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The current essay focuses on “Monster Culture: Seven Theses” since I found the analysis not only extraordinary understandable, but very convincing. Every thesis made me comprehend more and more reasons why “monsters” are perceived in such an undesirable and frightening way. It is difficult for me to understand that the monsters have more to themselves than what keeps me from the night sleeping after a frightening movie. In Thesis VII, it is explained that we are the monsters’ creators. Monsters acquire their life means from human beings. If we needed to get away from them, we could not if we strained. If we struggle to get away from them, they come back again even smarter since they learned the way to live from us. For instance, in Frankenstein, Victor created Frankenstein and struggled to get away from him. Frankenstein learnt how humans worked and then came back seeking for his creator with much wisdom that interrogated him. In this case, the paper explores and evaluates “Seven Theses” and the analysis of Prologue and Parodos in Euripides’ Bacchae.
According to Cohen’s Thesis VII, it is understandable that people have made these “monsters” and that they have inner monsters. Fundamentally, one’s internal monster is the individual that needs everything that one does not acquire themselves. It can be illustrated by anything as stupid as taking a candy from a baby. I understand that whenever little sisters and brothers have candies, I need a piece or the entire thing. Thus, “taking candy from the baby” is known as terrible individual performing a monster function. Additionally, not only did I understand that actions could be monstrous but one’s identity could too. I used my knowledge of sociology status since we studied about the “nonstandard” and the “Others”, and why they are observed as such through the eyes of the society (Butler 67). It is stated that monsters have this account and rarely does community take its time to comprehend everything that is different. Individually, I thought of various aspects of my identity that would be “monstrous” according to others. There are different characters such as a fervent feminist and a pleased supporter of the gay rights (Gilmore).
In his "Monster Culture (Seven Theses)," Cohen details monsters as stereotypical terrifying human beings that we usually envision. His form of the monstrous actions is a kind of lessons to us, recurring when we make wrong decisions, or when we are careless.
While one’s goal could be to get away from the lingering monsters, it becomes nearly impossible. Just before a person is about to surmount the problem of monsters, they reappear and escape later when we do not suppose it. Their constant recurrence is figurative and we incline to step recurrently over our inclined limits, giving them the chance to confront us when we are nearly susceptible. The monstrous creature embodies every castaway, difference, and irregularity that our community presently looks down on (Cohen 18).
However, the majority of people struggle to fit and resemble someone else; monster challenges the norm, desiring to stand out unique. It is the section of his plan to instill a sense of terror into people, since if they are not able to classify it, it has an advantage over them. While people do fear monsters, being in the presence is nearly a type of thrilling to them. One is hastily filled with fear since they have the belief that the good will triumph in the culmination, and that fear is only temporary (Butler 72). Nonetheless, this naive insight is what maintains the monsters. The monstrousness is created out of our naivety and foolishness. Although monsters are meant to fight us and be referred to as villains, they are the reality of our creation. Without us, monsters could not have determination for the existence.
The Bacchae: Prologue
Conventionally, the initial song or direct discourse in the Greek theatre establishes the history and background of the play; it clarifies any probable misperception and then turns into the narrative. The prologue predicts the general structure and outcome of the story; however, it conceals a few key twists and details. The Bacchae prologue recounts materials that could have been familiar to the audiences of the period: the cult, history and the origin of Dionysian worship. However, Euripides is known for his refinements and innovations of the classical literary civilization, and he shows these talents through his shrewd utilization of the prologue and reorganization of the Dionysian legend (Kristeva 77).
Instead of using the prologue merely to sketch the key moral of the narration, or create the pre-eminence of the gods, verbalizing human acts, Euripides utilizes the prologue to launch Dionysus as the direct human cause. Dionysus, being only the mysterious and superior god, appears here in the mortal type as the character in the play. Euripides's choice to present Dionysus as mortal is not only a theatrical tool, but also the comment on the type of this multifaceted god that he represents. Euripides is signalling the central responsibilities that recognition and disguise play in the drama. It also indicates the significance of epiphanies, masking, masks and the shape-changing in the myths and cults of Dionysus (Cohen 54). As the god born from the mortal mother, Dionysus derives from Olympian stature and the human universe; Euripides climaxes this by showing both inside and outside the play. It is possible for Dionysus to talk, interact and walk with mortals since the very intimate and communal emotions are brought forward in his congregations by his influence.
Thereby, the prologue Euripides presents the center of Dionysus's nature: the ambiguity. The gods only embody madness, belief, destruction and celebration, but in his actions similar mutability validates. The Pentheus punishment, for instance, proves gruesome, terrible and excessive; it is brought forth in an exceptionally subtle, gradual and devious manner. Lastly, the prologue puts audiences in the privileged place by allowing it in Dionysus's secrets. No other character in the story understands who the Stranger from the Lydia is, and this theatrical irony intensifies the sense of inevitable tragedy in the already powerful story (Gilmore).
The Bacchae: Parodos
In the Euripides's period, the extensive utilization of chorus became unfashionable, yet Euripides offered the device a new life by combing it with the element of the play. The chorus is usually a unified dancing and singing body detached from the central acts of the story. Euripides associated these characters with the feature of the Bacchae, an intent cult that adored Dionysus through a dance and a song. The refrain became the Bacchae, and vice-versa (Cohen 74). Euripides allows the chorus to fulfil its classical purpose, but also offers it a profound narrative connotation. On the one hand, the refrain comments on the events of the story, provides an ethical voice and associates the parts of the story temporally. In The Bacchae, it is given a responsibility to describe the Dionysian resources from within, expressing common responses. Most significantly, it heightens the story, passion and hysteria of the drama through music and dance. The chorus serves to extol benign, celebratory and joyful side of Dionysus. They are groups of willing followers of Dionysus that followed a Stranger from the East to the Thebes. While their tunes are murderous at other times, their acts are not (Gilmore).
However, the refrain is not the only group of female worshippers of the god. The furious maenads on Mt. Cithairon are other examples of Dionysus's cult. The divinity has driven such women mad alongside their will, and represents a violent disagreement with social organization. The maenads in the counterpoint to the refrain are neither demonstrated openly on the stage, nor offered any voice. Only the furious, tragic and solitary Agate is brought on the stage. On the top of the hill, those women exemplify the wilder, destructive and darker aspect of Dionysus. The anxiety between these oppositional, but harmonizing, groups of female echoes the fundamental anxiety in the drama. Explicitly, the tension between Pentheus, the core of order, and Dionysus, the forerunner of the disordered recklessness, grows (Cohen 84).
In conclusion, monsters acquire their life means from human beings. If one needed to get away from them, they could not. If an individual struggles to get away from them, they come back again even smarter since they learned the way to live from the individual. The inner monster is stimulating since it makes much sense. Fundamentally, an internal monster is the individual that needs everything that a person does not acquire. It can be illustrated by anything as stupid as taking a candy from a baby. These monsters “ask us to re-evaluate our cultural assumptions about race, gender, sexuality, our perception of difference, our tolerance for its expression.”
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