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Title: A commentary on Euripides' Hecuba 658-1295, with an introduction to the play as a whole
Author: Marshall, Christopher Warren
Awarding Body: University of Edinburgh
Current Institution: University of Edinburgh
Date of Award: 1992
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Revenge is a concept fundamental to a proper understanding of the Hecuba. The Introduction studies this relationship in six parts. Part I discusses the context of revenge as it relates to the play. Section II shows that the notion of a restorative, morally unambiguous revenge was present in the Ancient Near East and continues into twentieth-century sociological thought. Section III connects the play with the larger body of myth, especially the sacrifice of Iphigeneia. This contrasts with the sacrifice of Polyxena, which is insufficient and non-functional: the windlessness continues, and another solution - Hecuba's revenge - must be found. Section IV pursues the consequences of this interpretation of revenge. In effect there exists an intertextual relationship between the Hecuba and the Oresteia of Aeschylus. At every turn, Euripides undermines the Aeschylean system of vendetta, and replaces it with his own righteous revenge, as embodied by the Erinyes. In this light is Hecuba's metamorphosis, predicted at the play's end, interpreted. Section V examines the date (c.424 B.C.) and dating of the play, with reference to the Cyclops, which is shown to date post-409 B.C. Section VI details aspects of the play's structure and role-division. It then introduces the technique of status analysis as a meaningful way of examining character interaction in drama. The Hecuba is then analysed in terms of status. Hecuba's rise in status is inextricably linked with the play's presentation of revenge. The commentary is based in Diggle's (corrected) Oxford Text, but questions his textual decisions on certain lines; there is a table of suggested divergences from his text. Then, following the 'traditional' commentary format, issues pertaining to individual lines are discussed in detail. These include textual, literary, thematic and dramaturgical matters.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available