Lysistrata Themes

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Lysistrata is an original comedy written by Aristophanes and performed in 411 BCE. This was two years after the Athenian defeat against Sparta in the Sicilian expedition, after a 21-year long Peloponnesion war between Athens and Sparta. The name Lysistrata means “releaser of war” or “arm disbander.” Lysistrata is about women’s effort to end the war between Athens and Sparta, much like the one that was occurring at the time. In order to end the war, Lysistrata convinces the women of Greece to withhold sexual privileges from their husbands. Overtime, this play write has been geared to spread a message on feminism and antiwar efforts. The plays original theme can be debated, whether it was originally feminism, pacifism, or sexual stereotyping.…show more content…
Back in the early 1900s, people were more conservative, so having performers with erected phalluses would have required censorship. Around the 2000s was when it widely seen in the performance, as well as other aspects in order to make it more comical. Throughout the years, there were countless number of productions each with the director taking different approaches, due to the messages that the play was seeking to convey, or that they are attempting to have the audience depict. The themes of feminism, pacifism, or sexual stereotyping, can allow for theatrical elements such as costumes, lighting, sages, and even the script to change. For example, during the development of the Lysistrata Project, Ghada Amer, Palestinian playwright and director, discussed a switch of gender roles in the chorus of the play. The female chorus would have been played by men to emphasize that women in male dominated society do not have self-possession but are what men want them to be. “The men playing the female chorus would also wear hoods, to depict headless body, wearing hoods, exposing a headless body, in contrast to the male characters whose heads will be uncovered. This choice allows us to appreciate an alternative perspective of male domination over woman as a domination of the mind over the body. (Kotzamani, 2006)” Through different theatrical details, the message of the play can be interpreted differently. The comedy of Lysistrata that continues to be performed, each with its own style. The production not only gives a good laugh, it also leaves the audience with a

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