Debate concerning the extent to which the tragic chorus is marginal to the dramatic action has prevailed in discussions of choral identity and, more broadly, Greek tragedy as a whole, since the time of Aristotle. Furthermore, it is supposed that choruses not tied to the role of Athenian military-age men are all the more marginal. Yet choral identity challenges our understanding of the ancient Greek tragic chorus-and thus of Greek tragedy as a whole-because the dramatic identities of tragic choruses are, with few exceptions, so different from the identities of the plays' external audiences. Choral Identity and the Chorus of Elders in Greek Tragedy presents U.S. Dhuga's radical reappraisal of the ancient Greek tragic chorus. Through a close reading of the speech, song, and choreography among choruses of old men, Dhuga overturns previous assumptions about the chorus of elders, arguing that their decrepitude and supposed low social rank resulted in the historically dismissive view of the chorus of elders. This book demonstrates that choruses of elders are instead remarkably central to the tragic action. Dhuga guides us through detailed yet readable analyses of the choruses in Sophocles' Oedipus Coloneus and Antigone, Euripides' Heraclidae and Hercules Furens, and Aeschylus' Agamemnon. Through these works, Dhuga broadens our understanding of the ongoing, if not increasing, importance that the chorus commands in Greek tragedy. Choral Identity and the Chorus of Elders in Greek Tragedy is a must-read for anyone who wants a more complete understanding of the power and complexity of Greek tragedy.
Chapter 1 Introduction. Chapter 2 Chapter One. Choral Identity in Sophocles' Oedipus Coloneus Chapter 3 Chapter Two. Choral Identity in Euripides' Heraclidae Chapter 4 Chapter Three. Choral Identity in Euripides' Hercules Furens and Aeschylus' Agamemnon Chapter 5 Chapter Four. Choral Identity in Sophocles' Antigone