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Historical Context: Greek Tragedy Let’s prepare to perform Antigone!

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Presentation on theme: "Historical Context: Greek Tragedy Let’s prepare to perform Antigone!"— Presentation transcript:

1 Historical Context: Greek Tragedy Let’s prepare to perform Antigone!

2 The Stage Three Main Portions of Greek Theatre: Skene – Portion of stage where actors performed (included 1-3 doors in and out) Orchestra – “Dancing Place” where chorus sang to the audience Theatron – Seating for audience

3 The Greek Amphitheater

4 The Stage

5

6 Actors in Greek Theater The main actors (playing multiple characters each) Chorus –12 or 15 choreutes (dancers) –trained to sing and dance from their youth

7 Who are the Actors? Must be a young man (women were not allowed to perform) Must be a young man (women were not allowed to perform) Must be a Greek citizen Must be a Greek citizen Must have some money or authority in society Must have some money or authority in society Must have the approval of the Honorable Archon Must have the approval of the Honorable Archon

8 Who is the Chorus? A group of actors/audience members that interject into the plot of the play A group of actors/audience members that interject into the plot of the play They speak in chorus and would usually have a drumbeat or musical interlude to accompany them They speak in chorus and would usually have a drumbeat or musical interlude to accompany them The chorus is there to help the audience consider different view points of the characters. They also pray to the Gods. (Remember this was a religious festival!) The chorus is there to help the audience consider different view points of the characters. They also pray to the Gods. (Remember this was a religious festival!) The chorus provides a review for the audience, offers prayers for the group, and helps the reader consider the different view points of the characters The chorus provides a review for the audience, offers prayers for the group, and helps the reader consider the different view points of the characters

9 Masks in Greek Theater Masks were used in Greek drama to portray character types or character emotions to the entire audience, which could be up to 20,000 people crowded onto a hillside. Masks were used in Greek drama to portray character types or character emotions to the entire audience, which could be up to 20,000 people crowded onto a hillside. These masks fit over the head, with a wig attached, and had large mouth openings so that speech would not be muffled. These masks fit over the head, with a wig attached, and had large mouth openings so that speech would not be muffled.

10 Masks in Greek Theater Prevented the audience from identifying the face of any actor with one specific character Prevented the audience from identifying the face of any actor with one specific character Allowed men to impersonate women without confusion Allowed men to impersonate women without confusion Helped the audience identify the sex, age, and social rank of the characters Helped the audience identify the sex, age, and social rank of the characters Were often changed by the actors when they would exit after an episode to assume a new role Were often changed by the actors when they would exit after an episode to assume a new role

11 Sophocles The so-called “Sophoclean heroes” include Oedipus and Creon.They dominate six of the plays of Sophocles that have survived through time. These characters are stubborn and strong willed. They pursue their own purposes and fashion their own identities. Athenians had traditionally identified themselves through family. Now that democratic society had begun to focus on the individual, citizens were compelled to define themselves through what their own actions.

12 Tragedy A drama or literary work in which the main character is brought to ruin or suffers extreme sorrow, especially as a consequence of a tragic flaw, moral weakness, or inability to cope with unfavorable circumstances

13 Parts of a Tragedy: Dramatic Irony A plot device in which the audience's or reader's knowledge of events or individuals surpasses that of the characters A plot device in which the audience's or reader's knowledge of events or individuals surpasses that of the characters When YOU know something the characters do NOT know When YOU know something the characters do NOT know Typically occurs as a part of the climax or turning point in the plot – Helps cause that moment of catharsis! Typically occurs as a part of the climax or turning point in the plot – Helps cause that moment of catharsis!

