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Themes

Medea sharply criticizes the male-dominated society of its time. Its protagonist is a radical anti-heroine who continues to inspire both admiration and fear. We sympathize with Medea's downtrodden state and applaud her strength and intelligence. However, her bloody and vengeful rebellion shocks and unsettles audiences even to this day. The play can be seen as a cautionary tale to oppressors as well as the oppressed.

Questions About Women and Femininity

  1. How can Medea be seen as symbol of feminine revolt?
  2. What are the major complaints Medea raises about the treatment of women?
  3. What hierarchy exists among the women in Medea?
  4. Is Medea still pertinent to the issues facing women today?

Chew on This

Try on an opinion or two, start a debate, or play the devil’s advocate.

Medea is symbolic of the intelligent woman caged by patriarchy.

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