Additionally, Greek tragedy contends that the audience must experience catharsis after tragic events happen and that the hero is left to face the world by him or herself (“Greek Theatre History Notes”). Aristotle defined tragedy as, [An] imitation of an action that is serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude; in language embellished with each kind of artistic ornament, the several kinds being found in separate parts of the play; in the form of action, not of narrative; with incidents arousing pity and fear, wherewith to accomplish its katharsis of such e... ... middle of paper ... ...ory of Tragedy in the POETICS.” Ed. Barbara F. McManus. November 1999. Web.
The six parts to Aristotle’s elements of tragedy are: Plot, character, language, thought, spectacle, and melody. According to Aristotle, the most important element is the plot. Aristotle writes in Poetics that, “It is not for the purpose of presenting their characters that the agents engage in action, but rather it is for the sake of their actions that they take on the characters they have” (Aristotle 1150). Plots should have a beginning, middle, and end that have a unity of actions throughout the play making it complete. In addition, the plot should be complex making it an effective tragedy.
The one factor that does seem to be present in every interpretation of what is necessary in a tragedy is the catharsis that is brought up in the viewer. Without that emotional reaction, whether of pity, empathy, sympathy, or perturbation, a work never seems to be classified as a tragedy. O'Neill wrote Desire Under the Elms borrowing themes from the myths of Phaedra, Medea, and Oedipus. He was trying to create a Greek tragedy in the setting of his time. Racine wrote Phedre in classic Greek style, attempting to create a Greek tragedy that had been written in the modern day.
This was known as a catharsis. Aristotle also introduced the idea that the protagonist has a 'hamartia', a defect in character that leads to his eventual destruction. Is the tragic outcome of Romeo and... ... middle of paper ... ...character in the protagonists. Fate couldn't be avoided, but if the protagonists had done things differently, the outcome of the play wouldn't be as tragic. One often wonders if the tragedy in Romeo and Juliet could have been avoided , without the seemingly vital need for bloodshed.
However, the Gods had this plan set forth for Oedipus since his birth. The series of events and coincidences that occur to lead Oedipus to his demise are not all of his own doing, but the Gods deceive him into thinking so. “It is not fate that I should be your ruin, Apollo is enough; it is his care to work this out” (Sophocles 436-438). Teiresias clearly states that the god Apollo is at fault for Oedipus’ fate, but at the end of the tragedy, Oedipus blames no one but himself. This is the illusion of free will that is often given in cases where fate is dominant.
Greek mythology and performances are often based off the evidence of calamitous and catastrophic epics, usually called tragedies. An archetypal tragedy is a disastrous play that directly follows the phases of a typical tragedy, and induces a plot revolving around one specific event aimed at one or more protagonists. An archetypal tragedy includes a protagonist that experiences a completion of an ideal, fatal faults, and ardor realizations and intuitions. In Oedipus, an epic written by Sophocles, Oedipus becomes known as the protagonist with harmful circumstances perspiring around his fate. Sophocles introduces Oedipus as a tragic character by inducing hubris and dramatic irony as key components to his downfall.
A tragedy’s itended purpose is to raise emotions of both pity and fear through a catharsis. The audience often feels empthatic for the protagonist, as he or she is likely described as a tragic hero. In order to be classified as a tragic hero there are specific criteria that must be met. Aristotle dissected tragedy to further understand the purpose, components, and the criterium. Through his studies, Aristotle formulated, Poetics, his very own book explaining his theory on tragedy.
If the novella fits some specifications for a novella yet does not function as a Greek tragedy, perhaps it is something else. Therefore, Chronicle of a Death Foretold could be classified as a “modern tragedy” as it fits the literary styles of Greek tragedies, such as Oedipus Rex by Sophocles, yet drifts away into the realm of more modern writing. First, Aristotle's first component of a proper Greek tragedy is plot. The plot for tragedy has to ... ... middle of paper ... ...ndeed spectacle which allows the novella to furthermore be classified as a tragedy. Overall, Chronicle of a Death Foretold contains the main elements needed to classify the novella as a tragedy.
We can see the evolution from the earlier Greek tragedies, that focus on divine intervention and vindication for acts that displeased the gods, to the very humanly emotional Hamlet, whose eventual realization of his own responsibilities introduce an entirely new concept to the tragic form. This dramatic range demonstrates the differences between the concepts of tragedy as defined by Aristotle, who believed all tragedy stemmed from some fatal flaw in the character of the hero and that of Nietzsche, who believed the concept of tragedy focused more on the community than on the character of the hero alone. These dramas also represent the evolution of the art of dramatic writing from the earliest Greek authors through Shakespeare, who virtually reinvented tragedy and elevated the art of dramatic writing to the form we know it as today.
First, the Greek tragedy introduces a new type of production. Instead of telling what has already happened, which previous plays had done, the Greeks began to show what may happen. At this point, the plot was quite straightforward. The tragic hero causes his own demise; however, the playwright follows the hero’s downfall with a purging of pity and fear, called catharsis. Centuries later, Elizabethan theatre gained popularity.