mounting challenges like costly wars H u m a n i t i e s
Essay questions These are formal essays and should be about 750 words each (1 and half pages-single spaced each). Do Only Two of the following Three essay choices.
Note: these are formal essays and should have an introduction, a body (where you demonstrate your thesis with direct evidence!!!!!!!), and a conclusion.
Note on Introductions:
Your introductions should contain all four of these elements: 1 describe the author and the work, 2 describe the historical context of the work, 3 introduce your topic, and 4 end in a thesis statement (“This paper will argue that Aristophanes make a masterful use of humor to demonstrate that…” ).
Note on conclusions:
Your conclusion should succinctly wrap up your paper and comment on the historical significance of the text in a way that affirms your thesis.
Note on the body of your papers:
Every paragraph should begin with a topic sentence and end in a transition sentence.
Essay 1: Lysistrata
Lysistrata gives a powerful argument about the role of masculinity in creating and prolonging conflict (in this case, the Peloponnesian War which seemed like it would never end). Describe one scene in Lysistrata that satirizes the inability of women to control men and the fortunes of war in Ancient Greece and argue whether you think the playwright, Aristophanes, is approving or disproving of this male dominance. Please use at least two quotes to demonstrate your point.
Essay 2: The Odyssey
Surprisingly, you can learn more about a culture by studying their comedy and humor than by studying their philosophy. People don’t often talk about Homer for his humor value, but it is pretty funny overall and humor is an important part of the epic. The character of Odysseus is a great example of this. Claypso, Circe, and Helen also demonstrate the role of humor in Homer as a means of making social commentary. Please find two examples from EITHER Helen’s, of Circe’s, or Calypso’s episode (ONLY CHOSE ONE CHARACTER) where Homer uses humor to demonstrate one or more ideas from the Homeric wordlist (see week one Module or the world list).
Essay 3: The Trial and Death of Socrates
By the time we get to the Trial and Death of Socrates (399 A.D.) the vital force of Athenian democracy had been spent. Faced with mounting challenges like costly wars, plague, and increasing internal conflicts, the democracy in Athens had become increasingly intolerant and reactionary. The Trial and Death of Socrates is an example of this. Please describe two ways that Socrates demonstrates two Homeric values in Plato’s The Trial and Death of Socrates and demonstrate why his subtle wisdom illustrates that Athenian culture had developed serious problems with power and authority.
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