Oedipus realizes that he has fulfilled his awful prophecy. Queen Jocasta kills herself and Oedipus, in a fit of grief, gouges out his own eyes. Blind and grief-stricken, Oedipus bemoans his fate. Creon, after consulting an oracle, grants Oedipus's request and banishes him from Thebes. Lysistrata Characters Lysistrata: A grand, intelligent, alluring woman, Lysistrata organizes a sex strike not only in her hometown of Athens but in Sparta as well, all in the hope that the men of Greece might peacefully end the bloody, costly Peloponnesian War. She is something of an idealist, and very witty. Scholars see in Lysistrata traces of two important Athenian figures: the priestess of Athena and the courtesan (mistress or upper-class prostitute). Lysistrata is not married, is seemingly less susceptible to erotic desire than the other Athenian women, and wisely works for Peace by masterfully manipulating the men around her. Indeed, Lysistrata practically directs the play of which she’s part: the Athenian women obey her orders, and the men can’t help but react to her plot in the way she wants them to. By the play’s end, of course, the men who earlier denounced Lysistrata as a rebel celebrate her as the most excellent of women, a true peace-bringer. Kleonike: The fun-loving Athenian woman Kleonike is the first to respond to her neighbor Lysistrata ’s summons at the beginning of the play. However, Kleonike conforms more to Athenian gender stereotypes than her neighbor does. She loves soft, fancy garments, and she would rather walk through fire than abstain from having sex. She even slanders her own sex as being superficial, lazy, and unwise. That being said, once she joins Lysistrata’s cause Kleonike proves herself to be sharp-tongued and fierce: she serves as the women’s spokesperson when they swear their Oath to abstain from sex, and she wields a chamber pot in the fight against the Athenian police.
Myrrhine: The conventional Athenian woman Myrrhine arrives guiltily late to Lysistrata ’s summons at the beginning of the play, but once there she promises to do anything to end the war, even to cut herself in half like a mackerel—but then she immediately cries out “On with the War!” when asked to abstain from sex. Lysistrata soon persuades Myrrhine to take part in the sex strike, however, and indeed Myrrhine goes on to support the cause by fiercely wielding a blazing lamp against the Athenian police. Toward the end of the play, the fate of Lysistrata’s plot practically rests in Myrrhine’s hands, as she takes the most active role yet in seducing her husband Kinesias and then denying him satisfaction. The Chorus of Old Women: In Greek drama, a chorus is a homogenous, synchronized group of actors that typically comments on the action of the play and models the ideal audience response in speech, song, and dance; their leader and spokesperson is called a “Koryphaios.” It was usually traditional to only have one Chorus in a play, but in Lysistrata there are two, and both Choruses directly participate in the action of the play. The fierce, no-nonsense Chorus of Old
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