Poetics Questions and Answers
by Aristotle

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What were the main issues presented by Aristotle in his Poetics?

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In his Poetics, Aristotle writes about two major types of Greek poetry, dramatic and epic. The treatment of dramatic poetry is limited to tragedy in the extant text; an additional book on comedy has been lost, although some scholars argue that the Tractatus Coislinianus is based on an epitome of the missing book on  comedy. In the Poetics, Aristotle defines poetry as imitation by means of words, using direct mimesis in drama and a mixture of mimesis and diegesis on epic. Tragedy, according to Aristotle, should be comprised of a single action of a certain seriousness and operates by means of fear and pity to acheive a catharsis of the pathemata.

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