In Aristophanes' Lysistrata, the women of Athens, fed up with the war against Sparta, go on a sex strike and barricade themselves into the acropolis to persuade their husbands to vote against the war. It is the most often performed of all Aristophanes' comedies. It is also, perhaps, the most misunderstood. This collection of essays by eight leading academics - written for sixth-form students and the general public alike - sets the play firmly in its historical and social context, while exploring Aristophanes' purpose in writing it and considering the responses of modern audiences and directors. The collection has been assembled and edited by David Stuttard, whose energetic new performing version of the play is included in this volume. Contributors include: Alan Beale; Edith Hall; Lorna Hardwick; James Morwood; Martin Revermann; James Robson; Alan H. Sommerstein; Michael Walton.