1. Discuss the role of the family in two of the following works: Aeschylus’ Oresteia, Aristophanes’ The Clouds, or Plato’s Republic.
`Family ‘ in Plato ‘s Republic
Plato ‘s Republic upholds the concept of communism , it deems the notions of family and property as `selfish ‘ tendencies and therefore tries to do away with them . The state is centered in the city , so as to better ensure the allegiance of all citizens to the ideals of the state Families in the traditional sense will be replaced by the common family of the state . The state itself is one big family , one fraternity
The family would be abolished , but the sex instinct has to be satisfied [banner_entry_middle]
and put to use in a proper way in to produce new citizens . In Plato ‘s communistic regime , with the abolition of the private property there would cease to be any place for private lives ‘ in the lives of men and women . Socrates , in the book , envisions the elimination of private , sexual relationships between women and men . The essential purpose of sex is now only to bring forth superior quality children . For such a thing to happen , the right of procreation will be apparently given by lot – though actually planned by the state . Plato proposes the substituting of the family with a system of eugenic breeding , very much akin to the pattern of breeding that normally takes in connection with domestic animals . There would be mating festivals during which the Rulers will decide which couples should be allowed to mate the children produced as a result of these sexual congresses would be looked after in state nurseries . They will be raised in common , separated from their biological parents
`Family ‘ in Aristophanes ‘ Clouds
In Clouds , Strepsiades and his son Pheidippides are a family all on their own . Through them , Aristophanes draws particular attention to the relationship between fathers and their children within the family institution
Strepsiades is the frustrated father of Pheidippides , because he has to pay for his son ‘s debts . He curses his son ‘s obsession with horse racing as the plague ‘ that is ruining him . Strepsiades position can be readily identified with by many parents of today it is not uncommon to find parents who have been adversely affected by their teenagers frivolous lifestyles . However Strepsiades mainly blames his aristocratic wife for corrupting their son . He does not acknowledge that he too shares the blame for his son ‘s failings
Pheidippides grows up caught between the conflicting attitudes of his working-class father and his upper-class mother . His mother has a dream for him “When you grow up , you ‘ll be a rich man like my father Megacles and drive a chariot through the city wearing a beautiful golden robe In contrast , his father has a more realistic vision “When you ‘re big you ‘ll be just like your father and drive goats down from the mountains wearing a lovely leather jerkin (p . 7 . Pheidippides thus develops conflicting ideas about his future . Eventually he starts living the lifestyle of the working class , but spends money on horses , in keeping with the decadent ways of the wealthy… [banner_entry_footer]
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