Anger metaphors in Seneca's Medea

Title: Anger metaphors in Seneca's Medea
Author: Bán, Katalin
Source document: Graeco-Latina Brunensia. 2020, vol. 25, iss. 2, pp. 5-15
  • ISSN
    1803-7402 (print)
    2336-4424 (online)
Type: Article

Notice: These citations are automatically created and might not follow citation rules properly.

Seneca's tragedies are characterized by widespread use of metaphors, emotions and personality traits of heroes and heroines often appear in imagery representations. In my study, I intend to examine the central anger metaphors and pictorial representations of Seneca's Medea, that is, the metaphors of various manifestations of the sea storm, the fire and the snake which are represented and in many cases intertwined with each other in the character of the heroine. Medea is a drama of the anger, the destructive forces in the soul, the revenge, which Seneca often expresses with the use of these pictorial representations and compares them to the destructive forces of nature. These metaphors inspired by nature highlight an important point in Seneca's philosophy: the linkage of the cosmic and the individual. My aim is to highlight Seneca's Stoic interpretation of virtuous life through these metaphors: if we do not live according to Stoic philosophy and in harmony with nature, the balance of the soul might be shaken, and emotions might take control over our rational decision-making ability. In the tragedy Seneca creates subversely a counterworld to the world of Stoic virtue, and metaphors are applied not only to the different manifestations of human nature as direct comparisons, but also to express Stoic ideals. Their various aspects are complex and versatile in Seneca's prose and poetry, thus it is also worth examining his prose works to completely understand their role.
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