Summary Notes on Medea

Authorial Information Euripides was born in 484 BC and took up drama at the young age of 25. At most drama competitions, however his plays came in last place until he was about 45 or 50 years old. In his entire life, he wrote 92 plays of which only five received first place awards at competition. Euripides despised women. He had been married twice to unfaithful women and had three sons. This hate of women is shown in his work of Medea. Author’s Unique Style Euripides’ characterization of women is considered unique in the play Medea because the tragic Hero/ine – in this case Jason and Medea in each one’s own sense – is done over by a woman after cheating on her with the princess of the King of Corinth. He places emphasis on human emotions and individual psychology in order to help the reader produce a clear picture of the characters. Medea features strong dramatic situations and a stirring part for the heroine, whose attitude of feminine pride and tradition is still popular in today’s world. Setting The entire play takes place on the island of Corinth in present day Greece. Individual places such as Medea/Jason’s home, and the palace of the king and princess are also spoken of and used in the play. It has an ancient Greek setting as well. Themes – “What goes around comes around.” – The theme of revenge in the sense of Medea’s strong desire to seek revenge on Jason. Another possible theme of Medea may be that at times a punishment of revenge should justify the crime – no matter how severe. Only a person in such a situation (and greater beings) may know what to action to take in this position. Characters Medea The strong willed woman who would do anything for her husband is victimized by him and turns deadly. After going to a great extent to help Jason – killing people to be with him and married to him – he turns around and marries a younger princess and leaves Medea and their two children with nothing. This deeply angers Medea – he…

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