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Euripides: Medea (Cambridge Translations from Greek Drama) Paperback – 20 Apr 2000

4.1 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 122 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press (20 April 2000)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521644798
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521644792
  • Product Dimensions: 13.1 x 1 x 19.8 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 163,603 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

"This handsomely produced volume tips the scales as the heavyweight among Euripidean commentaries. It is a major philological achievement, which vastly enhances understanding of the play." Justina Gregory, AJP


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4.1 out of 5 stars
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Format: Paperback
This play is the archetype of all the others on the same subject. And the play is fairly clear on the character and the crimes of Medea.

First it is entirely located in Corinth when Jason is on the eve of marrying the daughter of Creon, king of Corinth. It is announced to her just before Creon comes and announces the further edict of his: she is banned with her two sons, and after her begging for some time, she is provided a twenty-four hour period before being expelled by force. This wedding is further argued by Jason as being a political calculation to ensure security and comfort to her and the sons.

She from the very start of the play positions herself in the role of the rejected wife though her marriage with Jason was based on an oath in front of the gods. She accuses Jason of breaking his oath and of committing what is perjury. From the very start she positions herself on the road to vengeance. She will hardly waver on and from that road.

But she reminds Jason of all the dirty acts she did for him: she betrayed her own father; she helped Jason vanquish the fire bulls, the soldiers that were growing in the field he had ploughed from some teeth of some dragon and finally helped steal the golden fleece while the dragon keeping it was kept asleep by Medea's magic; she killed her own brother, she dumped his body cut up into pieces into the ocean to slow down her father's chase of them; in Iolcus she fools Pelias' daughters into killing their father believing they could then both revive and rejuvenate him (Pelias was the cause of all the problems of Jason with the assassination of Jason's father that enabled Pelias to seize the throne).

So Jason is ungrateful.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Excellent play, although short, it is very powerful, and this version is very easy to read with useful notes for each page. Particularly useful if studying it for drama/english. I bought new, so in perfect condition.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Very easy to understand and helped me through my Classical Civilisations GCSE.
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By C. Hawkes TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 1 Mar. 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Of all the Greek tragedies, Medea arguably has the most modern concerns. Despite its shocking conclusion - Medea's ob scene murder of her two children condoned by Helios, the Sun God - this play revolves around the refugee experience, the question of historical/mythological narrative viewpoint, and raises questions about the position of women in a phallocentric society.

Harrison's translation is fluent and treats the play as a play in a modern idiom. The notes are also very useful, both to the A-Level scholar and the interested play-goer.

So why not 5 stars? Despite the above, I don't feel it really moves on significantly from Vellacott's seminal 1976 translation - a little more idiomatic, but not as radical as Tom Paulin's, to which I HAVE given 5 stars. Having said that, if this is to be used for A-Level study, then the notes and activities make the Harrison the preferred version, whilst the Paulin makes for a more compelling production.
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