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The Mass Media

UMass Boston Fall Production: Lysistrata

The+theme+of+resisting+war+and+opting+for+love+is+one+that+forms+the+premise+of+Lysistrata
The theme of resisting war and opting for love is one that forms the premise of Lysistrata

 

 

“Make love, not war” is perhaps one of the most cliché phrases of all time. The theme of resisting war and opting for love is one that forms the premise of Lysistrata. Written by Athenian playwright Aristophanes and adapted and directed by Robert Lublin, Lysistrata tells the story of women, led by the title character, swearing off sex until their men end the war with Sparta.

The war takes a great toll on the lives of the men and their relationships with their women and children. Lysistrata persuades the women of Sparta to converge and strike against sex to show their opposition to the men’s conduct of war. In one scene, a band of soldiers squares off with Lysistrata and the women. Blood is shed, and pride is humiliated.

The exasperated women proclaim, “War is the work of men,” and that the war is tearing Greece apart. As the men give in to their sexual frustrations, they hesitantly accept the women’s proposal for peace. Perhaps “make love, not war” is an ideology we should all embrace.

In this modernized version of the ancient play, a flurry of contemporary references sweep the stage, providing a dynamic link to pop culture today that Aristophanes’s original script lacked.