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21 Cards in this Set

  • Front
  • Back
Approximate date for Aristotle.
330 BC
Work by Aristotle studied in class
The Poetics
Three common means for poetry as a whole
1. Language
2. Rhythm
3. Harmony
Three types of characters/agents
1. Higher than average (idealism)
2. Average (realism)
3. Lower than average (caricature)
Difference in manner between epic and drama
Epic contains both narrative & speeches - drama is entirely acted
Two origins of poetry
1. Human instinct to imitate
2. Human pleasure in observation of imitation
Origins of tragedy and four stages of its growth
1. Improvisations - imitations
2. Dithyrambs - chorus of 50 priests of god Dionysius
3. Thespis - first actor
4. Aeschylus - playwright - introduces 2nd actor, reduces chorus to 15
5. Sophocles - playwright - 3rd actor, scenery, plurality of episodes, chorus of 12
Define tragedy
Imitation of an action that is serious and also as having magnitude, complete in itself, in language with pleasurable accessories, in dramatic not narrative form with incidents arousing pity and fear to accomplish the catharsis of such emotions
Six parts of every tragedy
1. Plot
2. Characters
3. Diction
4. Thought
5. Spectacle
6. Melody
Most important of the six parts
Three parts this part must have
Beginning, middle, and end
One unity Aristotle insists on
Unity of action - one complete action
Distinction between historian and poet
Historian describes what has been; poet describes what might be
Define peripety
Reversal of hero's fortunes
Define discovery
Change from ignorance to knowledge, love to hate
What is and what is not a tragic hero that produces the tragic effect?
He is...a good man whose misfortune is a result of his error in judgement

He is not...a good man passing from happiness to misery

He is not...a bad man passing from misery to happiness

He is extremely bad man falling from happiness to misery
Define the tragic pleasure or tragic effect
Pity and fear aroused in the audience
Define complication
All that precedes the crisis -- change in hero's fortune
Define denouement
Unravelling -- all that follows crises to the end
Which is preferable - a likely impossibility or an unconvincing possibility?
Likely impossibility
Why does Aristotle view tragedy as superior to the epic even though he views the structure of Homeric poems as perfect as can be?
Tragedy has more - music and spectacle, more concentrated and effective with greater unity