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Aristophanes, Four Comedies

             Four Comedies, written by Aristophanes, is a book composed of the following four plays: "Lysistrata", "The Congresswomen", "The Acharnians" and "The Frogs". A common theme in the four plays is conflict and how they deal with it, through forming coalitions or favoring peace. Another common thread written in the plays deals with aliens, defined as people who are not citizens. Ideas are given showing how the government can fix the problem. Aristophanes uses comedy in these plays in order to portray his views and make his point.
             "Lysistrata" is the first play in the book. Lysistrata summons the women from Athens and women representatives from neighboring Sparta and Beotia to meet in front of the Acropolis at Athens. The purpose of this meeting is to get all the women to support her plan to end a war that she finds to be senseless. .
             Kleonike, the first woman to get to the meeting, is curious about the purpose of the meeting. Lysistrata fills her in on her plan to have all women abstain from sex to convince the men to end the war. Kleonike is skeptical about this because she does not believe it's the woman's job to interfere with these issues. In her view, women are inferior and all they can do is to be attractive for the men. Lysistrata informs her and all the other women that viewpoint supports her plan. Her plan stresses that the women renounce sex altogether until the war has ended. The women are not totally convinced that this will work, but after some convincing they agree to do it. .
             Lysistrata had all the women repeat an oath, stating, 1) they will dress sensuously; 2) refrain from sex; and 3) to have sex only if forced, promising to perform poorly and refuse all positions which might enhance sexually activity. Everyone took the oath and the meeting was adjourned. After the meeting, the Athenian women entered the Acropolis and locked the gates in order to keep the men from getting to the treasury and being able to pay for a war they find senseless.

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