroes and their exploits in the Trojan war Homer portrays the war as a horrific but essential part of the heroes’ world The only way for heroes to acquire immortal glory ( kleos ) is to fight in the war AND be glorified in epic for fighting in the war
Image of page 2
Homer and the Heroic Code A set of unofficial rules/expectations by which the heroes live: 1. Glory is more important than anything else, and is tied to personal honor 2. One’s glory and honor are enhanced through excellence in battle AND through token prizes that recognize that excellence 3. Hand-to-hand combat is more honorable than archery, and results in more glory 4. Two types of activities in which the heroes should ideally excel: fighting and council 5. Appearance matters!
Image of page 3

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Potential Problems in Homer’s Heroic Code In its nature, the heroic code over-values individual accomplishment and selfishness anti-hoplite While the Greek heroes are fighting for individual glory, the Trojan heroes are mainly concerned about collective survival! All the heroes want to be the best, but there is only ONE who can be the best internal competition For Homeric heroes, their families and continuation of the line takes second place to pursuit of individual glory doomed to die out
Image of page 4
The Trojan War in Athenian Tragedy Tragedy zooms in on what doesn’t work in any given situation, rather than on what works Athenian tragedy highly political in nature, and focuses on events in Trojan war relevant to contemporary 5 th century Ath. politics Outright condemnation of war Portrays war as creating monsters and victims, rather than heroes reversal of Homer Shows suffering of heroes because of their adherence to the heroic code Shows the soldiers as not wanting to fight
Image of page 5

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Heroes of the Trojan War as Tragic Heroes Aeschylus – Memnon, Ajax, Odysseus, (each was subject of a trilogy), Agamemnon Sophocles – Ajax, Philoctetes, Ajax the Locrian Euripides – Rhesus, Philoctetes, Alexandros (Paris) Chaeremon (1 st half of 4 th century BC) – Achilles Slayer of Thersites
Image of page 6
Athenian Drama and Political Participation Athenian tragedy – attending tragic performance as much a political act or more so than voting or participating in the Assembly of citizens Layers of participation and connection to army: 1. Soldier-citizens in the audience 2. Soldier-citizen characters on the stage, being played by actual Athenian soldier-citizens, and using the same language that real Ath. soldier- citizens would have used 3. Temp. release from military service for chorus members
Image of page 7

Info icon This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.

View Full Document Right Arrow Icon
Athens in Athenian Tragedy Audiences identify best with characters/issues relevant to their lives necessity to update myths
Image of page 8
Image of page 9
This is the end of the preview. Sign up to access the rest of the document.

{[ snackBarMessage ]}

What students are saying

  • Left Quote Icon

    As a current student on this bumpy collegiate pathway, I stumbled upon Course Hero, where I can find study resources for nearly all my courses, get online help from tutors 24/7, and even share my old projects, papers, and lecture notes with other students.

    Student Picture

    Kiran Temple University Fox School of Business ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    I cannot even describe how much Course Hero helped me this summer. It’s truly become something I can always rely on and help me. In the end, I was not only able to survive summer classes, but I was able to thrive thanks to Course Hero.

    Student Picture

    Dana University of Pennsylvania ‘17, Course Hero Intern

  • Left Quote Icon

    The ability to access any university’s resources through Course Hero proved invaluable in my case. I was behind on Tulane coursework and actually used UCLA’s materials to help me move forward and get everything together on time.

    Student Picture

    Jill Tulane University ‘16, Course Hero Intern