Besides "inventing" Democracy, the ancient Greeks also invented Drama. If you would wish to read the whole play, click here. As you mark up this short dialogue from the play by Euripides, Do a couple of things:
First, count the number of arguments made by THESEUS in favor of Democracy. Place the number in margin by the paragraph or paragraphs in which they appear.
Second, do the same while examining the Theban Herald's arguments.
Third, add text notes concerning your agreements and/or disagreements with each of the arguments and upload these into your Dropbox. Remember you can convert the .pdf file into a .doc or .docx, and work in those if you wish.
Finally, review the two addresses which you watched and read for last Thursday's class, and review your notes. Are there any arguments in the Theban Dialogues which you find echoed in the two videos? If so underline them in two colors of your choice, and indicate what colors represent President Trump and Former President Obama.
The modern United States is not the only democracy to fight many wars. So did ancient Greece, the first of the European democracies. Take a look at the video above. We'll see more of Socrates, later, and also the Meleans.
For this day we're going to take a look at two documents which "look" the same, but are very different. The Suppliants, which we are reviewing is an excerpt from a play. Perhaps I'll call on a couple of would-be actors in class to enact it for us, the audience. As one can understand, the playwright, Euripides, has a point of view here. One of the persons in the dialogue favors democracy, the other doesn't. I think you can figure out which is whic.
Be Warned! The Melian Dialogue isn't an easy read. The translation is old, and the language complicated. You can do it, but leave yourself time to do it. While this looks very much like a play script, it is more history by Thucydides, who wrote what we read as Pericles Funeral Oration. This does not mean that he copied what was said word for word. But he has a reputation for being as accurate as possible. I don't want to give away the plot, so I won't. You'll know what happened to whom and the excuses for it by the time you've read your way through it.
On one side of the bargaining Table sit the Melian representatives and on the other side, the Athenian representatives. Note one thing: ALL this happens out of sight and mind from the ordinary population of Meles.
After you've read the dialogue, watch the dramatic presentation of it in the video to the left.
The video on the right presents a contemporary analysis of the video by a young man who looks to be a recent college graduate--perhaps he's still in college. He gives you his take on the the dispute between Meles and Athens..
Analyze this the same way you've analyzed The Suppliants. Here are a couple of other things to think about.
1.Does anything the Melians say change the thinking of the Athenian delegation at all?
2.Identify the different arguments for neutrality presented by the Melian delegation. Use a markup color of your choice. Don't forget to make an index of what the color or colors you use mean.
3.Put in the same position, would you take the stance the Melians took at the end of the negotiations? Why or why not? (Try to ignore the outcome as you do this--remember that the Melian Ambassadors didn't know what was going to happen to their island and its population). Use a sticky note for this.
4Was it fair for the Melian Ambassadors to exclude the rest of the population from the decision making process? Why or why not? Would it likely have made a difference?
Then Comes Part II, the Melian Dialogue
Once you've completed the assignments, add them to your drop box. Don't forget to hit the submit button.