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 Aristotle's History and Poetry

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Kim78



Posts : 4
Join date : 2010-12-15

PostSubject: Aristotle's History and Poetry   Thu Dec 16, 2010 3:46 pm

Poetry= what could be; History=what is
This is just the beginning of a brainstorm, I will probably come back and fill in some gaps later

Iliad
-subject matter: the fantastical, heroes, gods, battle, romanticized version of war
-Gods are active in battle. They fight humans, hatch plans, intervene to save their favorites, etc...
-skims over basics of human life: natural disasters, eating (other than in ritual) because these are not grandiose things
- Humans (Diomedes and Achilles) have ability to gift in God-like ways, Diomedes even hurts Gods, and taunts them
- Poetry in Iliad, deals with possible, great things
-simplistic view of war--only between two states


Herodotus
-much more dry than the iliad in subject matter, offers us events with explanations (e.g. possible explanations for floods, Book 2 20-26)
- Gods are not named, and they are not portrayed actively participating
-We are given "facts" and rationale for Trojan War that is not spectacular: abductions of Io, Europa, and Helen, are rationalized

Thucydides
- no "sexy tales"
- dry facts, with little mention of the Gods, or superstition
- deals with specifics of political games the war of the Athenians and the Spartans, along with all the smaller states that got swept into it Platae,Thrace, Delos, etc...
-accepts the role of disease, luck, and other such things in war--the plague that struck Athens during the war against Sparta
-unlike Homer where the changing tides of war are the wills of the Gods
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