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This essay asks you to use ideas from Aristotle’s Poetics as a way to discuss pl

by | Oct 8, 2021 | English | 0 comments


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This essay asks you to use ideas from Aristotle’s Poetics as a way to discuss plot structure of a contemporary film or show (something released no earlier than 2000; the more recent, the better; you can use films and TV shows) and its connection to one or both of the Sophocles plays, Oedipus and Antigone, that we are reading. For your subject, I would recommend something recent–something that you are currently watching, for example. You can use a film, but you could also use a televised drama that takes the form of a mini-series or even a single episode of a show. For example, if I were writing this, I might want to write about something I’ve watched recently. I might start with a list that includes films like Cruella and Black Widow and shows like Loki or The Mandalorian. I might even want to focus on one or two specific episodes of one of these shows and consider ways that I see evidence of Aristotle’s ideas. While these shows and films aren’t necessarily “tragic” in the same way as Sophocles’ plays, they still work with these ideas of reversal, recognition, and error in ways that I could explore productively in an essay. In fact, that might be how I would start this–I would use my Writer’s Notebook to sketch out connections in these different films/shows and the concepts we’re working with. That would help to provide me with a sense of which would be the easiest to write about. In addition to the plays, we will be looking at some of Aristotle’s ideas about tragedy that were heavily influenced by Sophocles. Of particular interest are two concepts, peripeteia (a reversal of fortune) and anagnorisis (a recognition) that Aristotle identifies as central to tragedy. The related concept of the hero’s error (hamartia, or “mistake”; sometimes described in the case of Oedipus as a tragic flaw of hubris, or pride) is also important to the way that Aristotle defines the tragic. For this essay, you are identifying and discussing one or all of these concepts (peripeteia, anagnorisis, hamartia, hubris) through a direct comparison of your film/show and one or both of the plays. Some of you may find that focusing on one of these concepts provides enough material for a thorough and interesting comparison. Others may want to work with two or more of the concepts as a way of providing a clear structure. It is important that you are using and discussing evidence from the texts. In addition, make sure to cite evidence specifically from the sources that we are using. For this essay, then, you will need: -At least one quote from the Sophocles introduction (681-686) in our book. -At least three quotes total from the versions of Oedipus the King (687-724) and/or Antigone (725-755) in our book. -At least two quotes from the e-book version of Aristotle’s Poetics available through the FSU library ( (Links to an external site.)). Cite information from chapters 6-14 (this is pages 5-12 in the e-book). -At least three quotes total from your film/show. I recommend using a Close Captioning/Subtitles feature as a way to accurately write down dialogue and important lines. The Purdue Owl offers a good overview of MLA conventions for in-text citations and works cited pages: (Links to an external site.) You will submit your completed essay through the TurnItIn link here in Canvas. The completed essay needs to be in the 750-1000 word range for the essay itself. You can go over 1000 words, but need to meet the 750 minimum for full credit.


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