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Title: Anger in the Oresteia
Author: Irarrazabal Elliott, Manuela
ISNI:       0000 0004 8499 913X
Awarding Body: UCL (University College London)
Current Institution: University College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2019
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The study of ancient emotions has attracted growing attention in classical scholarship in recent years. This thesis seeks to contribute to that growing body of research. It examines the representation of anger in the Oresteia. While dealing with a culture remote in time, its religion, social structure and language, I attempt to extract the experiential base behind the dramatisation of the emotion by using cognitive science as a basis for my analysis. I propose that the representation of anger in Aeschylus indicates a rich conceptualisation of the emotion with a sophisticated degree of psychological insight and realism. Anger is a complex psychological phenomenon involving cognitive processing, bodily change, and social interaction. Tragedy, a medium that deals with intense emotion in a social context, in interactive form through both word and action, lends itself exceptionally well to the presentation, and conceptualisation, of anger as a multifaceted and complex experience and phenomenon. The methodology and scope of this thesis enables the enquiry into this conceptual richness. While I draw on previous research on ancient emotions, both in method and content, I also develop them further by highlighting the importance of shaping the enquiry in a way that allows theoretical breadth and analytical depth. I start out from the cognitive hypothesis that emotions are a function of the mind to explore how the characters in the trilogy shape their anger in terms of evaluations of social interactions. I use other Greek sources as a comparative framework for this investigation. I then treat cognition in a broader sense as having the body with all its sensorimotor capacities as its context. The use of cognitive metaphors will enable an understanding that accounts for aspects of anger with an important presence in the text such as overdetermination and desire. The dramatisation of anger is also considered as a socially embedded phenomenon, developing within and continuously affected by a social environment. Finally, I will approach anger from the perspective of the Gods both as immanent forces and as anthropomorphic entities.
Supervisor: Carey, C. Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available