Sacrifice In Medea And The Book Of Job

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Sacrifice is the ability to disregard one's own suffering in order to selflessly help someone or something else. A truly selfless person will give every ounce of their being to help a person they love, whether it be a helpless animal in the path of a vehicle or a homeless person sitting in the rain. However, sacrifice can come in different forms from different people; one person's sacrifice is never the same as another's. This is evident in the ancient texts Medea and the Book of Job, where both characters make personal sacrifices that are extremely different from one another. Both texts are controversial in that they feature sacrifice alongside complicated issues ranging from feminism and motherhood, to faith and protection. Some would say…show more content…
Her actions were inexplicably caused by grief, but may be a part of a greater idea. For example, Medea's infanticide could have been a sacrifice in order to bring justice upon Jason and cleanse his house. In fact, Euripides makes it clear that Medea did not vengefully murder her own offspring because of jealousy, she did it to make Jason suffer in the long run. Medea refers to her sacrifice by saying, “And he whom law forbids/To stand in attendance at my sacrifices,/Let him see to it.” (34). Therefore, we can see that Medea believes her actions are not only a sacrifice, but also as a form of cleansing, since she can not risk being tainted by the presence of unclean individuals. She specifically refers to Jason’s infidelity. She claims they “died from a disease they caught from their father” (44). Medea compares Jason’s adultery to a malady to prove that killing her children was the medicine needed to cure the sickness. However, the Chorus is not advocating for Medea and infanticide is actually the opposite of what the women are trying to say. The appalling situation is an attempt to reestablish normalcy. According to Ancient Greek culture, true unhappiness is the loss of one’s lineage, which is exactly what Medea uses to bring complete unhappiness upon Jason. She also brings this upon herself, and exclaims, “Sad will be the life I’ll lead and sorrowful for me,” (34). By inflicting this grief upon herself for the sake of revenge against Jason, she performs a noble self-sacrifice. She sacrifices her own humanity, however, for her own good. She cuts the only wire attaching her to the human world and mortality. She gains access to the level of the gods once she detaches from humanity, and becomes a homeric hero because of
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