TERM 1SEPT 20: GREEKS AND GENDER : TRAGEDYSophacloes - Antigone-antigonepicks up in the same (uber-dismal) place thatOedipus atColonusleaves off. Oedipus has just passed away in Colonus, andAntigone and her sister decide to return to Thebes with the intention ofhelping their brothers, Eteocles and Polyneices, avoid a prophecy thatpredicts they will kill each other in a battle for the throne of Thebes.-But upon her arrival in Thebes, Antigone learns that both of her brothersare dead. Eteocles has been given a proper burial, but Creon, Antigone'suncle who has inherited the throne, has issued a royal edict banning theburial of Polyneices, who he believes was a traitor. Antigone defies thelaw, buries her brother, and is caught. When Creon locks her away inprison, she kills herself.-Meanwhile, not realizing Antigone has taken her own life, the blindprophet Teiresias, Creon's son and Antigone's fiancé Haemon, and theChorus plead with Creon to release her. Creon finally relents, but in aninstance of too-late-timing, finds her dead in her jail cell. Out of despair,Haemon and Creon’s wife have by now also killed themselves, and Creonis left in distress and sorrow.-Antigoneexplores a contrast between the behavior expected of womenand the reality of their role in society. Creon expects men to be theprimary actors in society and women to take a secondary andsubservient role. Opinionated Antigone challenges these notions as shetakes center stage and presents formidable challenges to the menaround her.Euripides - trojan women-The play begins with two gods,AthenaandPoseidon, descending fromthe heavens to discuss the aftermath of the war between the invadingGreek armies and the people of the city of Troy. Poseidon has supportedthe Trojans, whereas Athena has supported the Greeks. However, shehas now turned against them. The Greek warrior,Ajax, raped the TrojanprincessCassandrain Athena’s temple, which the goddess sees as an actof great disrespect. As a result, she has called on Poseidon, as well asZeus, to work with her to create stormy seas to punish the Greeks ontheir journey home.-The gods exit, and the mortal plot unfolds. The stage shows a ruinedwall, and in front of it a tent containing the recently enslaved women ofTroy.Hecuba, the former queen of Troy, laments the destruction of hercity, and the horrible treatment her family has endured. The Chorus,
made up of her former handmaidens and other noble Trojan women,joins her, and together they sing, wondering what will become of themand which Greeks will be their masters.-Talthybius, a Greek guard, enters and tries to inform Hecuba of the deathof her daughter, Polyxena. He uses euphemistic language, and Hecubadoes not initially understand what he is trying to say. He also announcesto the women that they will all be taken as slaves by different Greekmen, and so will have to leave their homeland essentially alone.