Strattis, tragedy, and comedy

Miles, Sarah N. (2009) Strattis, tragedy, and comedy. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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Abstract

This study comprises a translation, textual commentary, and discussion of the fragments of the Old comic dramatist Strattis which engage with tragedy. It forms the centre of a wider examination of the art of paratragedy and tragic parody in Old Comedy because paratragedy represents the earliest reception of tragedy and one that is contemporary with the initial live performances of tragic plays. Ancient and modern scholarship alike has viewed Aristophanes as the dominant figure in the art of paratragedy and tragic parody. Strattis, a contemporary of Aristophanes, was active in the late fifth and early fourth centuries BC and the fragments of his comedies indicate a sustained and wide ranging interaction with contemporary tragedy which is rivalled only by Aristophanic comedy. This is particularly remarkable since the extant corpus of Strattis numbers less than ninety fragments.

This work explores the phenomenon of paratragedy beyond Aristophanic paratragedy and raises awareness of the importance of Strattis in this respect. It begins with a survey of paratragedy in other non-Aristophanic fragments of Old Comedy and it examines the various ways that comedy engages with tragedy, indicating the depth and breadth of paratragedy in comic fragments. This provides the foundations on which to examine the fragments of Strattis through a text, translation and commentary on those fragments that engage with tragedy. It leads to a discussion of the works of Strattis overall for their use of tragedy and myth, which allows us to note characteristics of Strattis’ work. This enables a comparison of the paratragedy in the comedies of Strattis and Aristophanes which allows us to reassess the uniqueness of Aristophanic paratragedy and to consider reasons for the popularity of paratragedy in the late fifth century BC.

Item Type:Thesis (PhD)
Supervisors:Sommerstein, A.H.
Uncontrolled Keywords:Strattis, Aristophanes, Paratragedy, Tragedy, Comedy, Drama, Greek, Performance
Faculties/Schools:UK Campuses > Faculty of Arts > School of Humanities
ID Code:887
Deposited By:Dr Sarah Miles
Deposited On:13 Nov 2009 10:01
Last Modified:13 Nov 2009 10:33

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