The Bacchae Essay

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Glenn is a Ph.D. specializing in theatre history and literature. In this essay he examines Euripides's ambiguous treatment of Dionysus as a god to be either worshiped or abhorred in The Bacchae.

For half a century, Euripides was known as a playwright unafraid to speak his mind. Very often what he had to say disturbed his audiences. In plays like Medea, Hippolytus, and Alcestis, he recalled stories and myths familiar to ancient Greek audiences. Yet, viewed from the perspective of their respective protagonists, they also function as harsh criticisms of the Athenian society they inhabited. These plays show the Greeks' utter disregard for women, bastards, and foreigners. In addition, they lampoon some of the culture's most cherished heroes and even call into question the wisdom of the gods. Euripides was not one to follow rules of literature, pander to audience tastes, or shy away from public controversy...

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This section contains 2,188 words
(approx. 6 pages at 400 words per page)
Buy The Bacchae Study Guide
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Drama for Students
The Bacchae from Drama for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.
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