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Products for grant HB-251108-17

HB-251108-17
Facing Death in Ancient Greek Tragedy
Karen Bassi, University of California, Santa Cruz

Grant details: https://securegrants.neh.gov/publicquery/main.aspx?f=1&gn=HB-251108-17

Morbid Materialism: The Matter of the Corpse in Euripides' Alcestis (Book Section)
Title: Morbid Materialism: The Matter of the Corpse in Euripides' Alcestis
Author: Karen Bassi
Editor: Melissa Meuller
Editor: Mario Telo
Abstract: Scholarship on Euripides' Alcestis has been principally concerned with genre and characterization. Attention to material objects in the play has focused on Admetus' infamous vow to have a likeness made of Alcestis' body so that he can embrace it in his bed (d?µa? t? s?? e??as???, 348-349). In this chapter, this likeness initiates a reading the play that exemplifies what I am calling tragedy's morbid materialism. The argument is indebted to two recent and related theoretical positions: Jane Bennett's defense of vital materialism on the one hand and Bonnie Honig's critique of mortalist humanism, on the other. The former introduces an argument for the singularity of the human corpse as an inanimate or post-animate object; the latter situates this singularity in terms of the shared finitude of living humans and non-living things. Together, these positions provide a theoretical basis for understanding the material, ontological, and epistemological effects of Alcestis' death and improbable return to life.
Year: 2018
Primary URL: https://www.bloomsbury.com/us/the-materialities-of-greek-tragedy-9781350028791/
Primary URL Description: Publisher's website
Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
Book Title: The Materialities of Greek Tragedy
ISBN: 978-1-3500-287

Mimêsis and Mortality: Re-performance and the Dead among the Living in Hecuba and Hamlet (Book Section)
Title: Mimêsis and Mortality: Re-performance and the Dead among the Living in Hecuba and Hamlet
Author: Karen Bassi
Editor: Anna Uhlig
Editor: Richard Hunter
Abstract: Abstract (148 words): This paper focuses on the ghost in tragedy as a singular instance of re-performance. The argument starts from two related premises. First, that as an embodied specter the tragic ghost emphasizes the temporal and ontological contingencies that define the relationship between a dramatic actor and his character. Second, that the tragic ghost is a figure for disavowing, i.e., both acknowledging and resisting, the finality of death. Following a discussion of dramatic imitation (µ?µ?s??) as a means of "leading souls" (???a????a) in Plato and Aristotle, I argue that re-performance is exemplified in the tragic ghost's uncanny return from the dead. Here re-performance is not a matter of theater history or reception but of dramatic µ?µ?s?? as the visible and audible return of the dead among the living. The chapter ends with an examination of this conclusion in a comparative reading of the ghosts in Euripides' Hecuba and Shakespeare's Hamlet.
Year: 2017
Primary URL: https://www.cambridge.org/core/books/imagining-reperformance-in-ancient-culture/0883D6CC921C33B443FF0B7039E2CF7B
Primary URL Description: Publisher's website
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Book Title: Imagining Reperformance in Ancient Culture
ISBN: 9781316597798


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