Oedipus the King and Lysistrata Cultures and Values

Length: 5 Pages 1195 Words

The Ancient Greek culture had many aspects. These cultures and qualities valued by the Greeks are seen throughout literature in many of the plays and stories written by the Greeks. From a democratic government, their belief about being morally accountable for their actions, religious beliefs of many gods and beliefs in myths, to the role that women play and the respect they give to the elders, all are apparent in Oedipus the King and Lysistrata. Whether reading Oedipus the King or Lysistrata you will notice certain cultures that demonstrate the ancient Greeks values and beliefs. Religion was a great part of the Greek Culture. Many of the works written during this time period were to be preformed at ceremonies so the gods would be pleased. They believed that the gods determined their fate and that their fate could not be changed. This was also apparent in the writings such as Oedipus the King. The priest in Oedipus said “Now we pray to you. You cannot equal the gods, your children know that, bending at your altar. But we do rate you first of men,”. This shows that although Oedipus is King and is thought or very highly, the gods rule first and foremost in the eyes of the Greeks. While showing respect for the King they Continue...


"Consider the city as fleece, recently shorn.... Occasionally, however, one would try and change the fate of the gods. I must know it all, Although Lysistrata is Greek, much of the play does not reveal the real role of the women. It does show through in certain areas though. Quotes such as "By Artemis, goddess of the dew, "By Artemis, goddess of the hunt, and "Charon's anxious to sail you're holding up the boat for Hell! are just a few of the references to the gods by the women. The weapons would consist of spindles, chamber pots, pinchers, lamps, and other assorted household objects. If a god said something would happen it was believed and normally accepted as fate. Men and women bantering back and forth were trying to back up their sides of the arguments. As the play goes on, his respect is no longer shown as his fears and disbelief begins to take over. There again their dependence on their home life and sewing is shown. One of the cultures of the ancient Greeks that almost seemed unbelievable was that the women were responsible for the family's financial accounts; this showed that the women did in fact have some educational upbringing. While both plays are fiction, Oedipus seems to be something that could have happened in those days and Lysistrata seems more modern in many ways, but both are great evidence of the culture and values of Ancient Greece. Both viewed this as a way to take responsibility for their actions. The role of the women in ancient Greece is apparent in many ways. This signified their dependence on the house and home life and not the outside world.