• Secondary Characters' Rhetorical Skills in Fifth-Century Athenian Tragedy

    Author(s):
    Elodie Paillard (see profile)
    Date:
    2021
    Group(s):
    Ancient Greece & Rome, Classical Philology and Linguistics, Classical Tradition, Greek and Roman Intellectual History
    Subject(s):
    Classical Greek culture, Theater, Social history, Classical Greek literature, Greek tragedy
    Item Type:
    Book chapter
    Permanent URL:
    http://dx.doi.org/10.17613/2jff-zj83
    Abstract:
    This chapter examines the rhetorical skills displayed by secondary (low–status) characters in the extant tragedies of Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides. “Rhetorical skills” are here broadly understood as the abilities required to have one’s voice heard and one’s opinion taken into account. These speaking abilities contribute to the socio–political characterization of tragic figures on stage and can foster the process of identification between (part of ) the audience and the fictional characters. Rhetorical abilities, however basic, were indeed a key to active political participation for Athenian citizens. As democracy evolved quickly during the fifth century, non–élite citizens began to assume an increasingly important role in political decisions processes, thanks to newly acquired speaking/ rhetorical skills. This chapter will thus also examine whether this phenomenon can be linked to a clear chronological evolution, between early and late plays, in the rhetorical skills displayed by secondary characters on stage.
    Metadata:
    Published as:
    Book chapter    
    Status:
    Published
    Last Updated:
    2 months ago
    License:
    All Rights Reserved
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