An analysis of clytemnestras role in agamemnon

By tradition, one man, the Chorus Leader, speaks for the Chorus during scenes that involve dialogue, but he is not otherwise distinguished from the Chorus as a whole. One critic has suggested that Aeschylus was presenting Athens with two dilemmas in the Agamemnon, the problem of justice and the problem of the relationship between the sexes.

However, consistently weak winds prevented the fleet from sailing. A beacon flashes, and he joyfully runs to tell the news to Queen Clytemnestra. Nearly every male character in the play criticizes Clytemnestra for exhibiting qualities associated with men, and in the end, these very qualities—decisiveness, aggression, and sense of justice—are in fact what allow her to carry out her revenge plot.

The Chorus consists of elders of Argos, old men of high birth who were too old to go to Troy. On the other hand, one aspect of this theme is perhaps hard for a modern audience to relate to, and that is the sense that it is not simply wrong but against nature and monstrous for the female to kill the male, for a wife to kill her husband.

They form the council that assists Clytemnestra to rule while Agamemnon is away. The approach of the chorus is a statement of the power Clytemnestra has held during the absence of Agamemnon; something she is unwilling to give up.

The Chorus expresses a sense of foreboding, and Clytemnestra comes outside to order Cassandra inside. She is presented completely sympathetically. On the one hand, Lefkowitz Clytemnestra demonstrates an awareness of female gender norms and uses or discards them at will to her own advantage.

It is through the inversion of traditional gender roles, adopting masculine speech, behaviours and activities, that Clytemnestra ultimately achieves her revenge for the sacrifice of Iphigenia. The fictional protagonist Becky Sharp plays Clytemnestra in a charade described in chapter 51 of William M.

Then Cassandra begins to speak, uttering incoherent prophecies about a curse on the house of Agamemnon. But whatever a modern audience might feel, it does seem clear that Aeschylus is at least suggesting that men should look carefully at the way they treat women, that if wives become Clytemnestras, it may be because their husbands have been Agamemnons.

If so, that would mean she had been planning revenge against Agamemnon for a long time and was just looking for an accomplice. Clytemnestra waited until he was in the bath, and then entangled him in a cloth net and stabbed him.

Yet the taking of vengeance seems to be the only way that justice can be done. Agamemnon acts coldly toward her, and says that to walk on the carpet would be an act of hubris, or dangerous pride; she badgers him into walking on the robes, however, and he enters the palace.

Apollo gave her the gift of prophecy, but when she refused to bear him a child, he punished her by making all around her disbelieve her predictions. Clytemnestra does not hide from her actions, instead she freely admits the murder and embraces the power and authority.

The Chorus sang early in the play, in what is known as the Hymn to Zeus, that Zeus is somehow the answer, that he has ordained that men shall learn from suffering linesbut there is no indication in this play that they have learned anything.

The implication of this statement is sexual but is also a double entendre as a woman would have been responsible for lighting the fire of the hearth Pomeroy, Agamemnon and his brother Menelaus were in exile at the home of Tyndareus; in due time Agamemnon married Clytemnestra and Menelaus married Helen.

The Trojan War lasted ten years.


It might be argued that this is particularly well represented by Clytemnestra, the murderer, taking charge of the burial of her husband. This masculine representation continues in the behaviours and activities Clytemnestra adopts, culminating in the murder of her husband.

In another version, her first husband was King of Lydia. The American modern dancer and choreographer Martha Graham created a two-hour ballet, Clytemnestraabout the queen.

She is, a sympathetic character in many respects, but the righteousness of her crime is tainted by her entanglement with Aegisthus. His joy at the news that Troy has fallen and his longing to welcome his master home suggest that the people as a whole are loyal to Agamemnon.

This is perhaps the most universal of the themes we have discussed, and its prominence in the Agamemnon may help to explain why this is the most performed play of the trilogy. Suffering and Human Fragility Finally, there is the theme of the fragility of human life and the universality of suffering.

The Chorus underline this message again and again for example, inmost strikingly when they speak of themselves as "apart from others, alone in thought" in tracing disaster, not to good fortune in a family, but to injustice in a family.

Agamemnon: Theme Analysis

Her attempts to elicit help failed she had been cursed by Apollo that no one would believe her prophecies. When Iphigenia arrived at Aulis, she was sacrificed, the winds turned, and the troops set sail for Troy. He appears on stage only briefly, and behaves arrogantly.

The dilemma seems hopeless. When all is well a shadow can overturn it. Agamemnon speaks of moderation and of not offending the gods, but in consenting to walk on the purple tapestries his wife strews for him, he reveals the arrogance also shown in speaking of the gods as merely helping him, and in ordering his wife to take care of his concubine.

When he is gone, the Chorus, made up of the old men of Argos, enters and tells the story of how the Trojan Prince Paris stole Helen, the wife of the Greek king Menelaus, leading to ten years of war between Greece and Troy.

In his pride in the completeness of the destruction of Troy, he embodies the blindness of all to the dangers of such excess.

Agamemnon, having arrived at his palace with his concubine, the Trojan princess Cassandrain tow and being greeted by his wife, entered the palace for a banquet while Cassandra remained in the chariot.Get everything you need to know about Clytemnestra in Agamemnon.

Analysis, related quotes, timeline. The character of Clytemnestra in Agamemnon from LitCharts | The creators of SparkNotes. Clytemnestra: Clytemnestra, in Greek legend, a daughter of Leda and Tyndareus and wife of Agamemnon, commander of the Greek forces in the Trojan War.

She took Aegisthus as her lover while Agamemnon was away at war. Upon his return, Clytemnestra and Aegisthus murdered Agamemnon. Clytemnestra was then killed by. Everything you ever wanted to know about Clytemnestra in Agamemnon, written by masters of this stuff just for you Character Analysis.

Even though Agamemnon gets a shout-out in the play's title, Clytemnestra may well be its most interesting character. there is the deception she carries off, by playing the role of loving wife in front of. Agamemnon begins with a Watchman on duty on the roof of the palace at Argos, waiting for a signal announcing the fall of Troy to the Greek armies.

A beacon flashes, and he joyfully runs to tell the news to Queen Clytemnestra. When he is gone, the Chorus, made up of the old men of Argos, enters and.

Agamemnon: Theme Analysis, Free Study Guides and book notes including comprehensive chapter analysis, complete summary analysis, author biography information, character profiles, theme analysis, metaphor analysis, and top ten quotes on classic literature.

Clytemnestra of Greek Mythology: Character Analysis, Overview Agamemnon, Clytemnestra's husband, was willing to sacrifice his daughter to the goddess, Artemis. Clytemnestra of Greek.

An analysis of clytemnestras role in agamemnon
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