By Karen Bassi

ISBN-10: 0472106252

ISBN-13: 9780472106257

"Greek drama calls for a narrative of origins," writes Karen Bassi in Acting Like Men. leaving behind the hunt for ritual and local origins of Greek drama, Bassi argues for a extra secular and no more formalist method of the emergence of theater in historical Greece. Bassi takes a extensive view of Greek drama as a cultural phenomenon, and he or she discusses a large choice of texts and artifacts that come with epic poetry, old narrative, philosophical treatises, visible media, and the dramatic texts themselves.
In her dialogue of theaterlike practices and stories, Bassi proposes new conceptual different types for knowing Greek drama as a cultural establishment, viewing theatrical functionality as a part of what Foucault has known as a discursive formation. Bassi additionally offers a massive new research of gender in Greek tradition at huge and in Athenian civic ideology particularly, the place spectatorship on the civic theater used to be a distinguishing characteristic of citizenship, and the place citizenship used to be denied women.
Acting Like Men comprises specified discussions of message-sending as a kind of scripted speech within the Iliad, of cover and the theatrical physique of Odysseus within the Odyssey, of tyranny as a theaterlike phenomenon within the narratives of Herodotus, and of Dionysus because the tyrannical and effeminate god of the theater in Euripides' Bacchae and Aristophanes' Frogs. Bassi concludes that the validity of an idealized masculine id in Greek and Athenian tradition is very contested within the theater, where--in principle--citizens turn into passive spectators. Thereafter the writer considers Athenian theater and Athenian democracy as jointly reinforcing mimetic regimes.
Acting Like Men will curiosity these drawn to the background of the theater, functionality conception, gender and cultural stories, and feminist ways to old texts.
Karen Bassi is affiliate Professor of Classics, college of California, Santa Cruz.

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Additional info for Acting Like Men: Gender, Drama, and Nostalgia in Ancient Greece

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Perhaps the best evidence of Plato's nostalgic enterprise is the fact that it is embedded in dramatic dialogue, a form that simultaneously expresses a desire to reanimate the dead Socrates and the necessarily failed satisfaction of that desire. 1 3 Plato bases his critique on the possibility that social and political structures can be destabilized by bodily or visually manifested impersonations. This critique operates within the more general Platonic condemnation of the physical body and assumes an incommensurability between the reality and truth to which the eternal soul has access and the approximations and falsehoods that lead the mortal and ephemeral body astray (see Spelman 1982).

3. 47. Cf. Wilshire (1982, 34-35) on what he calls the "body-self" in theatrical experience. Nostalgia and Drama 41 If the "cause" of desire, gesture, and act can be localized within the "self" of the actor, then the political regulations and disciplinary practices which produce that ostensibly coherent gender are effectively displaced from view. The displacement of a political and discursive origin of gender identity onto a psychological "core" precludes an analysis of the political constitution of the gendered subject and its fabricated notions about the ineffable interiority of its sex or of its true identity.

See also p. 175 n. 82. 26. Blundell 1992, 157. Acting Like Men These questions bring me back to catharsis. It seems clear that when Aristotle talks about catharsis in his definition of tragedy at Poetics 1449b24-28, he is not talking about an effect on the characters in the play. This interpretation is borne out at 1453bl-7, in which the "someone" [·w;] to whom Aristotle refers is the hearer of the [Oedipus] plot, who, as Segal remarks, stands in for the spectator. 27 The feelings of pity and fear to which that hearer is subject are the same feelings that bring about the proper effect of the tragic performance, that is, catharsis.

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Acting Like Men: Gender, Drama, and Nostalgia in Ancient Greece by Karen Bassi

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