The Suitability of Style to Subject Matter in ‘The Persians’ and ‘The Histories’ 12th Grade
Both historian Herodotus and playwright Aeschylus adopt the central subject matter of the Persian Wars- a series of conflicts fought between Greek and Persian forces, which roughly began in 499 BC, and ended in 480 BC in Greek victory at the battle of Salamis. Whilst Aeschylus ‘The Persians’ due to its status as a tragedy can be seen hyperbolise and dramatise events unsuitably, Herodotus’ ‘The Histories’ exploits similar themes due to the descriptive prosaic style in which it is written. Nonetheless, it is the historical stance of Herodotus that allows for an objective and analytical take on the subject matter of The Persian Wars- one far more suitable than the intensely dramatic scenes of ‘The Persians’.
Aeschylus’ tragic structure arguably places excessive focus on the theme of hubris in exploring motives for ‘Salamis’; as does the grossly descriptive style of Herodotus text- suggesting that the styles of both texts are inappropriate in accurately conveying the subject matter of causes behind wars. Traditional tragedies were largely aimed at warning audience’s of the cycle of human folly and divine retribution; and this can be seen to conflict with Aeschylus’ aim to accurately document the Persian Wars: This is demonstrated...
Join Now to View Premium Content
GradeSaver provides access to 1178 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 9118 literature essays, 2378 sample college application essays, 399 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.
Already a member? Log in