Lysistrata : Hello there , I am sure you have heard of me , haven’t you ?
Curious Reader : Not really , who are you?
Lysistrata : (disgusted) You moderns are such blockheads . I am the heroine of one of the most notorious plays penned by Aristophanes.
CR: Why is it notorious?
Lysistrata : For its blatant sexuality of course .
CR: An ancient Greek porno!!
Lysistrata : Of course not!! You idiot!! It depicts how women could have singlehandedly stopped the peloponnesian war and saved Greece from the men .Women have far greater capabilities than given credit for
CR: Sounds like the start of Womens Lib
L: I wish I had my pestle that I could pound you with. I am at least 2300 years old and you best be giving me some respect.
CR: So what did you do?
L: We told our husbands that until the wars were resolved , we would exercise ‘Total abstinence from sex’. We informed the Spartan women accordingly and they agreed as well
CR: (aghast) , you did what!!!
L: Well it was just foolish, men have far greater responsibilities than leaving their families and country behind to go fight some silly wars
CR: (still aghast) , you goddamn hippie!!! And all the women agreed to this
L : Harummph Hippies indeed .The women were extremely unwilling at first but I got them to swear an oath that we would create desire in their husbands but abstain from sex , they managed to stick it out, though I did get some creative excuses like one woman wanted to get some flax , another miraculously got pregnant overnight and she wanted to go home to deliver .
CR: How does one get pregnant overnight? divine intervention?
L: Hardly, she found herself a helmet and stuck it on her belly to look pregnant
CR: Why ?
L: Women want the family life as much as men do , nobody enjoys celibacy, not even the monks who practice it
CR: So what happened next?
L: The men tried their best to persuade us with their various juvenile tactics , including trying to smoke us out , sending commissioners of the peace etc
L: Nothing , we did not budge!!
CR : The men did not try to force themselves on you
L: I had told them to resist . Besides men dont like these forced affairs, A married man wants harmony, cooperation not rape
CR:I suppose, what happened next?
L: Eventually the Spartans and the Athenians made their peace
CR: Just like that??
L: Well it was preceded by many many days of painful tumescence for both the Athenian and the Spartan men.
CR: sounds like ‘Make love not war’ another hippie theme
L: Hardly , we experienced the original horrors of war and would have been the first to experience that which is why Lysistrata is so relevant even today . And morever all is well that ends well . We had a great big dance at the end .
CR : A dance ? I would have expected a orgy
L: Well they do say that dancing is the vertical expression of horizontal intention but as open minded as the Greeks were , an orgy is absolutely out of the question . Orgies were invented by the barbaric Romans. But a little plug from a 2300 year old woman to all women , “My sisters , read Lysistrata and see how I bought two empires to their knees .And you will also see that only a woman could have done that ” . Now a little plug for my male readers , “My brothers , read and be warned”.
From a modern highfalutin Lysistrata reader : While the play is funny and it has an excellent premise and a noteworthy goal, I was quite mortified to read about the sexual humor . Where is the need to show the enormous phallus es of the various male characters ? Or the need for the Athenian women to fondle the breasts of the Spartan women and comment as to their lusciousness? or admire their smooth behinds . It was funny but not so great that I would bother to read it again
From a normal modern day Lysistrata reader : The play was extremely funny with enormous phallus’s and oodles of sexual humor . It was extremely funny when the Athenian women decided to go feel up the Spartan women and admire their well endowed assets . Though I would not bother to read it again