Nowhere is Aristophanes' use of stage properties more striking than in Acharnians. Drawing on recent work in performance theory, this article attempts to reexamine the staging of major scenes in Acharnians by focusing on Aristophanes' concern for sensational and symbolically charged stage properties. Physical objects in this play seem to have two primary functions: (a) they "animate" and "anchor" many of Aristophanes' jokes; and (b) they are often the major vehicle through which Aristophanes reinforces his political and cultural commentary on wartime Athens.
Scharffenberger, Elizabeth W.
Deinon Eribremetas: The Sound and Sense of Aeschylus in Aristophanes' Frogs [Access article in PDF] Subject Headings:
Aeschylus -- In literature.
Sounds in literature.
This paper examines key elements in Frogs' "sound-portrait" of Aeschylus: 1) the aural impressions created by the character Aeschylus and 2) the sounds of the lyric passages that parody songs in Aeschylus' tragedies (i.e., Frogs 814–829 and 1265–1294). Among other points, it argues that Aristophanes' Aeschylus would have aurally evoked the comic stereotype of demagogues, as exemplified by the Paphlagonian in Knights. Its conclusion is that the sound-portrait of Aeschylus is one of several factors that helps make Frogs a sophisticated "interrogative" comedy that pointedly complicates its own political vision.
Greek drama (Satyr play) -- History and criticism.
Drama -- Chorus (Greek drama)
Despite a superficial kinship, Old Comedy and satyr-play avoid each other. Tragedy has extensive ties with both. Comedy engages tragedy but systematically ignores satyr-play. This "firewall" is documented across the entire comic corpus (e.g., Cratinus' Dionysalexandros). The "hauling scene" in Aristophanes' Peace emerges as the unique exception. Here comedy reproduces a visual from Sophocles' satyr-play Pandora (Sphyrokopoi). Comedy needs to invoke the primordial world of satyr-play that is uniquely relevant to a scene representing the utopian heuresis of peace by a pan-Hellenic discovery team. The two genres located at opposite ends of a political-cultural polarity uniquely cooperate in Peace.
Statistically prominent "key terms" in Birds make birds themselves into one of the themes of the play. None of Aristophanes' other plays has such a consistent set of thematic key terms. Birds are essential not only to the spectacle but also to the plot of the play. They are always both visible, as the chorus and other characters, and audible, in the bird-related language. As a result, the fantastic, political, and linguistic themes in the play are tightly integrated.
Cicero, Marcus Tullius. De finibus bonorum et malorum. Liber 5 -- Criticism, Textual.
All editors from the mid-nineteenth century to the present day have deemed De finibus 5.86 corrupt. In particular, they have transposed the words ut ait Theophrastus, and done so without good reason. Left in place, the words recall a turning point in a Theophrastean dialogue (On Happiness) similar to that in which they occur in Cicero's De finibus.
Greece -- Intellectual life -- To 146 B.C. -- Study and teaching.
Socrates -- Trials, litigation, etc.
This article describes how Socrates' trial can be used as the basis for a segment on ancient Greek thought in courses devoted to Western civilization. Specific exercises are detailed for presenting the ideas of the pre-Socratic scientists, the sophists, and Plato to show their contemporary relevance and to engage students as active learners. These preliminary exercises culminate in a mock trial based on the case of Athens vs. Socrates. An extensive bibliography is provided of secondary literature relevant to Socrates' trial and to Athenian legal procedures.