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L’unità dell’«Alcesti» e la doppia ricezione

digital L’unità dell’«Alcesti» e la doppia ricezione
Article
journal COMUNICAZIONI SOCIALI
issue COMUNICAZIONI SOCIALI - 2004 - 3. Sacrifici al femminile. Alcesti in scena da Euripide a Raboni
title L’unità dell’«Alcesti» e la doppia ricezione
author
publisher Vita e Pensiero
format Article | Pdf
online since 09-2017
issn 03928667 (print) | 18277969 (digital)
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This paper addresses the combined presence, in Alcestis by Euripides, of the theme of love – within which new horizons are opened up, ‘uncovering’ the essential link between eros and thanatos and creating the myth of the survival of the couple in the other world – and the moral theme, which expresses a strongly critical attitude towards the privilege enjoyed by Admetus. The difficulty in accepting this combined presence, which characterizes the reception of the tragedy in contemporary criticism, is none other than the reflex of a profound and centuries-old cultural malaise that affects the modern response to Alcestis in numerous different versions of the latter. During the Seventeenth and Eighteenth century the glorification of love and its thaumaturgy needed an ‘innocent’ Admetus who does not realize, until too late, that he has received the gift of life and who, as long as he can, rejects it firmly, thereby eliminating the otherworldly project which, in the Euripidean tragedy, precisely his ‘egoism’ allowed him to cultivate. In more recent scenarios, on the other hand, exemplary texts such as those by Browning and Yourcenar downplay the erotic theme as compared to a stark vision of human frailty and of the error men fall into by rejecting death, the locus of knowledge and values.

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Anno: 2018 - n. 2

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