By Leona MacLeod
The most challenge dealing with critics of Sophokles' Elektra has regularly been figuring out the presentation of the vengeance and the character of justice it represents. This quantity addresses the moral problems with this play via an research of the language and argumentation which the characters use to give an explanation for and justify their behaviour. the point of interest is at the exam of the topics of aidos and dolos, and how within which each one contributes to our total figuring out of the vengeance as an act which, for all its justice, is still shameful. by means of exploring the union among those contradictory components, this examine exposes the moral complexity of Sophokles' remedy of the vengeance subject. Dolos & Dike features a beneficial critique of modern interpretative methods to the play, a whole bibliography, and an entire index of passages brought up.
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Extra info for Dolos and Dike in Sophokles' Elektra (Mnemosyne, Bibliotheca Classica Batava Supplementum)
12 Golden 1990: 62. '3 In this play, the paidagogos' duty and loyalty are to Agamemnon and with the latter's death he takes the role of father for the siblings and teacher to Orestes. Thus throughout the play, he is described in terms that suggest loyalty and faithfulness to the oikos: Elektra says that he was the only man faithful to her father (1351-52); she calls him the fiovoq aomip 86|ia>v (1354) and addresses him as father (1361). Orestes addresses him as (23) and calls him ea0A,6<; (24).
The Chorus and Elektra identify dolos as the contriver of Klytaimnestra's killing of Agamemnon 279). Moreover, she herself expresses a fear in her prayer to Apollo lest she be brought down by dolos (649). 30 Dolos is repaid by dolos as murder is by murder. However, we should remember that, while both may employ dolos, Orestes' use of it is consistently connected with dike 28 Minadeo 1994: 113 sees an additional implication in the order to act alone which is meant to exclude Elektra from the plan and vengeance ("Electra's very participation in the ergon violates the spirit of the god's oracle").
In the Elektra, the age, sex, and, status of the Chorus are all significant in identifying its role and function in the play as representatives of the polis who are allied with Elektra in opposition to those inside the palace. It is sometimes suggested that the choice of a Chorus of women underscores the non-political nature of the play. Strictly speaking, women did not participate in the running of the polis, but a female Chorus does not prevent a more broadly political element from entering its role in the dramatic action of the play.
Dolos and Dike in Sophokles' Elektra (Mnemosyne, Bibliotheca Classica Batava Supplementum) by Leona MacLeod