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War and Love

In: Other Topics

Submitted By taytay0604
Words 1917
Pages 8
Women’s Power
Thao Vo
Monday 4:30-5:45

War, the word that has been and will always be the word that no one wants to hear or think about. Aristophanes, a writer of ancient Athens, wrote a comedy to discuss the serious topic of war and how it affected the Greeks. He is also the author of Lysistrata, a play where Aristophanes expressed his feeling and thought about the war during this period of time. “Aristophanes wrote to express his vision on life, his delight in life itself seen behind the warping screen of contemporary event.” In this play, we will get to see the importance and serious meaning of war toward the union, espectually the soldiers’ family. The play Lysistrata is about the war between Athens and Sparta. This play is about the story of “ an Athenian matron who convinces the women of Athens and Sparta to withhold sex from their husband until they sign a peace treaty.”The main character is Lysistrata, and she is one of the Athens’ women that willingly to stand up toward the men just to bring peace back. She does not want war between the cities in Greeks. Lysistrata wanted to save Greeks and she believed that if all the women agreed then they can achieve the tremendous goal. “So fine it comes to this--Greece saved by Woman!” She held a meeting with all the other women and told them about her plan to bring peace. There is only one way to save the union is to make all the women withhold sexual privileges with their husband. “sexually explicitly to a degree that can still shock a modern audience, it takes place during the Peloponnesian Wars”
“We must refrain from every depth of love.” Lysistrata believed that if the women refuse their husband then the men will stop fighting, because they cannot stand the fact that their wives do not want to have sex with them. The idea came from Lysistrata. At first the women refused to listen because they are too scared that they might give it up to the men when they come back. They think that it is impossible for them to follow her plan. Some of the women even said that they will not do that to their husband. “No, I won’t do it.” In the play, Cleonice stated that she would do anything else but giving up sex with her husband. “O please gives me the fire instead.” The statement that Cleonice gave proved that it is a hard decision for all the women to give up sex. The women in Athens were treated as a house wives and they has no right to voice their opinions. “Like the metics, the women of Athens were not citizens and did not enjoy any of the privileges of citizenship.”
In my opinion, I think the reason why the women refused to participate in the plan because during this time the man has all the power and women’s duties are to follow and satisfied their men. Women’s opinions are not listened to; even if they are right or not. After the women heard Lysistrata’s explanations, on why they have to be strong, they all agree to follow and withhold sex until Greeks is in peace. “We’ll disregard their knocking, beat them off—And they will soon be rabid for a peace.” Lysistrata told the women to repeat after what she said and swear to keep their promises. “Then you must all take oath and pledge your arms to the same stern conditions--.” This plan cannot be done with all the women put together. I think that they all are very brave and strong to be able to stand up like that. During this war, all the soldiers have to leave their home and family. The soldiers cannot come home to visit for a very long time. They have to live under the military life since they were little. “AT age 7, males were taken from their parents to live under military disciplines in barracks, until age 30.” I can understand the feeling of all the women that have to let their husband go and risk their lives. The feeling of staying far from your husband and keep on worrying gives the women the strength to fight for peace. I would do the same as these women, if my husband has to go to war. Lysistrata did the right thing, because the war between the cities has a tremendous affected on everybody, not just the soldiers. I have known a woman and her husband was in the military for a very long time. She told me that he did not get to see the face of his new born baby because he died in Iraq. That must be a very painful feeling for those who have lost their husband in war. I can relate to Aristophanes thoughts and feelings. He wanted the audiences to feel the dangerousness and loneliness of war has on the soldier’s family and on themselves. But beside that, during this period, sex is also an important factor at this time. Lysistrata knew that sexuality activity would be the men’s weakness.
