Passion In Ovid's Metamorphoses

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The Metamorphoses was written by Ovid, a Roman poet in the first century CE, around the same time as Augustus’ reign; considering Augustus was responsible for his banishment from Rome. In Book VII of the Metamorphoses, Ovid has a major focus on Jason and Medea, specifically the relentless passion Medea feels for Jason. Essentially, Medea is willing to commit any action, whether crime or deed in effort to be with Jason. In line 26, this passion for Jason is put into overdrive; Medea asks the audience why she cares so much about a stranger. She feels as though something is controlling her to act a way that she never has in the past; this force is infatuation. This infatuation, not love, can be substantiated in line 26 and 27 when she claims…show more content…
Regardless of the type of power, Medea makes clear her inability to control her actions, “I’d act more sanely, if I only could” (31). Through saying this, Medea exhibits her desire to act rationally, to consider her family and her country. She is prevented from logic by her passion; for despite her acknowledgment of the appropriate actions she chooses to “pursue the worse” (35). However, her claiming to pursue the worse, depicts Medea in a different light. This whole time, Ovid portrays her as too overtaken by passion to be logical, and yet she is able to make a comparison of logic versus desire. Therefore, demonstrating that while she is claimed to be so preoccupied, there is still part of her is available, she could still be convinced at this point that her actions are desire driven. However, no one forms this opposition, therefore, she continues to “blaze now for this stranger” (36). This imagery with Medea blazing demonstrates not only the passion, but the danger involved in her infatuation. After all, she is pursuing a man who she knows literally nothing about, just as one cannot predict the nature of fire. Yet her dreams continue; she accepts this concept of having him join in her life; she accepts the idea of marriage by asking, “Why dream of…show more content…
For while Medea acknowledges that the gods are in charge, she prays for him to live. In many respects, by leaving his fate up to heaven, Medea is pleasing the gods by saying they are superior to her. So Medea offers this prayer to the heavens, claiming that she does not necessarily have to love him to pray for him. For once, she is demonstrating a behavior of being concerned for the wellbeing of another; however, one can rightly assume that Medea has her own self interests in mind, considering she just wants the ability to be with a handsome man; despite her attempt to claim otherwise. After all, she has a tough decision to make between a man who she believes she loves and a homeland that she knows she loves. Regardless, Medea chooses to chase after Jason, a man that she is attempting to not love, but cannot get over because it is based on infatuation and she is ignorant of this
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