Guilt by Descent: Moral Inheritance and Decision Making in Greek Tragedy

Guilt by Descent: Moral Inheritance and Decision Making in Greek Tragedy

by N. J. Sewell-Rutter


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Blighted and accursed families are an inescapable feature of Greek tragedy, and many scholars have treated questions of inherited guilt, curses, and divine causation. N.J. Sewell-Rutter gives these familiar issues a fresh appraisal, arguing that tragedy is a medium that fuses the conceptual with the provoking and exciting of emotion, neither of which can be ignored if the texts are to be fully understood. He pays particular attention to Aeschylus' Seven against Thebes and the Phoenician Women of Euripides, both of which dramatize the sorrows of the later generations of the House of Oedipus, but in very different, and perhaps complementary, ways. All Greek quotations are translated, making his study thoroughly accessible to the non-specialist reader.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780199227334
Publisher: Oxford University Press
Publication date: 12/15/2007
Series: Oxford Classical Monographs
Pages: 240
Product dimensions: 8.60(w) x 5.40(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

N. J. Sewell-Rutter was previously Lecturer in Greek, Corpus Christi College, Oxford.

Table of Contents

1. Preliminary studies: the supernatural and causation in Herodotus
2. Inherited guilt
3. Curses
4. Erinyes
5. Irruption and insight? The intangible burden of the supernatural in Sophocles' Labdacid plays and 'Electra'
6. Fate, freedom, decision making: Eteocles and others

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