n Akroterion - Mapping women’s bodies and the male ‘gaze’ : reconciliation in Aristophanes’ Lysistrata

Volume 63 Number 1
  • ISSN : 0303-1896
  • E-ISSN: 2079-2883
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This article returns to the debate centred around feminist readings of Aristophanes’ Lysistrata (recently aired in Akroterion by Pauw 2014) and of the Reconciliation scene, in particular, in which the terms of the peace treaty between Sparta and Athens are mapped by the male ambassadors on the naked and mute body of a woman, whose body is actually that of a male actor. Problems raised by contemporary theories of the male gaze, as applied to the Athenian theatre, and the possibly pornographic dismemberment and commodification of the female body are explored in relation both to Athenian constructs of sex, gender and sexuality in the 5th century BC, and to reception of the text and play by multi-cultural audiences and readers in contemporary South Africa.

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