Love, Not Blood

To protest a war on Iraq, on Monday, March 3, Millsaps College joined others in all 50 states and 59 countries in one of 1,004 simultaneous performances of Aristophanes' Greek comedy, "Lysistrata." In the play, the women of ancient Greece protest a war their men are waging by withholding pleasure, so to speak. The men can only take it so long and sign a peace treaty. The play was originally presented in 411 BC when Greece was in the 20th year of a bloody 30-year war to raise public awareness.

The Millsaps actors—mostly non-theatrical volunteers—hoped to raise consciousness over the perils of a unilateral assault on Iraq. Millsaps prides itself on "the educated ability of citizens to question, to debate, to discuss, and then to decide our moral and ethical considerations," Catherine Freis of the Department of Classical Studies said in a lime-green statement released at the play, held just after noon in the Bowl.

Freis quoted constitutional scholar George Anastaplo, who has interpreted the meaning of the founding fathers: "For the people to be able to exercise their control effectively, they must be free to discuss fully what their governments have done, are doing and propose to do."

The actors only rehearsed about two hours, and some actors—including several men wearing orange jock straps—studied their lines even as the play unfolded. About 50 people turned out for the performance.

— Donna Ladd


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Sign in to comment