This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

Catharsis In Aristotle's Poetics Essay

683 words - 3 pages

Aristotle's Poetics SummaryAristotle's Poetics seeks to address the different kinds of poetry, the structure of a good poem, and the division of a poem into its component parts. He defines poetry as a 'medium of imitation' that seeks to represent or duplicate life through character, emotion, or action. Aristotle defines poetry very broadly, including epic poetry, tragedy, comedy, dithyrambic poetry, and even some kinds of music.According to Aristotle, tragedy came from the efforts of poets to present men as 'nobler,' or 'better' than they are in real life. Comedy, on the other hand, shows a 'lower type' of person, and reveals humans to be worse than they are in average. Epic poetry, on the other hand, imitates 'noble' men like tragedy, but only has one type of meter - unlike tragedy, which can have several - and is narrative in form.Aristotle lays out six elements of tragedy: plot, character, diction, thought, spectacle, and song. Plot is 'the soul' of tragedy, because action is paramount to the significance of a drama, and all other elements are subsidiary. A plot must have a beginning, middle, and end; it must also be universal in significance, have a determinate structure, and maintain a unity of theme and purpose.Plot also must contain elements of astonishment, reversal (peripeteia), recognition, and suffering. Reversal is an ironic twist or change by which the main action of the story comes full-circle. Recognition, meanwhile, is the change from ignorance to knowledge, usually involving people coming to understand one another's true identities. Suffering is a destructive or painful action, which is often the result of a reversal or recognition. All three elements coalesce to create "catharsis," which is the engenderment of fear and pity in the audience: pity for the tragic hero's plight, and fear that his fate might befall us.When it comes to character, a poet should aim for four things. First, the hero must be 'good,' and thus manifest moral purpose in his speech. Second, the hero must have propriety, or 'manly valor.' Thirdly, the...

Find Another Essay On catharsis in Aristotle's Poetics

Analysis of Greek Tragedy Using the Aristotilean Model

1339 words - 5 pages tragic flaw the hero possesses. It is the source of pain and the downfall the hero will experience. It generally consists of mistakes the hero makes, or excesses in his behavior. Hubris, according to Aristotle means "an act that inflicts undeserved shame on the victim for the gratification of the perpetrator." Catharsis, by Aristotle's definition is emotional cleansing, a sensation that ideally overcomes an audience upon finishing watching a

Oedipus the King: Larger than Life

1058 words - 4 pages years after Sophocles had completed Oedipus the King, critics have suggested that Aristotle's definition of tragedy was based on Sophocles' play, as in fact there are several examples and quotations from Oedipus the King in Poetics. Aristotle classified and organized Sophocles' creation, dividing it into five components that from that day on are said to be the basis for all tragedies written. A tragic hero of noble birth, tragic flaw, a fall from grace, a moment of remorse, and catharsis are the makes of a good tragedy and it is safe to say that Sophocles invented this pattern and Aristotle organized it.

Aristotle's Poetics

2140 words - 9 pages suspect that Aristotle's original Poetics is a much longer work than what we have, saying that we only have the first half which mainly discusses Tragedy and that the second part, the lost one, deals with Comedy. The Poetics generally discusses ways of making art, dramatic, tragedy in particular, or epic. He approaches poetry with the same scientific method with which he treats physics and biology, defining it by means of "mimesis", or imitation, by

Matthew Arnold versus Aristotle's Poetics

3851 words - 15 pages The value of imitation: a vision of Aristotle's Poetics Aristotle wrote his Poetics thousands of years before Matthew Arnold's birth. His reasons for composing it were different from Arnold's reasons for using it as an element of his own poetic criticism. We can safely say that Arnold was inclined to use the Poetics as an inspiration for his own poetry, and as a cultural weapon in the fight for artistic and social renewal. Aristotle, by

Aristotle’s View Of Tragedy As It Pertains To Oedipus

1016 words - 4 pages Aristotle's Poetics is the first written attempt to theorize the complex experience of Greek tragedy. Aristotle used Oedipus as his chief example to define the characteristics that a tragedy should posses. He defined tragedy as an imitation of an action that is serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude ""¦in language a embellished with each kind of artistic ornament, the several kinds being found in separate parts of the play; in the

How closely does Hamlet match Aristotle's definition of a tragic hero? Can he be accepted as a modern tragic hero?

