Tales from the Greek Drama

Tales from the Greek Drama

Tales from the Greek Drama

Tales from the Greek Drama

Excerpt

No spot in history ever shone with more concentrated brilliance than the Athens of 2,400 years ago. It was almost as if men like Lincoln, Einstein, Freud, Shakespeare, and Michelangelo had all been fellow townsmen. New ideas were exploding everywhere. Democracy had ousted tyranny; the poorest citizens enjoyed a new equality under the law. As freemen, they had beaten back the might of Persia. Athens had become the school and jewel of Hellas, her glories symbolized in the building of the Parthenon.

This was the golden age, though it had a few shadows. Women had little share in this brave new life. Democracy also excluded slaves and developed a weakness for rabblerousers. Some taint was attached to Athens’ new-found wealth, and her allies, freed from the Persian threat, soon began to chafe at her arrogant yoke. Her glory and honor were further diminished during the Peloponnesian War.

THE BIRTH OF DRAMA

It was in this brief golden age that drama was born and reached such heights as were never equaled in the next two thousand years. Drama means “action,” but the Greek drama . . .

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