Compare and Contrast Essay on Lysistrata and The Cyclops

Published: 2023-03-02
Compare and Contrast Essay on Lysistrata and The Cyclops
Type of paper:  Essay
Categories:  Comparative literature
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 1033 words
9 min read

Lysistrata is a comedy that is against the war that is done by a Greek play writer, Aristophanes. This play was first done in 411 BCE. Lysistrata is a comedy that provides an account of the extreme activities of the women in bringing to the end of the Peloponnesian war. The play urges the women in Greece to deny their men's sexual privileges as a way of coercing their husbands to negotiate for peace talks that would ensure that there is peace in the land after stopping the war (Morales 282). Some of the people who came across this found it as a great thought and one that would work well. Therefore, this brings the issue that sex serves as a vessel for fun and a way of celebrating pleasure and other things. On the other hand, the Cyclops is a comic play by a Greek artist, which paints a different image of what is seen as a way of celebrating in Lysistrata. Sex and drinking darkened the moods of the Cyclops as they brought pain and suffering (O'Sullivan 134).

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Both plays have different perceptions of Lysistrata, sex, and drinking is seen as a way of enjoyment and celebrating after having an accomplishment (Morales 282). This is the reason why the play writer is urging the women to deny their husbands' sexual intercourse as a way of denying them a reason to celebrate until peaceful talks are held. The condition under which sex will resume is after peace, which signifies there will be celebration due to peace being restored. "Women are to withhold sexual privileges from their menfolk as a means of forcing them to bring an end to the war." (Morales 282). These are the words of the play writer when she calls upon all the women to stop engaging in sex with their men to allow for peace negotiations (Morales 282).

In the Cyclops, sex and drinking are seen as a thing that brought darkness to the Cyclops when, after drinking together with Silenus as they tried to outdo each other in alcohol signifies that they were somewhere trying to have fun after a voyage (O'Sullivan 134). They took too much until Cyclops was drunk. "Cyclops is well and truly drunk; he steals Silenus away to his cave." (O'Sullivan 134). At this point, he takes Silenus away and into his cave, where he probably wanted to have sex, which was also a way of celebrating according to him and having fun. After he vanishes into the cave, Odysseus finds a chance to carry out one of his activities, which he had well planned. Odysseus succeeds, and his friends accompanied him into his mission (O'Sullivan 134). "They succeed in burning out the Cyclops' eye." (O'Sullivan 134). This caused too much pain to the Cyclops. At this point, Cyclops' eye was burned, and this turned into menace and pain. "The blinded Cyclops screams that he has been blinded." This is an indicator of the pain that the Cyclops was in after being burned in his eye after drinking. Therefore the thesis provided that sex and drinking serve as vehicles for humor and the celebration of pleasure in Lysistrata and that they darken the mood of The Cyclops by evoking not happiness, but menace and pain are real as we have found out in the previous paragraphs.

The thesis can further be supported by phrases from Lysistrata when the write of the play mentions that the women were not willing to adhere to her call to deny their men sexual intercourse until peace resumed. This is also a way of showing how the women also wanted sexual intercourse; perhaps they also find it as a necessary thing that is important to them to have pleasure and enjoyment. "Women are hysterical in nature and devoted to wine and sex." (Morales 282). A magistrate made a reflection on the emotional nature of the women and how much they had a dedication to drinking and having promiscuous sex with their male counterparts. This statement goes further to show how people, including the women, loved and treasure sex and drinking as the best tool for enjoyment and any celebrations.

In the Cyclops, the giant got drunk as a way of enjoying and went ahead to have sex for fun. He regrets having drunk as the drink was the reason why he became blind. As opposed to Lysistrata, in the Cyclops, sex, and drinking were to bring celebration and enjoyment, but in this play, they turn out to cause pain to the Cyclops (O'Sullivan 134). Conversely, sex and alcohol in Lysistrata are a vessel of pleasure, which neither the men nor the women had any attribution to any pain or menace. They all enjoy, and that is why it was hard for the play writer of Lysistrata had a hard time to convince the women to withhold sexual privileges to their male partners as they thought that their way of enjoyment and celebration was being tampered with. Therefore they were not willing to withhold. "The women agreed to abjure all sexual pleasures." (Morales 282). This indicates that later, they found it better to deny their men to push them into peace negotiations and to have celebrations with drinks and sex after a state of peace resumes (Morales 282). It further paints a picture of sex and drinking as enjoyment and celebrations vessel.

Finally, it is evident that people value sex and drinking and holds them, especially in their hearts that any time they want to celebrate, there must be wines and women to have sex. These are depicted by the two plays and are evident even in the current world. The youths and many other people link sex and drinking as the best ways at their disposal to celebrate for whichever accomplishments they make. However, the two plays have a contrast in the way that these two behaviors turn out. In Lysistrata, sex is valued by all and attributed to no problems. On the other hand, in the Cyclops, sex, and drinking cause pain and agony to the Cyclops after suffering a burn in his eye.

Work Cited

Morales, Helen. "Aristophanes' Lysistrata, the Liberian 'sex strike', and the Politics of Reception." Greece & Rome 60.2 (2013): 281-295.

O'Sullivan, Patrick. "Cyclops." A Companion to Euripides (2016): 313-333.

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