The gender roles of electra and clytemnestra in the play oresteia by aeschylus

Family[ edit ] Aegisthus was the son of Thyestes and Thyestes' own daughter Pelopiaan incestuous union motivated by his father's rivalry with the house of Atreus for the throne of Mycenae. Aegisthus murdered Atreus in order to restore his father to power, ruling jointly with him until only to be driven from power by Atreus' son Agamemnon.

The gender roles of electra and clytemnestra in the play oresteia by aeschylus

There are three plays: In his entourage comes Cassandra, the captive Trojan princess cursed with prophecy, whom Agamemnon plans to make his mistress. The people welcome him home, delighted to have their lord back with them after ten long years. But her love has curdled and withered into something entirely unforgiving, and now he must pay the price.

She slaughters him in his bath — kills Cassandra too — and displays their butchered bodies to the multitude. He has a blood-debt to exact from Agamemnon, as payment for a murder in the previous generation: That act sparked off a spiral of death and counter-death, a curse that hangs over the House of Atreus.

That curse is destined to be repeated again and again, blood upon blood, and so the second act begins. Once again kin kills kin: Orestes slaughters Clytemnestra and Aegisthus and the grisly tableau of dismembered limbs is repeated.

Kill and counter-kill: why does the Oresteia still slay them? | Stage | The Guardian

Pursued by the Furies, Orestes flees to Delphi where he begs for absolution from the Oracle. Apollo despite having advised this course of action to begin with finds the case a tricky one and refers it on to the wisdom of Athena.

Democracy, fairness and the justice of the people triumph over the blood-soaked vengeance of the individual. Presumably all the Athenians went home at the end brimming over with civic pride, but I found the third instalment the least compelling of the lot.

Here I felt Aeschylus had moved away from the psychological power of the earlier parts, and was simply trotting out propaganda saying how marvellous Athens was; but each to their own. I also find that very few plays or films work as well when the gods start appearing in the flesh.

Fagles argues that the Oresteia is about transitions: Here the Athenian law-court acquits Orestes, only for the Furies to rise in protest. They argue that Athena and Apollo are new gods, with no understanding of the correct order of things.

How can the Furies be denied their right to justice? They govern men by inspiring fear; they dissuade crime by promising the certainty of retribution; they represent the most ancient, darkest, deepest places of the human spirit. Apollo counters this with a rather misogynistic speech about the womb being merely an empty space; a shelter:An analysis of Clytemnestra's role in Aeschylus' "Oresteia." The paper provides a brief overview of the "Oresteia," a three part cycle of plays that include the Agamemnon, the Choephoroe and the Eumenides.

· Born in Eleusis, Greece, Aeschylus grew up in the Golden Age of Athens, and fought in the gender roles of electra and clytemnestra in the play oresteia by aeschylus the Battle of Marathon against invading Persian forces in BCE.

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He. Clytemnestra's character in Aeschylus' tragedy Agamemnon is portrayed as a strong willed woman. Later in the play after Clytemnestra murders her husband, Agamemnon, and his concubine, Cassandra, she reveals her driving force that has spurned all of her actions up to this point.

Aeschylus depicts Clytemnestra as 'an embodiment of all evil' in the trilogy However, alongside these important gender-issues in the play, the Agamemnon should be also considered from another highly significant perspective.

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When Libation Bearers begins, the conservative gender norms of the ancient Greek world have already been violated. Clytemnestra, a woman, is in power along with her new boy-toy, Aegisthus, who everybody thinks is a wimp because he stayed home from the war.

The gender roles of electra and clytemnestra in the play oresteia by aeschylus

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The Queen Ancient And Modern: Aeschylus' Clytemnestra | Sanna-Ilaria Kittelä -