Characters and action:
none as such; instead there is a scene:
(PAEDAGOGUS, ORESTES, ELECTRA), based on the idea of recognition (P & O) and non-recognition (Orestes & Electra)
Each has a monologue; Orestes' & Electra's are of some lyric quality. Key words are `avenger' (P),
`justice' (O), and `unjustly' and `vengeance...for murder' (E).
CHORUS of Mycenaean women (`girls') and ELECTRA (121-338)
Chorus is hostile to Clytamnestra & Aegistheus, but wishes Electra would get over the murder
. Electra will not forget or forgive. Chorus suggests that her misfortunes therefore are her own `fault'.
Electra wants `death for death in justice' (248)
Curses (210, 291); `one cannot be moderate nor restrained nor pious either'.
ELECTRA & CHRYSOTHEMIS
C: "All the food I need is a quiet conscience.
E: "Practice your flattery...so empty witted."
CHORUS: predicts `Justice' at Electra's hands!
predicts `the bronze-shod Fury'; Myrtilus & the family curse (507-513)
CLYTAMNESTRA & ELECTRA
E says C's motive was `seduction of that bad man' (562). E's psychologicalstate (618-622) and her explanation of it: hate on part of Clyt. compels her against her will.
PAEDAGOGUS, CLYTAMNESTRA, ELECTRA
The beginning of the plot to suggest that Orestes is dead--prepared in Prologue scene
ELECTRA & CHORUS (in place of a stasimon)
E still thinks Orestes is dead; death is a favor for her, not something to dread.
ELECTRA & CHRYSOTHEMIS (871-989)
Evidence from Chrysothemis that maybe O is not dead (lock of hair at the grave)
. Electra is determined to avenge father AND brother (986-7)
Contempt for C's temperance.
CHORUS, ELECTRA, CHRYSOTHEMIS
Electra lacks prudence, and is assuming a `man's role.'
Discussion of justice and vengeance:
"Even justice brings harm with it." (1042)
CHORUS: Furies, doom, destruction
Aegistheus & Clytamnestra are the Furies (1080)
ORESTES & ELECTRA: recognition at last (1098-1321)
Signet ring (1221)
She persuades him to vengeance & murder
PAEDAGOGUS, ORESTES, ELECTRA punishment for crime
Orestes `becomes Agamemnon' in Electra's thought:
`Bless you, my father, for in you I think I see my father.'(1360)
Electra prays to Apollo (1376-84)
Approach of the War God, Ares (anticipation): Orestes `the champion of dead men'
ELECTRA, CHORUS, VOICE OF CLYTAMNESTRA
CHORUS: `blood to answer blood' "I cannot blame them."
ELECTRA, ORESTES, AEGISTHEUS, CHORUS
Electra: `Kill him as quickly as you can.'
Orestes: `Justice shall be taken directly on all who act above the Law--justice by killing.'
CHORUS: freedom comes from this deed to the House of Atreus (!??)
John Paul Adams, CSUN