Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Our Political Roots: Examples of Ancient Greek Rhetoric
Oedipus Rex Rhetoric
Slippery Slope (page 20): I vent it all on you. Yes, you, you planned this thing and I suspect you of the very murder even, all but the actual stroke. And if you had your eyes I’d say you played that chief part too.”
Ad hominem (page 19): “You miserable old man! You’d drive a stone to fury. Do you still refuse? Your flinty heart set in hopeless stubbornness?”
Slippery Slope (page 22): “So this is what he wants, Creon the loyal, Creon so long my friend! Stealing up to overthrow and snatch.”
Either – or argument (Page 37) “It’s come to that? My banishment or death preferred to what you want for him?”
Hasty generalization (page 46): “Rest assured; his account was that, exactly that he cannot cancel what he said.”
Simile (page 15) “Such ties swear me to his side as if he were my father.”
Simile (page 23) “Suborning sorcerers, like this vamper-up of plots, this hawking conjurer, a genius born blind with eyes for gain.”
Verbal Irony (page 23) “I say you see and still are blind.”
Hyperbole (page 24) “Nor I have ever summoned you if I’d known you’d go foaming at the mouth.”
Symbol (page 25) “Your royal road to ruin.”
Protagonist: (page 5) “King Oedipus, the sovereign of our land” The story is about Oedipus
Plot (page 11) “a search which you and I together will peruse. My designs could not be suited more: to avenge the god and Thebes in a single blow.” What the story ids about and what the problem is.
Epiphany: (page 9) “Here”, says the god. “seek and you shall find. Pnly that escapes which never was pursued.” A god actually said something and manifested itself.
Conflict: (page 19) “You mean, you know and will not say? You’d rather sacrifice us all and let the city rot?” Oedipus and Tiresias are having a problem. They are conflicting because Tiresias won’t tell Oedipus what he wants to know.
Connotation: (page 49) “This lady is his wife and mother… of his children.” Jocasta is Oedipus’s wife, mother of his children, AND his mother.
Imagery: (page 51) “… this jangled mongering with birds on high…” puts and image in your head.
Diction: (page 68) “My sorrow heaves, my lips lament, which drew their breath from you and now must quiver and be still.” Very poetic language.
Climax: (Page 66) “She, she gave it to you?” The crisis is reached and conflict/plot is basically resolved.
Contrast: (page 33) “Test me. Go to Delphi. Ask” Creon is cool and confident while Oedipus is flaming and hot tempered. They contrast with each other in the scene.
Tone: (page 24) “Dear Gods! Must I listen to this thing?” This tone of the argument/scene/book: questioning, anger, and disbelief.