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Gender and Politics in Greek Tragedy

Second Printing


Michael X. Zelenak

Theatrical tragedy, like all other major civic institutions of the fifth-century B.C. Athenian democratic patriarchy, was exclusively male. The course of western drama changed when women characters (played by transvestite male performers) were introduced. Gender and Politics in Greek Tragedy explores themes and issues of gender identity and political ideology in plays by Aeschylus ( Suppliant Maidens, Oresteia), Sophocles ( Antigone, Philoctetes), and Euripides ( Alcestis, Medea, Orestes, Helen, Iphigeneia in Aulis, Bakkhai). This is the first book-length treatment of the themes of gender and politics in ancient Greek tragedy.