Anaxarete


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Anaxarete

princess turned to stone for scorning commoner’s love. [Gk. Myth.: Zimmerman, 21]
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That is, just as Anaxarete is unmoved by Iphis's performance, so too should the audience of Iphis and Anaxarete be unmoved by Paris's and Domitilla's performance.
The object and purpose of Iphis and Anaxarete are less clear.
Her desire for Paris suggests that she wants to stage Iphis and Anaxarete so that she can cast him in a more easily sexualized role, "a lover's part" The performance then is pornographic: the object of the performance is Domitia and the purpose is to inflame her desire.
If we view the performance of Iphis and Anaxarete as designed to inflame the desire of Domitia, then this inset play has a similar purpose to that of the inset performance within the play.
Furthermore, Julia and Parthenius describe her outburst in terms that point out the discrepancy between the effect of Iphis's performance within the fictive world of Iphis and Anaxarete and the effect of Paris's performance within the fictive world of The Roman Actor:
The performance produces "contempt" within the play, but produces "affection" in reality (or at least within the fictive reality of The Roman Actor); while Anaxarete is unmoved, Domitia is decidedly moved.
Cecilia joins Pomona and Anaxarete as yet another woman who does not want to marry.