Sam's Reviews > Three Theban Plays

Three Theban Plays by Sophocles
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Nov 09, 2009

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Read in November, 2009

This is the first book in David and my three book reading program on Greek history and culture. We decided to read three books about the same time period in ancient Greece. We are focusing on how the Greeks explained human behavior. This was a great book to start with. It has a decent explanation of the Greek plays and where they came from and how they operated and who attended and etc. This was very useful, but in this version could have been a little better with more analysis on the cultural impact, but it was adequate for what we were doing. We decided to just read the first play which is Oedipus the King. It was a very quick read. I had forgotten how graphic and violent it is. David seemed unphased by it. He did a very good job of understanding how Greek society used the gods to explain human behavior and the role of fate and destiny in human lives. We just briefly touched on how this will influence their thinking of proper behavior in society, but we will come back to this. It was intersting to me to have just read this after Outliers. David and I discussed and compared their ideas or perceptions of human free will. Though Gladwell would clearly not argue for the existence of the gods his acceptance of human free will and the ancient Greek understanding of free will had some real similarities.

Well, David and I are now on to reading Republic by Plato. I am excited to see where this takes us.
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