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Customer Reviews

3.7 out of 5 stars
24
Aristophanes' Clouds
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Price:$10.95+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime


on January 28, 2018
Good read!
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on November 10, 2016
Full of typos, which I would forgive if not for Henderson's egregious renderings of the Greek, to the point that it was obnoxious to read. I've been a huge fan of Focus for a while, but this is embarrassing and I will not be getting another from their classical library series.
One person found this helpful
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on June 5, 2017
Needed for a course and it was very helpful.
One person found this helpful
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on March 16, 2008
Aristophanes' comedy "Clouds" is a humorous send-up of Greek rationalism, science, atheism, and lawyerly sophistry, as supposedly represented by Socrates and the philosophical and sophistic schools of Athens. Aristophanes portrays intellectuals as an arrogant class of effete and pasty skinned unbelievers. Except for their skills in rhetoric, which help them get around the law and rip people off, their knowledge is of little worldly or practical value. In other words, their heads are figuratively in the clouds (hence the play's title).

"Clouds" is funny in places, but also disturbing in its anti-intellectualism and nostalgia for marshal virtues and doubt-free theism. If Aristophanes were alive today, he might be a caustic, and very conservative, Republican (or even a Fascist). For all this, his play has an undeniably contemporary feel in its critiques of rhetoric, and makes a good primer for reflection on the nihilistic and shameless uses of argumentation (as when oil company representatives engage in blatant sophistries to cast doubt on global warming science).

But when, at the end of the play, the lead character (Strepsiades) gleefully burns down the school of Socrates, one is sobered by the reactionary nature of the play. The ending reminds one of humanity's long and tragic history of genocide and iconoclasm (the destroying of a rival ideology's texts, idols, symbols, or buildings). The ending of Aristophanes' play clearly suggests that the killing of an entire class of people in his society would be a positive development. It is not without reason that Plato famously attributed Socrates' death, at least in part, to the popular prejudice generated against him by Aristophanes' "Clouds."

In short, Aristophanes' play is thought-provoking, funny, and sobering. It's an easy read and, even after 2500 years, still relevant.
4 people found this helpful
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on August 15, 2015
Also a very nice book which explains all about clouds in an easy to understand way. My 4 1/2 year old liked it and will want to read it again, as will I.
One person found this helpful
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on November 21, 2012
If you are into the Greek plays, this is a very interesting one! I had not read it before in any class!
One person found this helpful
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on November 21, 2010
First of all, this is not the Hickie translation. 'nuff said? That should stop you right there.

I believe it is the 1912 London Athenian Society translation widely available on the net.

Second: a glitch (or something) limited the download (across multiple devices, i checked and retried) to the end (or so) of Act one, line 1150.

Save your dollar.
3 people found this helpful
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on September 28, 2013
Classical Greece at its best. Now that the schools have dropped the ball, we must educated ourselves. Aristophanes is a writer from thpusands of years ago but so very contemporary. Timeless.
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on January 27, 2016
One of the world's classics, how could it be anything less than a 5.
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on December 6, 2015
Useful read for college :) :) :)
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