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The Tragedy Of Jason Essay

939 words - 4 pages

In American literature today, society only accepts a hero if they have superpowers, weapons/ gadgets, or fight the villain in the name of freedom, justice, and the American way. So, if a hero is not faster than a speeding bullet, does not turn green when they get angry, or is not Batman chances are they are not as often heard of or discussed. However, In Greek literature, although they do respect the same heroic aspect of superhuman strength that we do today, did not label their heroes the same way we do now. While the modern hero is only required to defend the innocent, to be called a Greek hero one was required to have a divine birth, do heroic feats at a young age, be sent to perform ...view middle of the document...

After he meets Medea he still does not perform a heroic feat by himself; he requires the help of Medea and her sorcery from then until the end of his journey. This is the way Euripides devalues Jason’s heroic Journey, by pointing out to his audience that Jason never did any of these things alone. Many times in the play Medea says she is the one who saved his life and been the hero ever since they met. In fact, Medea is the daughter of Helios and also performed all the heroic deeds that Jason claimed to have done with the help of Aphrodite, making her a better Greek hero than Jason from the beginning.
Medea brings these types of comparisons of heroes to light in big ways. Jason is never able to complete his task or perform his heroic feats, because his story doesn’t allow it. Yet, Jason still acts like a Greek hero by not being very moral or feeling responsible for the actions he has taken against Medea. Heroes in classical Greek do act this way towards the people around them and are given the right to act that way, because true Greek heroes are not required to have any mortal morals or niceties. While Medea has the traits of a Greek hero and alludes to the heroic hardships she faced in Jason’s stead during the journey back to Greece to prove it. However, Medea cannot claim the Greek title, because she is not Greek. Jason and Medea are the loosely defined heroes of the play. So in order to create an even better contrast of true and false heroes, Euripides includes the Greek hero Ageus, father of theseus, who is considered a true hero in mythology...

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