The plan went really well for the women but it affected the old men mentally and physically. The old men got really angry after they heard what happened in Acropolis and how their women refused to have any sexual activities with them. They got together and attacked the Acropolis. The women stayed inside the Acropolis and would not let the men come in. “So then we secure you, do we? Do we seem a fearful host?” The old men got really angry toward the women’s attitude. The women would not lower themselves from the men, even though the old men threatened to beat them up and set them on fire. “And the vile conspiratresses, plotters of such mischief dire, Pile and burn them all together in one vast and righteous pyre:” The old men thought that by doing that the women would give up and surrender. The actions and attitude of the old men got the women really angry. The women stated that “no honest man, no pious man, could do such things as you” I think that the women really hate the war that is why they are willingly to risk their life to protect Greeks. They are going against the men because they wanted the war to end. In doing so, they have to stay strong. If that was me, I would do anything to protect my man and my country. The women got beat up by the man after they argued back and forth. “O hit them hard and hit again and hit until they run away, and perhaps they’ll learn.”
Beside the plan of withhold sexuality privileges from their husband, Lysistrata also wanted the women to take over the Acropolis and the money were spent on war. War costs a lot of money, in this case was gold, and that also affected the lives of the people in Greeks. “To take first the treasury out of your management, and so stop the war through the absence of gold.” I like Lysistrata’s thinking about taking over the treasury because without the money, they cannot keep on fighting. Lysistrata and other women do love their husband. Love was the courage that helped them stay strong. The men left their home for too long and the women were worried, and the fact that war is dangerous leaded them to make such important decisions. Lysistrata said that the women have “lass to sleep her lane and never fill.” I can understand the feelings of the women to stay home alone while their husband is fighting and risking their lives. I also feel sad for the American’s soldiers that are fighting to keep peace for their families and the country. I have a lot of respect for them and I would do anything that I can, like all the women in Lysistrata, to keep the war out. War was and will always be a tragedy, and it destroys many lives and families
While reading this part of the play, I can understand the message about war that Aristophanes was giving in Lysistrata. He does not like war and how it affected many sides of the society. I think that by the way Aristophanes wrote this play, it proves that war is a waste of time, money, and other resources. He used the women in the play to address his expressions toward the war. Aristophanes gave the women many reasons why they should gather up together and bring peace back and keep Greeks in peace. The men in this play though that war is men’s business but Aristophanes does not think of it that way. I believe that Aristophanes recognized how bad war is and that is the reason why he brought this serious topic into his play. He did a well done job in proving it to the audiences.
Finally, after fighting so much to keep peace, the Spartans and Athens came to peace.
The Spartans came to Athens to settle peace, and Lysistrata was the one who talked them out. “We come to treat o' Peace.” Lysistrata planned a great way to settle the peace between the two cities. She stated that the two cities used to help each other then why should they we in war. They should keep peace between them and they all will have benefits. The Spartans and Athens both wanted some land to be their own but the other city would not give up at first. Lysistrata said that they both can share it and divide it evenly. “Now, brethren twined with mutual benefactions, Can you still war, can you suffer such disgrace? Why not be friends? What is there to prevent you?” Lysistrata also made them sign so they would keep promising to not fight each other anymore. Finally the men can take their wives home and link up. “You will pledge good behaviour and uprightness; then each man's wife is his to hustle home.” I think that it was the happiest moment for all the women when there is no more war. Last but not least, what I have learned in class and from the textbook about Greeks is similar to what happened in Lysistrata. The women are Athens has a very little voice compare to the men. Their opinions is not listened to and no matter what they do, the men still think that it is nonsense. The men believed in war and they think that only war can help them stay in peace.
Aristophanes once again, did a well done job on describing how serious affected Greeks war. War is still a serious subject even in today society. It has a tremendous effect on everybody. Nowadays, I still see a lot of soldiers died from keeping the peace. I am hoping that one day there will be no more war and there is only peace that spread all over the world. War took away so many things from too many people. Greeks is a beautiful country and it should never be any war between the cities in Greeks. “Earth is delighted now, peace is the voice of earth.” There is no need for war on this earth no matter what the reason is. Nobody needs to risk their live or their family over something that is always been a tragedy to the world.

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