Tragedy in Aristotle’s Poetics
a) Aristotle wrote that a tragedy must have unity of plot. What does this statement mean? By this Aristotle means that the plot must be structurally self-contained, with the incidents bound together by internal necessity, each action leading inevitably to the next with no outside intervention. According to Aristotle, the worst kinds of plots are “‘episodic,’ in which the episodes or acts succeed one another without probable or necessary sequence”; the only thing that ties together the events in such a plot is the fact that they happen to the same person. b) What are the criteria for Aristotle's definition of the tragic hero? The tragic hero is a man of noble stature. He is not an ordinary man, but a man with outstanding quality and greatness about him. His own destruction is for a greater cause or principle.
-Usually of noble birth
-Hamartia – a.k.a. the tragic flaw that eventually leads to his downfall. -Peripeteia – a reversal of fortune brought about by the hero’s tragic flaw -His actions result in an increase of self- awareness and self-knowledge -The audience must feel pity and fear for this character.
c) What roles do reversal and discovery play in the development of plot in Aristotelian tragedy? All plots have some pathos (suffering), but a complex plot includes reversal and recognition. d) What is the importance of pathos to the objective and purpose of tragedy, and what emotion(s) does it bring out in the spectator? Pathos is important to the objective ad purpose of the tragedy because it gives the spectator a feeling towards the tragic hero and their tragedy. Usually feelings of pity or fear. e) Discuss catharsis in terms of the effects tragedy seeks to produce in the spectator? Catharsis helps the spectator understand the tragic hero by helping the spectator be able to experience/relate to the words and the actions of the tragic hero. f) What is the relation, if any, drawn by Aristotle between spectacle...
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