“Antigone” by written by Aeschylus
The Main Action or point of the play “Antigone” can be summarized as: To live with Fate. In the play, several themes illustrated include the power of love and what it causes people to resort to, the pride of life and its consequences and of course fate. Fate is the most central of all the themes going on in the play. Everyone in the play comes to some sad end. Each character has to live with the consequences that fate has brought to them. Some die in the end, a result of fate, while some live miserably following the devastating events of their lives, Cummings (2003). This play is tragic.
The happenings throughout the play are tragedies. This means that the main character or the protagonist in the play must be the tragic hero of the play. A tragic hero is someone who shows fatal flows in their behavior, then later recognizes their mistakes but has to live with the consequences of their fateful tragedies. In this play, the chief protagonist is Antigone. She is the heroine. She fights diligently for the just funeral of her deceased brother. She also fights to satisfy the traditional gods.
She is independent and stubborn and sticks to her own decisions even when she knows that she is out rightly illegal. The main antagonist in the play is the King of Thebes, Crain. He is the one who opposes everything right from happening because of his own pride and beliefs.
He opposes the will of their traditional gods, the betterment of his own people, the marriage of Antigone and Haemon and the development of his own family.
“Bacchae” written by Euripides
This is a Greek drama whose background is in one venue from start to the end. Opposing forces appear throughout the play. We see skepticism against a feeling of piety, reasoning against the failure to think, traditional Greek against modernity, the conflict between sexes, civilization verses ancientness among others. This is not the only theme in this play. The entire play must not be seen only with the eyes of opposing forces. Other themes include logic and the lack of it, respect and tolerance.
However, in the play, it is clear that opposing forces tend to diffuse into each other. The main character of the Greek drama or the protagonist is Deonysus. The entire play revolves around Deonysus personal opinion, belief and actions. This character has both physical and magical attributes. He is both physical and god at the same time.
He summons earthquakes and thunderstorms and his belief gets right into people’s heads driving them crazy. He promises that he will deal with those who oppose him and ends up doing just that. He is also both foreign and Greek at the same time.
He got born in Greek. He acquired a foreign religion in Asia. His audience is non Greeks.
He imposes his divinity and faith on his own people, Euripides (24). The main antagonist of the play is Pentheus. He is the force behind all the opposing Deonysus has in his effort to extend the new faith in Thebes. Being the King of Thebes at that time, Pentheus who has a terrible temper and arrogance refuses his people from attending the meetings by the gods. He wants to be a noble lord if he totally refuses the strange god and religion brought back to Thebes by Deonysus.
“Lysistrata” written by Aristophanes
The main objective of this play is: To stop war. The writer uses extraordinarily powerful sexual language.
He uses anti – war sex strikes to make the point. The comedy is largely anti war. The sexual words use only grabs the reader’s attention. In the play, the writer shows the power of women and how the women’s vision to reconcile their city is stronger than the political roles played by the men at that time. The women seized the polis as respectable people with trustworthy intentions. The main character in this anti war comedy is Lysistrata.
Her leading role in the play is to inspire women to go against their men until the two long decade Spartian and Athanian wars stops. The writer of this play uses this main character to show the strong need for a cease in bloodshed and unnecessary war by outlining the foolishness/folly of the Spartian and Athanian wars. The war finally ended. The women went back to their regular chores. The opposing public attitudes of the day got challenged as a result of this revolt, Aristophanes (4).
The main antagonist of the play is the magistrate. He is an uncompromising man whose judgement on women is hysteria, a love for wine and promiscuous sex. He is against the women revolution and blames it on the inability of the men to control their disobedient wives. The women shock the constables by overpowering them. This sends a strong message that they committed to stopping the wars.
“Phaedra” written by Jean Racine
The main objective of this play is: To deal with forbidden passion. The play is about love and depicts different kinds of love as expressed by the different characters in the play. We see the forbidden love or perverted love of the main character, phaedro towards her step son.
There is also romantic love, love existing between family members and between close friends. The other love portrayed is the aggressive and highly protective love where one has a passion to kill another to protect those they love. Unfortunately, all the love stories in the play end up the wrong way except the love for friends. In this play, the main character is Phaedro.
She is the main protagonist and the play revolves around her life, love and passions. The author displays Phaedro’s hysterical lust for her step son, Hippolytus. Though forbidden, Phaedro loves her step son so passionately that she is willing to let go of every love if only to be with her step son. She is a woman of misfortune, caught in a battle she does not have the ability to suppress, Recine (10). The antagonist of the play is Oenene. Because of his bitterness, he wants to kill Phaedro’s uncontrollable passion and desire for her step son at all costs. She urges her to bring out her passions without any considerable thought for the consequences that would have.
His actions and words show his strong desire to stop Phaedro from exploiting her love. Because of his actions, the result was the loss of family reputation built over a long time and the demise of Hippolytus and Phaedro. He plays a selfish and mean function throughout the play.
Aristophanes. Lysistrata. Indianapolis:Hackett Publishing Company, 2003. Web. 17 October 2011.
Cummings, Michael J. Introduction to Theban plays. 2003. Web. 17 October 2011. Euripides.
The Bacchae of Euripides. United States of America: Vail – Ballou Press, 1979. Web. 17 October 2011. Recine, Jean Baptiste.
Phaedra. Kessinger Publishing. Web.
17 October 2011.