An analysis of tragedy by aristotle

Our pity and fear is aroused most when it is family members who harm one another rather than enemies or strangers. Aristotle differentiates between tragedy and comedy throughout the work by distinguishing between the nature of the human characters that populate either form.

There is less unity in the imitation of the epic poets plurality of actions and this is proved by the fact that an epic poem can supply enough material for several tragedies. Aristotle defines tragedy according to seven characteristics: The remainder of the Poetics is given over to examination of the other elements of tragedy and to discussion of various techniques, devices, and stylistic principles.

Comedy deals in the trivial and the inconsequential. Likewise, the tragedy writer may make use of one kind of metre, and the comedy writer of another.

Agamemnon, The Choephori, and The Eumenides

Sophocles innovated further by introducing a third actor, and gradually tragedy shifted to its contemporary dramatic form. Recent work, though, argues that translating rhuthmos here as "rhythm" is absurd: However, starting in with a Macedonian classicist, M.

These are "reversal" peripeteiawhere the opposite of what was planned or hoped for by the protagonist takes place, as when Oedipus' investigation of the murder of Laius leads to a catastrophic and unexpected conclusion; and "recognition" anagnorisisthe point when the protagonist recognizes the truth of a situation, discovers another character's identity, or comes to a realization about himself.

These and suffering or violence are used to evoke the tragic emotions. Violent situations are most tragic if they are between friends and family.

Not surprisingly, the Poetics seeks to discover the end or purpose of all the poetic arts, and especially of tragic drama.

Poetics Summary

In the best kind of plot, one character narrowly avoids killing a family member unwittingly thanks to an anagnorisis that reveals the family connection. In a perfect tragedy, the character will support the plot, which means personal motivations and traits will somehow connect parts of the cause-and-effect chain of actions producing pity and fear.

Episodic plots are bad because there is no necessity to the sequence of events. Thus the structure of events, the plot, is the goal of tragedy, and the goal is the greatest thing of all.

Where the epic poem makes use of language alone, the playing of the lyre involves rhythm and melody. According to him, action is first, character is second.

The purpose of action in the tragedy, therefore, is not the representation of character: To teach you how to be a better person. Most of the Poetics is devoted to analysis of the scope and proper use of these elements, with illustrative examples selected from many tragic dramas, especially those of Sophocles, although Aeschylus, Euripides, and some playwrights whose works no longer survive are also cited.Aristotle's Analysis of Oedipus Rex Aristotle is the most influential philosopher in the history of Western thought.

Apply Aristotle's theory of tragedy to Shakespeare's Macbeth.

A Greek drama by Sophocles, Oedipus Rex, was praised in the Poetics of Aristotle as the model for classical tragedy and is still considered a principal example of the genre.

Video: Aristotle's Poetics: Summary & Analysis. So, for example, Aristotle characterizes tragedy by saying that it involves superior individuals caught in unfortunate circumstances.

Agamemnon, The Choephori, and The Eumenides

On the. Several of Aristotle's main points are of great value for an understanding of Greek tragic drama. Particularly significant is his statement that the plot is the most important element of tragedy: Tragedy is an imitation, not of men, but of action and life, of happiness and misery.

The eContent uploaded on this website is on Literary Theory and Criticism. The target learners are graduate and post-graduate students. Aristotle’s Concept of Tragedy - Literary Theory and Criticism. Tragedy serves to arouse the emotions of pity and fear and to effect a katharsis (catharsis) of these emotions.

Aristotle divides tragedy into six different parts, ranking them in order from most important to least important as follows: (1) mythos, or plot, (2) character, (3).

Aristotle classifies various forms of art with the help of object, medium and manner of their imitation of life.

Interesting Literature

OBJECT: Which object of life is imitated determines the form of literature. If the Life of great people is imitative it will make that work a Tragedy and if the life .

An analysis of tragedy by aristotle
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