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The Tragedy Of Euripides ' Medea

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Euripides’ Medea is considered, according to Aristotle’s Poetics, a tragedy. The play centers on Medea, an outsider and wife to Jason, who seeks to punish Jason for taking another wife. The play is considered a tragedy because it contains the three unities as well as the six elements of drama mentioned by Aristotle. Despite the fact that the does the play fits the criteria of what Aristotle considers tragedy, however, Medea is actually not a tragedy but tells the story about a successful revenge. In the Poetics, Aristotle has established a criteria consisting of four requirements that character must have to be considered the tragic hero. Medea, however, is not a tragic character because she does not possess two of the four requirements: goodness and correctness. Aristotle’s first requirement of goodness states: The persons wit[ have character ifin the way previousty stated their speech or their action reveals the moraI quality of some choice, and good character if a good choice (Aristotle 130). Having a “good” character will allow provoke pity and fear in a tragedy. Medea however does not possess the “good” quality. She does not express it through the course of the play in her actions. In the opening of the play, the nurse makes it known that she wished that “the Argo never had set sail (1) which indicates the idea that the only time Medea was possibly good is before Jason set sail “to seek the golden pelt for Pelias” (6-7). Medea fell in love with him and because of it
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