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Dionysus and the Unraveling of Ideologies from The Bacchae Essay

Assignment id 1001634
Discipline Self Improvement
Assignment type Essay
Words 2428
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Dionysus and the Unraveling of Ideologies in The Bacchae Some evaluations claim that the Dionysus emerging in The Bacchae is fairly true embodiment of those ideals of ancient Athens. He demands only worship and proper reverence for his title, two matters of honor that pervaded both the Greek tragedies and the pious society which watched them. In other plays, Oedipus' Efforts with Apollo and the many Choral allure to Zeus show the Athenian respect to their gods, even while Electra's need for revenge and Antigone's obligation to bury Polyneices both epitomize the themes of respect and dignity. Yet although Dionysus personifies both of these themes, his clashes with the remainder of Athenian tradition appear to make him its accurate adversary. Dionysius clearly articulates the typical views on sex, age, rationality and divinity, leaving the reader to ponder whether these contrasts were Euripidean efforts to illuminate certain facets of the culture itself. Examination of Dionysus's challenges ought to start with The Bacchae's most clear perversion of custom, the issue of gender. As Dionysus indicates early in the drama, the enraptured band of Bacchant followers is comprised only of females: "Every girl in Thebes-but the girls only- and that I snapped from house" (35-36). Although Cadmus further simplifies the issue by increasing the question, "Are we the only guys / who will dancing for Bacchus?" (195-196), that the text provides no definitive explanation for why Dionysus calls only on these girls. A superficial reading may indicate that Euripides tried to spell out the stereotypical "weaker sex" as the one "more vulnerable to invasive pursuits compared to guys, particularly eros and daemonic possession," but is probably at stake. Since Edith Hall.

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