14 Parts of a Tragedy: Catharsis A release of emotional tension, as after an overwhelming experience, that restores or refreshes the spirit A release of emotional tension, as after an overwhelming experience, that restores or refreshes the spirit Aristotle says it is the effect of tragic drama on its audience Aristotle says it is the effect of tragic drama on its audience The moment after the main character makes a BIG decision The moment after the main character makes a BIG decision building  building  Building  BUILDING  Ahhhhhhhh

15 Parts of a Greek Tragedy: Stichomythia Dialogue in alternate lines, a form sometimes used in Classical Greek drama in which two characters alternate speaking single epigrammatic lines of verse Dialogue in alternate lines, a form sometimes used in Classical Greek drama in which two characters alternate speaking single epigrammatic lines of verse Often used as a means to show characters in vigorous contention or to heighten the emotional intensity of a scene Often used as a means to show characters in vigorous contention or to heighten the emotional intensity of a scene Characters may take turns voicing antithetical positions, or they may take up one another's words, suggesting other meanings or punning upon them Characters may take turns voicing antithetical positions, or they may take up one another's words, suggesting other meanings or punning upon them

16 Parts of a Tragedy: Deus ex Machina A God or Gods are introduced into a play to resolve the entanglements of the plot A God or Gods are introduced into a play to resolve the entanglements of the plot Found in Greek and Roman drama – You may remember this from Odyssey and Oedipus! Found in Greek and Roman drama – You may remember this from Odyssey and Oedipus! Do you remember the 12 Olympians? Let’s review... Do you remember the 12 Olympians? Let’s review...

17 12 Olympians

18 Gods Specific to Antigone Dionysus – God of Festivals and the Arts Dionysus – God of Festivals and the Arts Zeus – God of Gods Zeus – God of Gods Athena – Goddess of Wisdom Athena – Goddess of Wisdom Apollo – God of Light and Poetry Apollo – God of Light and Poetry Ares – God of War Ares – God of War Hades – God of the Underworld Hades – God of the Underworld

19 Parts of a Greek Tragedy: Pathos Greek meaning: suffering or feeling emotions Greek meaning: suffering or feeling emotions When a writer uses pathos s/he is... When a writer uses pathos s/he is... Appealing to the emotions of the audience in order to persuade Appealing to the emotions of the audience in order to persuade Choosing language that will affects the audience's emotional response Choosing language that will affects the audience's emotional response You use pathos too! If you don’t want to go to school how might you describe your “sickness” to your parents? Is it a mere cough? A sniffle? You use pathos too! If you don’t want to go to school how might you describe your “sickness” to your parents? Is it a mere cough? A sniffle?

20 Parts of a Greek Tragedy: Ethos Ethos is a Greek word meaning "character" that is used to describe the guiding beliefs or ideals that characterize a community, nation, or ideology. Ethos is a Greek word meaning "character" that is used to describe the guiding beliefs or ideals that characterize a community, nation, or ideology. When a writer uses ethos s/he is appealing to an audience’s character When a writer uses ethos s/he is appealing to an audience’s character Example: "If my age doesn’t convince you that my opinion matters, at least consider that I am your grandfather and I love you dearly." Example: "If my age doesn’t convince you that my opinion matters, at least consider that I am your grandfather and I love you dearly."

21 Parts of a Greek Tragedy: Logos  Logos is an appeal to logic, and is a way of persuading an audience by reason.  A writer tries to convince the reader that his or her point is valid because it’s logical  Example: "It’s a matter of common sense that people deserve to be treated equally. The Constitution calls it ‘self-evident.’ Why, then, should I have been denied a seat because of my disability?"

22 Parts of a Greek Tragedy: Characteristics of a Tragic Hero Character must be of noble/high stature 2. have a tragic flaw 3. face a downfall 4. experience enlightenment 5. ultimately die or be pretty close to it! Oedipus IS a tragic hero...How does he fit these characteristics?

23 Parts of a Greek Tragedy: Hubris Parts of a Greek Tragedy: Hubris A common fatal flaw TOO MUCH PRIDE; ARROGANCE audacityaudacity, bluster, brass, conceitedness, audacity, bluster, brass, conceitedness, bluster audacitybluster contemptuousness, disdainfulness, ego, egotism, gall, haughtiness, highhandedness, imperiousness, contemptuousness, disdainfulness, ego, egotism, gall, haughtiness, highhandedness, imperiousness, egogallegogall insolenceinsolence, loftiness, ostentation, pompous, insolence, loftiness, ostentation, pompous, insolence presumptionpresumption, pretension, priggishness, scornfulness, self-importance, self-love, smugness, superciliousness, swagger, vanity pretensionswaggervanity presumptionpretensionswaggervanity

24 Shall we review the Oedipus story? What do you remember? What do you remember?


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