Some time ago Dr. Luschnig and I, working with a group of friends, made up a chart of the personal characteristics that, as we saw it, led to the inevitable clash between Jason and Medea. I thought you might find it helpful as you read the play. If you think of any further characteristics that ought to be added, please let me know.

Personal Characteristics of Medea and Jason
as exhibited in Euripides' Medea


MEDEA
JASON
more royal - divine
less royal - human
aggressive
ambitious
divine and royal pedigree
no credentials except his luck
first appearance offstage: this makes her unseen and scary (horror movie syndrome)
first appearance onstage: ordinary and on a level with the other human characters
foreigner to Greece; outsider
foreigner to Corinth, but a Greek
a self-imposed exile from her nation
strong Greek nationalist (makes a speech about the superiority of Greeks)
Colchis has a reputation for witchcraft
mundane: gets ahead by mortal means
woman with a past: already killed family members, among others
adventurer (both senses of the word) who shares Medea's shady past
history of using children to get at adults (her victimized brother)
uses women to get ahead (Medea and Glauke)
determined
ruthless - will do anything to get ahead
says she hates her children and wishes they were dead
says he is concerned about the fate of Medea and his sons
jealous and protective of her own interests
duplicitous, or just naive? What is likely to be the fate of his sons by Medea if he marries Glauke?
clever and crafty
charming and diplomatic
views marriage as sacred
looks upon marriage as vehicle for economic or social advance; Jason is a fortune hunter