Dramatic Techniques In Lysistrata Essay

Chioma Mogbo Lysistrata — Formal Essay Assignment “I don’t intentionally go: ‘Ooh, what is provocative,’ and try to do that. I just do stuff, and people go: ‘Ooh, that’s provocative. ‘ Maybe because sometimes I’m super-ignorant – and sometimes they’re super-ignorant. ” This quote by Mathangi “Maya” Arulpragasam conveys the same reaction that the reader feels as one reads Lysistrata. Lysistrata comes with many sexual innuendos. It also goes particularly beyond innuendo where numerous male characters walk around on stage with visible, giant, and erect peni.

In Lysistrata, Aristophanes uses the Aristotle elements of character, language, and plot to effectively communicate that the women of Greece feel so sick and tired of the enduring Peloponnesian War that they decline sex with their husbands. In Lysistrata, Aristophanes uses language such as double entendres and metaphors to effectively communicate the overall meaning of Lysistrata. Although language in this play could be left up to the decision of the reader rather than Aristophanes due to lots of double entendres, the double entendres and metaphors in this play fit sound with its plot.

For instance, the opening scene in the Acropolis when Lysistrata introduces her plan, involves Lysistrata and Calonice conversing “it”, which refers to either Lysistrata’s plan or something a bit more tenacious. Calonice asks: “Is it a big/ thing? ” (19-20). Lysistrata then replies saying: “a very big thing” (21). Calonice then asks: “Big and meaty, you mean? ” (22). Lysistrata then states: ‘Very big and very meaty” (23).

By using this extended metaphor, Aristophanes shows that the defiant women have keen and witty personalities due to the bawdy double ntendres in this dialogue. Also, this interchange sets up the rest of the play, which remains also full of double entendres yet handles the important subjects of warfare and peacetime. Aristophanes successfully makes the language of the play augmented by incorporating a range of artistic devices appropriate to the numerous fragments of the play. Throughout the opening scene of Lysistrata, Aristophanes presents entertaining content through the use of female characters.

Just as the language mirrors the theme of the play. so does character progression support the action that occurs within it. The main character, Lysistrata, shows concern: “Sorry, Calonice, but I’m furious. I’m really dis- / appointed in womankind. All our husbands think we’re such / clever villians —” (10-12). These lines, spoken by Lysistrata is to her friend Calonice who responds “Well, aren’t we? ” (13) at the beginning of the play, set the scene for the action that trails.

Women, as represented by Calonice, have cunning debauchee-type personalities in need of firm leadership and course. Lysistrata; however, has a large sense of individual and social accountability and this is shown when she “called a meeting to discuss a / very major matter, and they’re [the women] all still fast asleep! ” (14-15). After she confides into Calonice, the women begin to arrive. Due to her lines and the way that her followers believe in, and attend to her orders, the reader is fully aware of her witty and charismatic personality.

Furthermore, she always keeps her final goal in mind, going so far as to test the Magistrate: “Listen, then – and try and keep those hands of / yours under control” (503-04). Still, Lysistrata does not exists as the only well-developed character. The choruses of men and women also serve an important purpose as they function as symbols of their sexes and keep the conflict stable. For instance, when the chorus of men learn that the women have seized the Acropolis, they hurry to set the place ablaze and smolder the women out.

Not far behind; however, exists the chorus of women, who quickly suppress the fire by dousing water on it. Also, neither the men nor the women in the play sense negation of morals. When Cinesias walks around with a quite aching erection, he does not settle for any woman to discharge him; instead, he hunts meticulously for his wife: “Then, for the gods sake, ask Myrrhine to come out / to me” (850-51). Because none of the characters feel callous nor negated of any moral volume, they appear more lifelike and; therefore, contribute to the play’s credibility.

All of the above elements underwrite, to a degree, the plot of the play. Lysistrata stands rationally sound. It begins with a meeting, grows into a proposal which is then instigated, and at the end, “it’s all happily settled… man… and wife… have a dance of thanksgiving” (1273-76). There exists no redundant scenes that do not contribute to the total effect. Indeed, the sporadic scenes serve to amplify the uncertainty and demonstrate how Lysistrata’s plan works.

For example, the scene between Myrrhine and Cinesias shows how desperate the men have grown for sex and how wily, ingenious, and strongminded the women feel. Calonice keeps insisting for Myrrhine to just: “lie down… and don’t bring… / anything for any reason. ” (948-49). Instead Myrrhine goes into the grotto looking for a portable bed, a mattress, a pillow, a blanket, a perfume, and another scent of perfume to stretch time and at the end of this situation, she tells Calonice to: “don’t forget to vote for making peace! (951).

He then says that he will think it over and Myrrhine just vanishes into the Acropolis without having sex with him. Without this scene, there would be no tailored view on what effect the self-restraint was having on all those involved. Therefore, the plot is well-thought-out, centered on the single action of conveying peace to Greece and Sparta, and leads to a sustaining and humorous conclusion. Although Aristotle thought that only his poetry applies to the respected form of tragedy, Aristophanes’s Lysistrata does too.

It has suitable and moving language, well established and concerned characters, and a plot that is unified, firm, and comical. Apart from a passing or a grand warfare skirmish, Lysistrata, according to Aristotle, is a work of fine art and commendable of its status as an early Greek play. In The Knights, Aristophanes states that to: “… win the people, always cook them some savoury that pleases them. ” His use of bawdy innuendos in Lysistrata bring this quote to life.