The Valpo Core Reader


Lauren Hokenson

Document Type

Love Analytical Essay

Publication Date



Unconditional love and self-sacrifice are both admired themes that are displayed in countless romance narratives, both in the present day and in the past. However, despite popular belief, Alcestis, is NOT one of those stories. In the play entitled, Alcestis, the main character feels that it is her obligation as a woman to sacrifice her life for her husband's. She does not forfeit her life because she feels it is what she should do or because it is what she truly wants to do, but instead, she dies for her husband because that is what is expected of her as a woman. Though no one directly states that a woman's life is less valuable than a man's, it can be implied by numerous statements given throughout the play. Many of the characters, including Alcestis, try to cover up this idea by claiming that she is dying for her husband as an act of unyielding love, not because her husband is more valued in society. Though it appears that Admetos does care for her to a certain extent, it is obvious that he does not feel that her life is as important as his own. Unfortunately, the attitude that Admetos' life is more important than the life of his wife goes beyond the attitude of Admetos himself and extends into the entire community.