"The Iliad" and "Lysistrata"

Essay by sw33tcheekzCollege, UndergraduateA, March 2007

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Great kings and powerful warriors engage in heroic duels with each other to gain massive power, while a group of women take a vow of abstinence until a war has ended. Two different pictures of war are depicted in "The Iliad" by Homer and "Lysistrata" by Aristophanes.

"The Iliad" is a poem which is believed to be a collection of stories handed down through many generations but not of just one man. It is a story of the Trojan War and the leaders of the two city-states. When "The Iliad" was finally written, around 750 B.C.E., the Trojan War had already been over for more hundreds of years. Because of this, many of the ideas and characteristics of "The Iliad" may have been changed from the original story.

"Lysistrata" was a play by a playwright, Aristophanes. "Lysistrata" was written in Athens, in 411 B.C.E. during the Peloponnesian War. The play is a comedy, which conjures an unusual way to end the Peloponnesian War.

Both "The Iliad" and "Lysistrata" are stories which revolve around war. Both stories have all the characters deal with the war, not just have the war in the background. Yet, many differences are apparent in both stories.

In "The Iliad," the authors of the story only include the great warriors and kings of the time. "The Iliad" contains characters such as; Achilles, a half man and half god who is the greatest warrior in all of Greece, Agamemnon, the king of all the kings in Greece, Paris, a prince of Troy who steals Helen, the wife of Agamemnon's brother, Meneleus, who goes to Agamemnon to start the war. There are no roles of any kind of working class or slaves in the story. This reflects on the social structure of the world in the time "The Iliad"...