Aristophanes’
Lysistrata
Two Quotes
Women’s peithō, how appraised?
Two Quotes
Chorus Leader to Lysistrata:
Magistrate (on Demostratus)
Hail the bravest of all women!
Now you must be more besides:
Firm but soft, high-class but low-brow,
Strict but lenient, versatile.
Delegates from every city,
captured by your potent charms,
Come before you and request your
arbitration of their cause. (p. 142)
. . . a noisy rooftop party for Adonis,
just like the one that spoiled our
assembly.
That ill-starred, foolish politician moved
we sail to Sicily, while his wife was
dancing
and yelling for Adonis. When he said,
let’s muster allied troops for this armada,
his wife was on the rooftop getting drunk
and yelling ‘Oh doomed youth!’ But he
persisted,
the goddamned stubborn hotheaded son
of a bitch! (p. 110)
Resolved:
Women in Aristophanes' Lysistrata embody
positive role models (politically, etc.)
Agenda
•
Epideictic Project
• An Immodest Proposal
•
Recap
• Persuasion and Democracy in Thucydides Readings 2
•
Persuasion in Lysistrata
• Let’s Count the Ways. . .
•
Resolved:
• Women in Aristophanes' Lysistrata embody positive
role models (politically, etc.)
Epideictic Project
An Immodest Proposal
Gorgianic Figures
Basic concept
• Colon
•
rhetorical unit
Word repetition
• Anaphora
•
•
•
colon beginning
Other figures
• Antithesis
colon end
Anastrophe
•
end/beginning
contrast
•
Homoioteleuton
•
Isocolon/parisosis
Antistrophe
•
•
•
• end rhyme
•
same/similar-length
successive cola
Paronomasia
•
word play
Our epideixis..
We live in a time of overpopulation, we die in a time
of great starvation. Though these problems seem
infinite, our solution is infantile.
Recap
Persuasion and Democracy in Thucydides
Readings 2
Concepts
•
•
“Truthiness,”
•
•
 “truth that comes from
the gut”
•
Foundationalism
 The “noble simplicity”
•
versus Spin &
revalorization
Sophistic ethics
•
Law of nature
Right of the stronger
(Counter-)rhetoric
• captatio benevolentiae
• demophilia topos
•
Stasis
and persuasion?
Lenses
•
•
•
Despotic/oligarchic democracy? (Michels)
“The preponderant elements of the movement, the men who
lead and nourish it, end by undergoing a gradual detachment
from the masses and are attracted within the orbit of the
‘political class’ ” (Political Parties)
Charismatic democracy? (Weber)
“… devotion to the exceptional sanctity, heroism or exemplary
character of an individual person, and of the normative patterns
or order revealed or ordained by him” (Economy and Society)
Pragmatic democracy? (Finley)
Democracy’s “substantive promises”: “what counts is that the
people expected results and at times, sometimes for long
periods, felt satisfied with them” (Ancient History)
Melian Debate
concepts
lenses
“Nature (phusis) always compels gods (we
believe) and men (we are certain) to rule
over anyone they can control. We did not
make this law (nomos), . . . but . . . will
take it as we found it. . . .”
(Thucydides 3.38.4, p. 68)
concepts
Erōs, logos
• Plague
•
“The pleasure of the
moment . . . [was] set up
as [a standard] of nobility
and usefulness" (50)
• Mytilenean Debate
•
•
CLEON: Athenians as
rhetoric-addicts
DIODOTUS: “Hope and
passionate desire (erōs) . . .
dominate every situation”
(73)
lenses
• Stasis Description
•
“The cause of all this was
the desire to rule out of
avarice and ambition” (93)
• Sicilian Debate
•
•
NICIAS: “Do not be sick . . .
with yearning (erōs) for
what is not here” (116)
HISTORIAN’S ANALYSIS:
“Now everyone alike fell in
love (erōs enepese) with
the enterprise” (122)
Antix-Rhetorical Rhetoric?
Cleon
Diodotus
•
•
“The habits you’ve
formed: why you
merely look on at
discussions, and real
action is only a story to
you!” (68)
concepts
lenses
“The most difficult
opponents are those
who also accuse one of
putting on a rhetorical
show (epideixis) for a
bribe” (71)
“Gorgianic” Cleon (Thuc. 3.38.4)
“you are accustomed to being VIEWERS OF WORDS”
eiōthate theatai men tōn logōn gignesthai,
akroatai de tōn ergōn,
“and LISTENERS TO DEEDS”
Figures:
parisosis (closely balanced clauses)
antithesis (contrast)
homoioteleuton (end rhyme)
oxymoron (ironic non-sequitur)
Persuasion in Lysistrata
Let’s Count the Ways. . .
Play and Backdrop
431 War begins
421 Peace of Nicias
415-413 Sicilian Expedition
412 Board of (10) Probouloi
411 Aristophanes’ Lysistrata produced
411-410 Oligarchic coup, politeia, democratic
restoration
Lysistrata: Layout
Comic structure
• CRISIS
•
•
war
husbands absent
•
•
•
sex-strike
fiscal embargo
logos?
• SOLUTION
• CELEBRATION
•
•
Athenians, Spartans
Women, men
Dramatic arc*
•
•
Prologue
Occupation plot
• “Magistrate” scene
•
Strike-plot
• “Rod”-Myrrhine scene
•
Reconciliation
• Men and women
• Spartans and Athenians
* Courtesy Henderson 1987.
Peitho: Types of, Success
Non-verbal persuasion
Verbal persuasion
Some Dialogue. . .
MAGISTRATE: You can stop
these wartime
hardships. . .?
LYSISTRATA: Sure!
MAGISTRATE: How? . . .
LYSISTRATA: . . . First you
wash the city as we wash
the wool, . . .
Bring it all together now,
and make one giant ball
of yarn. . . .
MAGISTRATE: What do
women know of war? (Lit.
“Is this not a terrible
thing, these women
‘woofing’ and ‘warping’
us!”). . .
LYSISTRATA: . . . First of all
we make the children,
Then we send them off to
war.
MAGISTRATE: That’s
enough! (Lit. “You must
stop remembering evil!”)
Resolved:
Women in Aristophanes' Lysistrata embody
positive role models (politically, etc.)
Criteria