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    19/01/11

    Oedipus The King

    adriana.brook@utoronto.ca

  • 19/01/11

    The Plan for Today • Context: Athenian Theatre – Especially: theatre as suspension of reality

    • The Gods: Dionysus vs. Apollo • Delphi and Greek Prophecy • Oedipus the King: – Back story and plot review – Knowledge (human vs. divine)

    • Contemporary Parallels: Oedipus and Pericles

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    5th c. Athenian Playwrights

    • Sophocles (Oedipus the King) • Euripides (Bacchants, Medea, Cyclops*) • Aeschylus (not on the syllabus) • Aristophanes (Lysistrata, Wasps, Clouds)

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    The City Dionysia • Peisistratus ca. 534 BC • Acropolis (“the high part of the city”) • Cothurnus (Buskin) • Choregos • Liturgy

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    • μηδὲν ἄγαν • mêden agan • Nothing in excess

    • γνῶθι σεαυτόν • gnôthi seauton • Know yourself

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    Oedipus the King Oedipus Rex (Latin)

    Oedipus Tyrannus (Greek)

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    • Laius • Jocasta • Polybus • Merope • Sphinx

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    • Why is there a plague on the city of Thebes at the beginning of the play? (Bonus: who brings this information to Oedipus?)

    • Who is the first person in the play to know that Oedipus has killed his father and married his mother?

    • How does Oedipus (the baby) end up in Corinth with Polybus and Merope?

    • What exactly is the relationship between Oedipus and Jocasta? Oedipus and Antigone?

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    • Prologue • Parodos:

    – the chorus enters • Episodes:

    – the named characters of the story advance the plot, the meter of the poetry is close to normal speech

    • Stasima (singular = stasimon): – a group of unnamed people react to what’s happening, in

    complicated poetic meters with musical accompaniment • Kommos:

    – a back and forth dialogue between a character and the chorus • Exodos

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    • Prologue:

    – there is a plague because the killer of Laius has not been found – there was a single attacker, only one man got away

    • 1st Episode: – Teiresias tells Oedipus that he killed his father and married his

    mother • 3rd Episode:

    – Jocasta’s child was exposed – Laius was slaughtered at the place where three roads meet – right before Oedipus came to Thebes – Laius’ description – only one man attacked

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    • 4th Episode:

    – a messenger reports Polybus’ death – he reveals that brought Oedipus to Polybus, having received the

    baby from a shepherd (the same shepherd who’s already been summoned)

    • 5th Episode: – the shepherd confirms that he received the child (Oedipus) from

    Jocasta – the baby was the child of Jocasta and Laius

    • Exodos: – Jocasta’s hanging – Oedipus’s blinding – Creon will be the new king

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    What We Did Today • Context: Athenian Theatre – Especially: theatre as suspension of reality

    • The Gods: Dionysus vs. Apollo • Delphi and Greek Prophecy • Oedipus the King: – Back story and plot review – Knowledge (human vs. divine)

    • Contemporary Parallels: Oedipus and Pericles

    Slide 1 Slide 2 Slide 3 Slide 4 Slide 5 Slide 6 Slide 7 Slide 8 Slide 9 Slide 10 Slide 11 Slide 12 Slide 13 Slide 14 Slide 15 Slide 16 Slide 17 Slide 18

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