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Greek Fragments in Postmodern FramesRewriting Tragedy 1970-2005$
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Eleftheria Ioannidou

Print publication date: 2017

Print ISBN-13: 9780199664115

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: February 2017

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199664115.001.0001

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From Author–God to Textual Communion

From Author–God to Textual Communion

(p.103) 4 From Author–God to Textual Communion
Greek Fragments in Postmodern Frames

Eleftheria Ioannidou

Oxford University Press

The fourth chapter discusses hybrid plays that unsettle the distinction between translation and adaptation. The chapter relates this mode of rewriting to the idea of the death of the Author, coined by Roland Barthes in the late 1960s. Ted Hughes’s Alcestis and Simon Armitage’s Mister Heracles adapt the figure of Heracles to contemplate the demise of the male hero via a translational practice that embodies the demise of the male Author. In Brendan Kennelly’s versions of Greek tragedy, the same practice is adopted to voice the silenced female stories. In Wole Soyinka’s postcolonial adaptation The Bacchae of Euripides: A Communion Rite, the end of the authorial patriarchy entails the cultural fluidity of the classical canon.

Keywords:   Roland Barthes, death of the Author, Ted Hughes, Alcestis, Simon Armitage, Heracles, Brendan Kennelly, The Trojan Women, Wole Soyinka, The Bacchae of Euripides: A Communion Rite

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