Chereas And Callirhoe Comparison

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The ancient novel Chaereas and Callirhoe and the modern novel Oryx and Crake reflect the times in which they are written in. The structure of the two novels, their characterization and the kinds of humor found in each reflect the concerns of their readers. The organization of Chaereas and Callirhoe is straightforward and uncomplicated. The novel is told from a narrator’s point of view named Chariton an told in chronological order. Beginning with Chaereas and Callirhoe meeting and continuing chronologically to Chaereas returning to Syracuse with rescued Callirhoe. Organizing novels chronologically allowed ancient writes to incorporate random events and quick action in the plot; adding to the excitement in the story by accelerating events…show more content…
Every character is simple and underdeveloped, appearing almost childlike. The reader’s familiarity with the characters can only go to the extent that the narrator explains them to during the story. Every character, with the exception of Polycharmus, are incompinate of thinking rationally. Irrational thinking makes the characters unpredictable with their actions. Chaereas is the most irrational character in the novel as well as the least fortunate. The decisions he makes leading up to the search confirm his irrational thinking. Even though it was not sailing season, Chaereas was very adamant about going to sail off to find Callirhoe yelling, “Let’s sail!” (49). But when his mother and father beg him not to go he “threw himself off of the ship into the sea, hoping to end it all and avoid either of the fates…” (50.) Only a character that thinks irrationally could act in this manner. When a character's irrational thinking combines with melodrama the result are melodramatic episodes. Ancient novels incorporated melodrama in order to emphasize specific parts in the plot. The first melodramatic episode appears when Chaereas sees Callirhoe for the first time. Chaereas was “smitten with a wound of love [and] could scarcely manage his way home” (4). This episode magnified how crazy in love Chaereas became at the first sight of Callirhoe and her rivaling beauty to…show more content…
The love triangle that is created is between Chaereas, Callirhoe and Dionysius after Dionysius falls in love and marries Callirhoe. Now two of the male protagonists have fallen in love with the female protagonist, setting the stage for conflict. When all of the characters become aware of the love triangle, it forces them to question Fortune and blame Euros for the conflict. Irrational thinking, melodrama and jealousy from all three characters build up to a war being fought over Callirhoe with Chaereas emerging victorious. Love triangles end with two people thanking Fortune and Euros for allowing their love to continue while the other blames them for their misfortune. Readers can relate to these characters because fortune and misfortune are a part of their everyday

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