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…

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…

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…