The semester has drawn to a close and I spent the past few months teaching introductory mythology to undergraduates, which included The Medea of Euripides, albeit only perfunctorily, much to my chagrin. Now that my time is my own again, and my love for Medea has been reinvigorated, I have more time to ponder all of the issues this play and the associated myths raise.
I'd be interested in seeing your responses to some of the study questions I posed my students:
1) Did Medea have to kill her children? Did she have alternatives? If so, what were they?
2) Why does Medea choose to kill her children? What is the symbolic nature of such an act?
3) There is evidence that Medea attained cult status in Greece and was worshipped as a daimon. Why do you think this occurred, and why might the Greeks pray to her? Remember, Medea was decidedly a non-Greek; that is, a barbarian. What does this say about her worship?
4) Apollonios writes that Medea was to be married to Achilles in the Underworld after her death. How does this inform your interpretation of her character and her marriage to Jason?
I hope these questions lead to wonderful discussions, and I look forward to seeing your responses!