By Evina Sistakou
This examine makes a speciality of the reception of tragedy and the tragic in Hellenistic poetry. It illustrates how classical tragedy and the tragic notion have been integrated within the poems of Callimachus and Theocritus, Apollonius Argonautica, the iambic Alexandra and overdue Hellenistic poetry. It demonstrates that the tragic was once no longer doomed to failure within the postclassical international yet lived on during the works of the good Alexandrian poets and their fans. "
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Additional info for Tragic Failures: Alexandrian Responses to Tragedy and the Tragic
G. Rep. b-c), or its modern equivalent of ‘showing’ or ‘telling’ in literature (on the topic see Kirby ), we should not overlook the added emphasis placed not simply on the means by which a poet represents his story but primarily on the performativity of poetry in the theatre. On this meaning of σκηνικός note its juxtaposition with other types of mass spectacle (e. g. in Philo Legatio ad Gaium ὅταν παρατυγχάνῃς σκηνικοῖς ἀγῶσιν ἢ γυμνικοῖς ἢ τοῖς κατὰ τὰς ἱπποδρομίας or Athen. γυμνικοὺς δὲ ἀγῶνας, ἔφη, διατιθέτωσαν Ἠλεῖοι, Κορίνθιοι δὲ θυμελικούς, ᾿Aθηναῖοι δὲ σκηνικούς).
What the case of Aristoxenus and other Peripatetics demonstrates is a shift of emphasis to extrinsic features, pertaining to melos, and also to lexis and opsis; in the passage just quoted, the formation of stylistic categories anticipates Callimachean criticism of epic/tragic grandeur against leptotes beyond the confines of specific genres and also the emergence of abstract aesthetic terms, such as the notion of the sublime attributed to ‘Longinus’. One distinct category of Peripatetic writings are the collections of tragic plots by Heracleides of Pontus (probably in his treatise Περὶ τῶν παρ᾽ Εὐριπίδῃ καὶ Σοφοκλεῖ), the summaries of which developed into the philological hypotheses prefacing Greek dramas which were attributed in antiquity to Dicaearchus of Messana (fr.
Dionysus was regarded as the vitalizing force behind wine, orgies and mysteries, representing an icon of the emerging New Age. The Ptolemies claimed descent from Dionysus, so it was only natural that in the religious framework of the god’s cult drama could and should be performed regularly. However, the new festivals were fairly differentiated from the great City Dionysia of classical Athens. As will be shown below, performative habits changed radically, old repertoire and new plays were hardly performed in their entirety, and there was increased emphasis on song, music, dance and pantomime as opposed to dramatized speech or the very presence of a tragic Chorus, both vital for the staging of classical drama.