Analysis Of ' Medea ' About Extremes Essay

1117 Words Feb 27th, 2016 null Page
‘Medea is about extremes in human emotion.’ Discuss.

It is within the very nature of humans to be captivated by extreme emotions, yet within his Greek tragedy Medea, Euripides also demonstrates the extent to which we are bound by idyllic values of social order. This disjunction founded upon passion and reason is best contextualised by the gripping antithesis between Medea and Jason respectively. While Medea is the embodiment of barbaric excess, Jason is the unadulterated archetype of Greek culture and its civilised laws. In presenting the consequences of the oppressive culture of Greek society, as well as the destruction entailed with Medea’s unchecked emotions that propel her cause for revenge, Euripides seems to suggest that we should allow our passion to grow. But in doing so, we should also reign over them with reason, as exemplified by the Nurse’s character. The nature of human psychology is one that manifests itself in binary opposites, however, it is not contrived in such a way the forbids us from travelling the “middle way”.

Medea is a play that centralises on the human penchant to be consumed by emotions and the “fatal results” that such emotions may lend themselves to. From the outset of the play, the audience is never entirely sure of Medea’s protean character, whose mercurial temperament is prone to violent changes, as she is unresolved between accomplishing her “dreadful purposes” and behaving in accordance with her better judgement. When Medea “lies…

Related Documents