Why do plays well over two millennia old still speak to audiences today? This program traces Greek theater from ancient harvest rites to the golden age of Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, and Aristophanes. Key scenes from Antigone, Oedipus Tyrannus, Medea, and Lysistrata show how these works remain relevant by exploring the timeless themes of honor, class, gender, sexuality, and politics. Essential concepts such as catharsis, hamartia, and the use of masks and a chorus are discussed (57 min).
Video addresses core topics in ancient philosophy such as freedom and fate, permanence and change, happiness, the nature of the cosmos, and the immortality of the soul. Concepts as articulated by key figures including Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, Heraclitus, Pythagoras, and the Milesian and Eleatic philosophers—in combination with quotations drawn from Plato’s Republic, Aristotle’s Physics, and other influential sources—make this program an excellent tool for building a solid understanding of Western philosophy. Part of the series Great Ideas of Philosophy I. (51 minutes)