Simon Goldhill's Aeschylus: The Oresteia (Landmarks of World Literature PDF

By Simon Goldhill

ISBN-10: 0511166079

ISBN-13: 9780511166075

ISBN-10: 0521539811

ISBN-13: 9780521539814

ISBN-10: 0521832292

ISBN-13: 9780521832298

Simon Goldhill makes a speciality of the play's themes--justice, sexual politics, violence, and the function of guy in historical Greek culture--in this basic advent to Aeschylus' Oresteia, essentially the most very important and influential of all Greek dramas. After exploring how Aeschylus constructs a fable for the town during which he lived, a last bankruptcy considers the impact of the Oresteia on extra modern theater. The volume's equipped constitution and consultant to extra examining will make it a useful reference for college students and academics. First version Hb (1992): 0-521-40293-X First variation Pb (1992): 0-521-40853-9

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Extra info for Aeschylus: The Oresteia (Landmarks of World Literature (New))

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On the one hand, the wild, the violent, the monstrous – like the Cyclops – construct a negative image of a transgressive world where social values are flouted, and violent deception corrupts any normal process of communication. On the other, the Phaeacians live in a glorious and glamorous world where the trees are always in fruit, ships are self-propelling and even the guard-dogs are magic creatures of gold made by a god. The Phaeacians inhabit a society as excessive in its 44 THE ORESTEIA attributes of civilization as the Cyclops is without them.

From the first ode’s representation of the sacrifice of Iphigeneia, Agamemnon is locked into a narrative of revenge and reversal: revenge which punishes wrongdoing, but which, in turn, establishes the revenger as a wrongdoer in need of punishment. Cassandra, however, offers a further perspective on Agamemnon and his death. For in her prophecies she recalls the violent past of the house of Agamemnon. Agamemnon’s father, Atreus, took revenge on his brother, Thyestes (who had commited adultery with Atreus’ wife) by killing, cooking and serving to Thyestes his own children.

She is also a virgin goddess without a male partner. This strange status of Athene must be remembered when she gives her reasons for voting for Orestes – reasons which are instrumental in his preservation and thus the trilogy’s conclusion (Eum. 735–41): I will cast this vote for Orestes. For no mother exists who bore me. I favour the male in all things, except in attaining marriage, With all my spirit. I am wholly of the father. Thus I will not privilege the fate of a woman Who has killed her husband, the overseer of the house.

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Aeschylus: The Oresteia (Landmarks of World Literature (New)) by Simon Goldhill

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