Wednesday, September 4, 2019

Homoerotic Unions Make Up for Unsatisfying Marriages Essay -- Marriage

Homoerotic Unions Make Up for Unsatisfying Marriages Marriage is undeniably effective for some things such as procreation and rearing those produced children.Ê Biologically, all creatures need heterosexual union of some kind to continue their species, but this union need not be a required social construct.Ê In ancient and classical Greece, as well as in much of the world today, marriage is a social expectation.Ê Elders encourage young men to choose their even younger wives at the expected time and to create a respectable typical household.Ê But is marriage actually necessary or even what people desire?Ê Hellenic marriage seems to be constructed in such a way as to leave many Greeks unsatisfied and discontent.Ê Why else would adultery and keeping mistresses be so prevalent?Ê One strong indicator of this general dissatisfaction is the prevalence of homoerotic relationships and their benefits compared to the benefits of marriage.Ê Based on textual evidence provided in Plato?s Symposium and Sappho?s lyr ic poetry, homoerotic relationships seem to be important and often essential unions that do not fit into the social construct of Hellenic marriages.Ê ÊÊÊÊÊÊÊÊÊÊÊ?We human beings will never attain happiness unless we find perfect love (Plato 193c,? says Plato?s version of comic playwright Aristophanes.Ê However, it is not necessarily a joke.Ê For many people, perfect love is not to be found in Hellenic marriage.Ê Rather, their natural desires lead them towards a lover or life partner of the same sex.Ê It seems that many intellectual Greeks understood that homoerotic desire was inherent in many people, yet marriage continued to prevail as the leading lifestyle.Ê In Symposium, Plato has Aristophanes tell a... ...struct of marriage, homoerotic relationships allow power dynamics to be based on personal rather than societal stipulations, thereby being more fulfilling for many people. ÊSince there was undeniable same sex desire in many people, these relationships were inevitable in ancient and classical Greece.Ê Unfortunately, as long as these people lived in a society where heterosexual marriage was necessary, they could not pursue their homoerotic relationships as lifelong partnerships.Ê Pausanius and Agathon?s relationship was a rare exception, yet, they did not actually live together.Ê Marriage required people to stay in socially determined, inherently unbalanced, heterosexual relationships and thereby left many unsatisfied.Ê Thus, the presence of these homoerotic relationships, shows that many people were not happy in their traditional, Hellenic marriages.Ê

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