The Function of the Ekkyklema in Greek Theatre: The Sculptural Display of Murdered Victims and the Success of Greek Tragedy for the State

The Function of the Ekkyklema in Greek Theatre: The Sculptural Display of Murdered Victims and the Success of Greek Tragedy for the State

By: Joel D Eis (author)Hardback

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This is a new take on the topic with considerable new scholarship about how the ekkyklema worked semiotically, dramaturgically and politically within Greek tragedy. In this fascinating and well-documented cultural study the author explores the proposition that the success of Greek tragedy was connected to the pre-mediated use of religious tropes in the drama, thus triggering profoundly ancient and effective traditional loyalties. Specifically the book lays out a well-documented argument that these devices, within both the form and content of the drama, were encouraged - if not required - for propagandistic purposes by the sponsors of the dramatic contests held in Athens as part of the Festival Dionysiad. This work explores the connections to the very earliest aspects of Dionysic worship and borrowed cultural features and builds these into the construction we know as the Greek Tragedy. Several important scholars note that this book explores the workings of this standard stage device, apparently used in a least one third of the extant plays, in more depth than any previously study ever undertaken.

About Author

Professor Joel D. Eis has taught design at five universities. He has written dozens of articles on sceneography, theatre history. He is the author of a text on stagecraft and a previous monograph for Edwin Mellen Press. Professor Eis has produced over three hundred theatrical designs for professional and academic theatre including the setting for many of the Greek plays, addressing the conundrums discussed in this book. He currently designs in the San Francisco area and owns the Rebound Bookstore in San Rafael, California.


List of Illustrations; A Special Introductory Foreword by Emeritus Lincoln Professor of Classical Archaeology and Art, Oxford University and the Ashmolean Museum; Foreword by G. Ray Thompson, PhD.,; Introduction; Chapter 1: That Old-Time Religion: Foundations and Resurgence of the Dionysian Cult; Chapter 2: Sources of the Ekkyklema in Ancient Ritual; Chapter 3: Three Traditions: The Pharmakos, the God-in-the-Wagon and the Figure on the Ekkyklema; Chapter 4: Public Sculpture and the Ekkyklema; Chapter 5: The Politics of the Dionysian Festival; Chapter 6: The Festival & Contest: Art Serves the City-State; Chapter 7: Greek Poetry and Other Contributions To The Birth of Tragedy; And More.

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9780773435278
  • Format: Hardback
  • Number Of Pages: 360
  • ID: 9780773435278
  • ISBN10: 0773435271

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