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The Slave’s Voice

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Chapter Summary

This chapter considers how the slaves' words and characters illuminate those of their masters. Much of what has been written on slavery in Euripides has to do with the captive women taken in the Trojan War. Slaves in tragedy, especially in Aeschylus and Euripides, are humanized by being shown to form the relationships of care and love with their masters that are officially denied to them because of their servile status. A hierarchy is established from the beginning: Slave/Mistress, Wife/ Husband, Jason/the royals; Humans/Gods. Medea's speech to Jason in the fourth episode is masterful. She represents herself in this metaphor of the domination of reason over passion that reveals how deep-seated the justification of slavery is in the Greek psyche as using logos to master her passion.

Keywords: Aeschylus; Euripides; Jason; Medea's speech; Trojan war; woman slave



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