Quilt: Drama

VCCS Litonline Introduction to Literature
English 112 (English Composition II)

page 4 of 20

What would Aristotle say?

Which of the following situations contain the necessary elements for tragic drama?

(Note: if you want to read the full text of Aristotle's comments on tragedy, click on his image above. The link will take you to the relevant chapter of the Poetics.)

A radio-controlled, pilotless plane crashes into a residential area, killing six members of a family as they sleep.

A star college quarterback, recently diagnosed with leukemia and playing what he knows is his last game, blows a crucial play, causing his team to lose.

Diana, Princess of Wales, is killed with her current lover in a Paris car crash.

Determined to eliminate corruption in government, the first woman president of the United States, is impeached and removed from office when it is discovered that she is protecting the man she loves from prosecution for bribery.

A high school honor student, recently awarded a major scholarship to attend Yale University, gets drunk at a graduation party and is involved in an automobile accident that kills his girlfriend.


Okay? Are you getting the picture? If not, you might want to go back to the definition and review it. Otherwise, let's move on to the play that Aristotle considered a supreme example of Tragedy:

Oedipus Rex.

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