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Electra

by Sophocles

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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631926,587 (3.65)23
In this edition of Sophocles' Electra, one of the greatest tragedies in Greek or any literature, Mr Kells presents the play as a study in revenge, but in a subtle way whose meaning depends upon the continuous use of dramatic irony. He relates the confrontations of principle and character depicted to the social and political controversies of the period in which Sophocles was writing. The introduction describes the background to the play, explains some of the main features of Sophocles' style, and outlines an interpretation which is fully worked out in the detailed commentary. There are appendices on metre and the text. The edition is intended for use by senior school and undergraduate students, and all those concerned to read and appreciate the play in the original.… (more)

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» See also 23 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 6 (next | show all)
While I loved the dialogue, the pacing of this Hamlet and Antigone caper was a bit rushed. The chorus was particularly effective, the atmosphere resonates with revenge. Electra pines but does not waste. Her timid sister cringes in comparison to this inferno of vengeance. Then suddenly she has a cohort and the circumstances of his arrival afford their nemesis interlopers opportunity to even further impugn their deeds—or do they?

Aegisthus, what were you thinking? There is a nobility in the Divine. There’s also Icarian agency. Think Cobain, “Come back as Fire/Burn all the liars/Leave a blanket of ash on the ground. The plot was the only one pursued by three of the Greek masters (Euripides and Aeschylus being the other two) which invites comparisons, though apparently the chronology is regrettably unclear. ( )
  jonfaith | Feb 22, 2019 |
Hmm. Well. Pound has shifted the play into some kind of 1950s American idiom, which is distracting and anachronistic, but he’s also left a heap of the original ancient Greek in, for dramatic effect. The overall feel is of watching a subtitled film, where the actors have also been badly dubbed into English. Nothing matches, nothing scans, and the whole thing is an unwatchable mess. ( )
  NKarman | Feb 3, 2018 |
50. Electra by Sophocles, translated by Anne Carson
- introduction and notes by Michael Shaw
- editors’ forward by Peter Burian and Alan Shapiro

first performed: c. 405 bce
translation 2001 (Anne's introduction comes from a 1993 lecture)
format: 130 page Oxford University Press paperback
acquired: borrowed from my library
read: Aug 11-15
rating: 4 stars

Just another Greek Tragedy, but this was different in presentation. Anne Carson's translation was excellent and brought alive the tension in Electra's language in the first key first parts of this play. And the two introductions, one by Shaw and the other by Carson, pick apart the play and it's structure, revealing a lot more of what is there.

The play itself is a tragedy with a "happy" ending. Electra is trapped, living with her mother and her mother's lover, she is in serious danger, and cannot marry and bear any children. She can only cooperate. But, her brother Orestes will rescue her by killing their own mother, Clytemnestra, and her lover, Aegisthus, with the help of some clever word play.

(in front of a covered corpse, that Aegisthus does not know is Clytemnestra.)

Orestes:
This isn't my corpse—it's yours.
Yours to look at, yours to eulogize.

Aegisthus:
Yes good point. I have to agree.
You there—Clytemnestra must be about in the house—
call her for me.

Orestes:
She is right before you. No need to look elsewhere.


Clearly a happy play.

Electra, despite her trap, becomes a presence. She maintains pitiful public devotion to her father, living miserably in mourning, and, in doing so, skillfully wields some power and influence. At the heart of this play is Electra's language and how she works over the other characters. She becomes the fury who harasses the murderers.

"By dread things I am compelled. I know that.
I see the trap closing.
I know what I am. "


2016
https://www.librarything.com/topic/226898#5695936 ( )
  dchaikin | Aug 19, 2016 |
1
  kutheatre | Jun 7, 2015 |
Edition: Fifth Edition // Descr: xv, 216 p. 18 cm. // Series: Call No. { 882 S6 5 } With Notes by R.C. Jebb and R.H. Mather. // //
  ColgateClassics | Oct 26, 2012 |
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» Add other authors (152 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Sophoclesprimary authorall editionscalculated
Crofts, ThomasEditorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Koolschijn, GerardTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Masqueray, PaulTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Vondel, Joost van denTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Watling, E.F.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Young, Sir GeorgeTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed

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In this edition of Sophocles' Electra, one of the greatest tragedies in Greek or any literature, Mr Kells presents the play as a study in revenge, but in a subtle way whose meaning depends upon the continuous use of dramatic irony. He relates the confrontations of principle and character depicted to the social and political controversies of the period in which Sophocles was writing. The introduction describes the background to the play, explains some of the main features of Sophocles' style, and outlines an interpretation which is fully worked out in the detailed commentary. There are appendices on metre and the text. The edition is intended for use by senior school and undergraduate students, and all those concerned to read and appreciate the play in the original.

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