2376 words - 10 pages modes of imitation." This first point in Poetics is the basis on which he builds a large part of his theory on dramatic poetry. He believes that the true purpose of a tragedy is to arouse pity and fear in the audience to a point where it culminates in a purgation of such emotions - catharsis. In ancient Greek, the purpose of plays and dramatic performances was not to entertain, but to contribute to the good health of the community by purifying

The common element notice in Agamemnon, Hamlet and John F. Kennedy’s Secret Society Speech.Compare the similarities and differences among the thre

737 words - 3 pages their deaths. Significance . Comparing the three texts make to understand more about the characters and what kind of feelings that that they all been through . Sources. 1)http://sunnyenglishliterature.blogspot.ca/2011/11/aristotles-view-about-hamartia.html Essy name :Aristotle’s view about Hamartia, Anagnorisis, Peripeteia and Catharsis according to Poetics Monday, 7 November 2011 Line number 43. 2) “ Aristotle's Theory of Tragedy

traglear King Lear as an Arthur Miller Tragedy

1216 words - 5 pages liars, and only Cordelia truly loves him, he starts to go mad. In his better moments he remembers to curse Goneril and Regan and lament his suffering, while in worse moments his utterance hardly make sense. Both are passive reactions to his misfortune, not active struggle for re-establishing his dignity. Arthur Miller's theory fails to account for the tragicness of King Lear, but Aristotle's Poetics provides us with a much more satisfying

Explaining Greeks to Geeks

706 words - 3 pages Aristotle wrote the Poetics in the fourth century BCE as an account for his observations of the defining characteristics of tragedies and epic poetry. In this work, Aristotle defines catharsis as “purging” and “cleansing” of the emotion of the audience at the end of a tragedy or epic poem. Such feelings of pity or fear towards one character or one group of characters are caused because of their unfortunate circumstance throughout the plot of the

Tragedy And Aristotle

2064 words - 8 pages tragedy in his Poetics, which were based on these classic dramas. Aristotle called Euripides, author of Medea, "the most tragic of the poets because his plays were the most moving" (Ancient Greek). Though modern tragedies follow different pretexts from the classics, they still follow basic principles. Fences, a modern drama by August Wilson, is a tragedy because it is easily comparable to Medea which is consistent with Aristotle's prescriptions.First

Macbeth - From your studies of "Macbeth" show to what extent you think Shakespeare followed and built upon the classical tradition of dramatic tragedy

1545 words - 6 pages individual, even evil nature of the protagonist.According to Aristotle's "Poetics" a tragedy should be 'confined to a single revolution of the sun'. "Macbeth", however, takes place over several months, maybe even years. Aristotle also stated that a tragedy should be written in verse. "Macbeth" complies with this rule as I have explained below.Aristotle also states that tragedies should have unity of place.The tragedy of Oedipus takes place in the

Similar Essays

Aristotle's Poetics: Catharsis And Rasas Essay

1299 words - 5 pages only the mind but the overall psychological, physiological and spiritual states of the audience experience. Works Cited Aristotle. The Poetics of Aristotle. Trans. S. H. Butcher. Pennsylvania State University Press, 2000. Print. Bharata. The Nāṭyaśāstra. Trans. Adya Rangacharya. New Delhi: Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers, 2007. Print. Gilbert, Allan H. "The Aristotelian Catharsis." The Philosophical Review 35.2 (1926): 301-14. Web. 5 Apr. 2014. Lucas, F.L. Tragedy in Relation to Aristotle's Poetics. London: Hogarth Press, 1928. Print. Swann, Darius L. "Indian and Greek Drama: Two Definitions." Comparative Drama 3.2 (1969): 110-9. Web. 5 Apr. 2014.

In Aristotle's Poetics Essay

2692 words - 11 pages In his Poetics, Aristotle outlined the ingredients necessary for a good tragedy, and he based his formula on what he considered to be the perfect tragedy, Sophocles's Oedipus the King. According to Aristotle, a tragedy must be an imitation of life in the form of a serious story that is complete in itself; in other words, the story must be realistic and narrow in focus. A good tragedy will evoke pity and fear in its viewers, causing the viewers

The Beautiful In Kant's Third Critique And Aristotle's Poetics

3413 words - 14 pages passing reference to catharsis in Aristotle's Poetics. It appears in the following definitional passage on tragedy: A tragedy, then, is an imitation of an action that is serious and also, as having a magnitude, complete in itself; in language with pleasurable accessories. . . with incidents arousing pity and fear, wherewith to accomplish its catharsis of these emotions. (12) I want to suggest that this definition of the nature of tragedy by

The Concept Of Comedy In Aristophanes’ Acharnian

2614 words - 10 pages obviously believed that tragedy could reach that goal much easier. And he even did not discuss comedy with more details in his Poetics.The medical catharsis (catharsis as purgation) of Politics is also expected in the tragic performances, as both Poetics and Politics speak of the catharsis of pity and fear and Politics has left the fuller explanation of the catharsis in general to Poetics. Tragic catharsis, however, cannot be reduced to the