Ms. Gokturk


Comparative Essay Assignment

 Euripides’ The Trojan Women, The Bacchae, and  Medea



Compare in a literary analysis essay the three plays we read by Euripides: The Trojan Women, Medea and The Bacchae.  Create a thesis statement worthy of defending using evidence from the texts.



·        Use ideas from the three works to establish a controlling idea. See below for some brainstorming prompts.

·        Your essay must include information from all three works to support your controlling idea. 

·        Be sure to give equal time and analysis to each work.

·        Use specific and relevant evidence from all texts to develop your controlling idea.

·        Show how Euripides uses specific literary elements (for example: theme, characterization, conflict, structure, point of view, setting, etc.) or techniques (for example, symbolism, irony, deus ex machina, etc.) to present his ideas.

·        AVOID plot summary, but instead, aim for specific evidence that supports your thesis.

·        Organize your ideas in a logical and coherent manner. USE PARAGRAPHS!

·        Use language that communicates ideas effectively.

·        Provide titles and author + your thesis in the introduction.

·        Use PRESENT TENSE.

·        Follow the conventions of standard written English.

·        Complete an outline and have Ms. G okay it before you start/finish.

·        Please complete an outline by ___________. Remember, an outline is a bulleted basic map of the essay. See the attached outline mold or create your own.

·        Submit your final draft to by ___________.


Brainstorming: Possible Topics: 

You might choose one from this list or combine to create another argument.

·        Character study. Find a common link between characters and compare and contrast them.

·        Compare the protagonists of each work.

·        Analyze how love and hate appear in the plays.

·        Is the character a tragic hero? Use the definition of the term to format your essay.

·        What is the political message in each?

·        Who has the power and what does that signify?

·        Find a common theme and compare and contrast.

·        How is honor important in each play?

·        What role do the gods play in each? How are the gods portrayed?

·        How are the plays timeless despite being over 2000 years old?  Do some current events research and compare real events today with the events in each play. You will need to cite your sources.

·        Research life during Euripides’ time and use that to help you analyze the messages of each play.

·        How is violence portrayed in each piece? What is Euripides’ message?

·        Does the play fulfill Aristotle’s definition of tragedy? Use the definition to drive your piece, analyzing each play through that lens.

·        What is the role of women in each play? What is Euripides thinking about the roles of women?

·        Find a critical lens and use that as your base for a thesis statement.

·        Other topic?