Notes on Medea (Lines 1388 – end)

This passage is from the very end of Medea and is thus very important to the play and its interpretation as a whole. This is a continuation of the confrontation between Jason and Medea, following Medea’s murder of the children and with their corpses laid upon her chariot. Medea has refused to let Jason bury the children. The children function as symbols of Medea and Jason’s marriage and future together, which have been terminated by Medea’s actions. Therefore this scene is a chance to present the final conflict between protagonist and antagonist in the form of an alternating series of single lines, known as stichomythia. This is a common device in Greek tragedy and in this passage it aids to convey the tension between the two character’s at the play’s climax, while also providing insight into the character’s feelings and separate points of view.

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