Helen

ISBN-10: 0195077105
ISBN-13: 9780195077100
Edition: Revised 
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Description: Outstepping the literal bounds of genre, Euripides' Helen has been referred to by scholars as both a tragedy and a comedy. In this sensitive new translation by James Michie and Colin Leach, Euripides' fragile structure of subtlety, in both timing  More...

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Book details

List price: $19.99
Publisher: Oxford University Press, Incorporated
Publication date: 10/29/1992
Binding: Paperback
Pages: 128
Size: 5.50" wide x 8.25" long x 0.50" tall
Weight: 0.198
Language: English

Outstepping the literal bounds of genre, Euripides' Helen has been referred to by scholars as both a tragedy and a comedy. In this sensitive new translation by James Michie and Colin Leach, Euripides' fragile structure of subtlety, in both timing and tone, is beautifully preserved.From the myth ascribed to the Sicilian poet Stesichorus, Helen plays on the question of two Helens: one a phantom in Troy, and the other the real Helen who remained in Egypt. A myriad of reversals, thought-provoking examples of differing orders of reality, and juxtapositions of opposites, allow Euripides to comment on the futility of war and the distinction between appearance and reality.

Euripides, one of the three great Greek tragedians was born in Attica probably in 485 B.C. of well-to-do parents. In his youth he cultivated gymnastic pursuits and studied philosophy and rhetoric. Soon after he received recognition for a play that he had written, Euripides left Athens for the court of Archelaus, king of Macedonia. In his tragedies, Euripides represented individuals not as they ought to be but as they are. His excellence lies in the tenderness and pathos with which he invested many of his characters. Euripides' attitude toward the gods was iconoclastic and rationalistic; toward humans-notably his passionate female characters-his attitude was deeply sympathetic. In his dramas, Euripides separated the chorus from the action, which was the first step toward the complete elimination of the chorus. He used the prologue as an introduction and explanation. Although Euripides has been charged with intemperate use of the deus ex machina, by which artifice a god is dragged in abruptly at the end to resolve a situation beyond human powers, he created some of the most unforgettable psychological portraits. Fragments of about fifty-five plays survive; some were discovered as recently as 1906. Among his best-known plays are Alcestis (438 B.C.), Medea and Philoctetes (431 B.C.), Electra (417 B.C.), Iphigenia in Tauris (.413 B.C.), The Trojan Women (415 B.C.), and Iphigenia in Aulis Iphigenia (c.405 B.C.). Euripides died in Athens in 406. Shortly after his death his reputation rose and has never diminished.

Introduction
Helen
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