By Rebecca Bushnell

ISBN-10: 1405107359

ISBN-13: 9781405107358

A spouse to Tragedy is a necessary source for someone attracted to exploring the function of tragedy in Western historical past and tradition.

  • Tells the tale of the old improvement of tragedy from classical Greece to modernity
  • Features 28 essays by means of popular students from a number of disciplines, together with classics, English, drama, anthropology and philosophy
  • Broad in its scope and ambition, it considers interpretations of tragedy via faith, philosophy and historical past
  • Offers a clean evaluation of historic Greek tragedy and demonstrates how the perform of examining tragedy has replaced considerably some time past decades

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Extra resources for A Companion to Tragedy

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Stockholm: Svenska Institut i Athen, 35–57. Lefkowitz, M. R. (1987). ’’ Studi italiani di filologia classica 5, 149–66. Lefkowitz, M. R. (1989). ’’ Classical Quarterly 39, 70–82. MacDowell, D. M. (1989). ’’ In Symposion 1982. Vortra¨ge zur griechischen und hellenistischen Rechtsgeschichte [1982 symposium. Lectures on Greek and Hellenistic historical jurisprudence], ed. F. J. Fernandez Nieto. Cologne: Po¨hlau, 65–77. Mastronarde, D. J. ) 1994. Euripides, Phoenissai. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

We should also note the existence of lost plays in which, whether or not Dionysus himself appeared, there may have been much mention of him or of his maenads, for instance, plays entitled Actaeon, Sophocles’ Tereus, and Euripides’ Ino and Antiope. Tragedy and the Dionysiac Certain features of extant tragedy may be said to derive from its origin in Dionysiac ritual: the centrality of the chorus, the tendency of the chorus to associate its own dancing with Dionysus (Henrichs 1995), the use of masks (used in the predramatic cult of Dionysus), the ubiquity (in contrast to Homer, for example) of the evocation of ritual, perhaps the thematic importance of a suffering individual.

It was a myth closely associated with (and indeed probably experienced in) a ritual – initiation into the Dionysiac mysteries – and hence was a common theme of the dithyramb. It plays a prominent part in Euripides’ Bacchae: it is mentioned by Dionysus in line 3, and in 6–12 he mentions Semele’s tomb converted into a shrine, together with the royal 30 Richard Seaford house destroyed (along with Semele) by the ‘‘still-living flame’’ of Zeus; the same myth is then narrated in the dithyrambic entry-song of the maenads (88–95); and when Dionysus later makes his epiphany with the destruction of the royal house by earthquake, thunder, and lightning, in a passage full of evocations of mystic initiation, Semele’s tomb flares up again with ‘‘the flame that once Zeus’s hurled thunder left’’ (598–9, 623–4).

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A Companion to Tragedy by Rebecca Bushnell


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