Podcast: Night Vale Pilot


Screen Shot 2017-02-14 at 1.22.31 PM.pngWelcome To Night Vale Episode One: Pilot


WelcometoNightVale. “1 – Pilot.” YouTube. YouTube, 14 Jan. 2015. Web. 9 Feb. 2017

Night Vale is a place where things never go quite as expected, and often have disastrous consequences. To those who are familiar with Night Vale that nothing is ever quite right in that town and there is little plot to the show with limited background information given to the events it discusses. Cecil speaks to the audience as if we are one of his own- a citizen of Night Vale but also at the same time an outsider. As an outsider we don’t know what to focus on first. The Night Vale addresses the strange occurrences of its everyday life suggests that we are assumed to be in at least partial knowledge of these affairs. He refers to the citizens of Night Vale by name as if we are to be as familiar with them as he is. The town is given no specific geographical setting for a reason because Night Vale is all around us/ everywhere. This strange and exotic town is a metaphor for everything we live through on a daily basis. Its exaggerated state of being reflects the chaos of our everyday lives. Night Vale citizens battle supernatural forces and inexplicable occurrences while we battle finals week and college tuition, and their questionable authority figures sometimes remind us of our own. Cecil even goes on to talk about the weather and daily going ons of this town as if we are really there. Yet through all of this, they are still able to maintain somewhat (ordinary to them) lives. The goal is to give the show as much animosity as possible while still realing the audience in to make them feel a part of the show and how we in the real world can overcome the also unfair and inexplicable occurances we face. Night vales successful horror is subtle and the pauses or transitions in between in segments gives me an idea for how I could do a reading of Agamemnon to give the audience an idea about how reeling and gruesome some scenes are.


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12 Jan. Agamemnon

Activity I: Recap

Three Key Ideas from last class
Take a few minutes and write down three key terms, ideas, or stories we discussed during class on Tuesday. You are also welcome to ask any questions our first class may have left you with.

Background, Greek Theater


Masks in Oresteia



Activity II: Freewrite

Write without stopping for 5-8 minutes in response to the following
Pick a “scene” from our reading of the Agamemnon and describe how you think it was likely staged. How do the limitations/innovations of early Greek tragedy effect the possible meaning of the scene you chose?


Activity III: Discussion

  • 1. What exactly is Artemis so angry about and how does her anger motivate the whole action of the play?
  • 2. Why does Agamemnon kill Iphigenia?
  • 3. Is Clytemnestra a good ruler–why/why not?
  • 4. What does the Herald say about the altars and gods of Troy (527 ff), and how does this hearken back to Clytemnestra’s words at 338ff? What is the effect on the audience?

  • Take a couple of minutes and locate an animal simile or set of metaphors. What purpose does the “animal’ serve in the passage you chose? What purposes does the “animal” serve in the play more broadly?

  • [/list]



    Blog Post 1: Short Essay Draft

    Blog Post 1: Draft of Short Essay
    Choose a passage from The Agamemnon or The Eumenides that is approx. 5-15 lines long. Introduce the passage in a few sentences; type the passage out; provide a short summary or overview of the citation you chose; point out at least two linguistic features (i.e. rhetorical figures, meter, homonyms, etc.). Lastly explain how the following 2 things about the passage you chose

    • 1. How does the citation you chose engage with the question of the animal?
    • 2. How does the staging of passage you chose affect its interpretation?

    For full credit the post should be at least 300 words long, in MLA format, include at least one image, and be posted to the course blog.

    DQ: The Agamemnon

    Eagles and the Hare (111-160)
    • Which characters does Calchas, the seer, think the eagles refer to? To what other characters might the eagles refer? To what characters does Calchas suggest the hare refers?
    • What is the connection between the pregnant hare the eagles kill and Agamemnon’s sacrifice of Iphigenia? What exactly is Artemis angry about and how does her motivate the whole action of the play?

    The “Hymn to Zeus” (162-92)
    • What are we to make of these lines? Why does the Chorus begin as if they are praying and then switch to a description of the events on Aulis that they just talked about?
    • What characters are they talking about here? Is the Chorus talking about Agamemnon or Paris? Or are they talking about Uranus, Kronos, and Zeus?
    • Why does the Chorus retell the story of Iphigenia’s sacrifice? What new information do they add to the events that have come before?

    Clytemnestra and the Chorus (258-356)
    • Why does the Chorus as Clytemnestra for proof of the fall of Troy? Where do they accuse her of getting the knowledge? What proof does she give?
    • What does her description and maintenance of the beacon system suggest about her powers as a ruler?
    • What does Clytemnestra say about the Greeks at Troy in regard to the gods and temples of Troy? What does the chorus mean when it says, “let me loose myself in the wonder of it all” (320)?

    The Herald (493-682)
    • Which five things/gods does the Herald first greet when he arrives? What does each of these five mean to him?
    • What instructions does he give to the chorus at first?
    • What does the Herald say about the altars and gods of Troy (527 ff), and how does this hearken back to Clytemnestra’s words at 338ff? What is the effect on the audience?
    • What does he mean when he says, “for years now/only my silence kept me free from harm” (538-9)? Is this an odd characteristic in a Herald? What does he keep silenced about? What does he say the conditions were like at the front?

    Carpet Sequence (816-945)
    • What is you assessment of Agamemnon’s character? Does he display excessive pride?
    • How does Agamemnon respond to Clytemnestra’s speech? What three criticisms of her does he make?
    • What’s going on with the crimson tapestries as out text translates it? Why is Agamemnon reluctant to step on the carpet?
    • What/how does she persuade him to walk on the tapestries?

    Cassandra’s Vision (1070-1317)
    • What does Cassandra tell the Chorus at 1090 ff that they do not understand at first? Who are the small children wailing? See also line 1218. What does the Chorus finally understand about it? (1242)
    • Why does Cassandra repeatedly mention a bath? Other than the past, what else does Cassandra see and how does the chorus react? (1108, 1127)
    • When does the chorus change their minds? What makes them believe her? How can we deal with their seeming inconsistency?

    The Murder of Agamemnon & Cassandra (1390-1551)
    • How does Clytemnestra justify her murder of Agamemnon (1414ff, and 1445), and what reference does she make to the inactivity of the Chorus when Agamemnon committed his outrage at Aulis? (1414)
    • What is the ‘triple-gorged spirit’ which Clytemnestra and the Chorus refer to? (1476, 1481) How is Zeus involved?
    • Clytemnestra says that she was only an agent, but the real killer was something else. What does she claim that it was? And what is the Chorus’ response to her claim? (1500)
    • What kind of burial will the murdered Agamemnon have? Who will kiss him after he dies, according to Clytemnestra? (1551)

    Tomb of Aegisthus