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Ibsen's Drama: Right Action and Tragic Joy
     

Ibsen's Drama: Right Action and Tragic Joy

by Theoharis Constantine Theoharis
 

Ibsen’s Drama: Right Action and Tragic Joy argues that in his late plays, Ibsen struggled with and finally repudiated the Aristotelian ideas of reality and change that held sway over the earlier part of his career, and more generally over nineteenth century drama and culture. The first chapter analyzes Aristotle’s Poetics, which

Overview

Ibsen’s Drama: Right Action and Tragic Joy argues that in his late plays, Ibsen struggled with and finally repudiated the Aristotelian ideas of reality and change that held sway over the earlier part of his career, and more generally over nineteenth century drama and culture. The first chapter analyzes Aristotle’s Poetics, which centers on the classical relation of catharsis, rational agency, and intelligible change in human affairs. The second chapter presents Nietzsche’s transformation of those topics into a modernist poetics and a modernist agenda for living. The rest of the book analyzes Ghosts, Rosmersholm, and The Master Builder and relates Ibsen’s formal, intellectual, and cultural innovations in these plays to Nietzsche’s assault on the Aristotelian humanism that Victorian Europe valued so highly.

Editorial Reviews

Booknews
Theoharis (English, Harvard U.) argues that in his late work the 19th-century playwright struggled with and finally repudiated the Aristotelian ideas of reality and change that dominated the early part of career. He looks specifically at "Ghosts", "Rosmersholm", and "The Master Builder" and finds a Nietzschean subversion of the popular Victorian theater and culture, and points out Ibsen's efforts to reveal how life could pass heroically from right action to tragic joy. Annotation c. by Book News, Inc., Portland, Or.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780312160784
Publisher:
Palgrave Macmillan
Publication date:
11/28/1996
Pages:
320
Product dimensions:
5.81(w) x 8.54(h) x 1.18(d)

Meet the Author

Theoharis C. Theoharis teaches at Harvard University and is Editor of The Boston Book Review.

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