Sophocles’ Antigone National Taiwan University
Sophocles Antigone is one of the most widely studied, taught, performed and adapted ancient Greek tragedy in the modern world. Unfortunately, most of the approaches have paid more attention to modern theoretical constructs of literature, rather than to the social context within which this play was originally produced. In this course we will try to recover the meaning of the play for its original audience. To do so we will examine fundamental issues of classical Athenian society (like the representation of Thebes as a negative model of Athens; funeral, religious and wedding rituals; and the political ideology of Athenian Democracy). In the final weeks of the course, equipped with an understanding of the original meaning of the play, we will examine some of the most influential interpretations of the play with a view to discover to what extent they illuminate its meaning and to what extent they distort it in an attempt to appropriate its prestige.
Week 1 Introduction: Antigone and Antigones, Context, Meaning and Literature
Week2 Anti-Athens: Thebes in Athenian Myth-making
Week3 Prologue (Antigone 1-99)
Week4 Women in Athens, Ismene and Antigone as types of Athenian Women
Week5 Chorus Entrance and First Episode (Antigone 100-331)
Week6 Funeral Rites, Women and Athenian State Interference
Week7 First Choral Song and Second Episode (Antigone 332-581)
Week8 Religion, Prophecy and Omens in Athenian Society
Week9 Second Choral Song and Third Episode (Antigone 582-780)
Week10 Citizen Duties in Athenian Democracy
Week11 Third Choral Song and Fourth Episode (Antigone 781-943)
Week12 Wedding Rites in Athens
Week13 Fourth Choral Song and Fifth Episode (Antigone 944-1114)
Week14Public Advice and Collective Decisions in Athenian Democracy
Week15Fifth Choral Song and Finale (Antigone 1115-1352)
Week16 Hegel, Dialectics and Antigone
Week17 Lacan, Psychoanalysis and Antigone
Week18 Feminist Criticism and Antigone
It is expected that the course will help students
build a methodology for understanding and interpreting other cultures;
enable them realize the importance of social context in literary criticism;
foster a critical attitude towards theories and interpretations.
*Restrict to graduate students.
Online Course Requirement
Graduate Institute of Foreign Languages and Literatures
Site for Inquiry
Please inquire about the courses at the address below.
Email address: http://www.forex.ntu.edu.tw/main.php?lang=en