Symposium By Aristophanes

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The feeling of desiring another may be much older the human race as without erotic acts the species would have never survived. One of the first written explanations of this desire comes from Aristophanes’ dialogue in Plato’s Symposium where he summarises how man came to have the form he now has. In brief, man once had two faces, four arms, and four legs; they were so powerful in that form that Zeus feared them and was diminished to split them in two. The severed halves were doomed to wander the earth looking for their partner as their desire to become one again was overwhelming. And indeed, when reunited, the two truly could become one again. While this view does not hold any water in the realm of the natural sciences, the underlying truth …show more content…
Acclaimed Cohen critic Stephen Scobie remarks that the poem begins in a clinical fashion where the scene is introduced following which everything not entirely required is stripped away until only the lovers remain. Cohen follows this opening with the long passage of time in which kids move out and “Your mate dies” but all the while the lovers are confined to that same room- silent yet making their presences known with “their intense love.” “One day the door is opened to the lover’s chamber” whose inside is depicted as a garden and oasis “full of colours, smells, [and] sounds you have never known.” The singular use of lover in the above line is not an error on Cohen’s part; here is the first indication that two have become one. Later, bedded in an erotic description of the lovers, the union is asserted: “She kisses the hand beside her mouth. / It is his hand or her hand”. Important here to note, is that line 38 is not phrased as a question but as a statement of fact; Not only have the two become one but their sensations are entwined to the extent that the singular body has more than two hands as per Plato’s symposium. The human is

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