An Oresteia: Agamemnon by Aiskhylos; Elektra by Sophokles; Orestes by Euripides (Paperback)

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An Oresteia: Agamemnon by Aiskhylos; Elektra by Sophokles; Orestes by Euripides (Paperback)
Translated by Anne Carson

In An Oresteia, the classicist Anne Carson combines three different versions of the tragedy of the house of Atreus: Aeschylus’s Agamemnon, Sophocles’s Elektra and Euripides’s Orestes.

After the murder of her daughter Iphigenia by her husband Agamemnon, Clytemnestra exacts a mother’s revenge, murdering Agamemnon and his mistress, Cassandra. Displeased with Clytemnestra’s actions, Apollo calls on her son, Orestes, to avenge his father’s death with the help of his sister Elektra. In the end, Orestes is driven mad by the Furies for his bloody betrayal of family. Condemned to death by the people of Argos, he and Elektra must justify their actions – or flout society, justice, and the gods.

Carson’s translation combines contemporary language with the traditional structures and rhetoric of Greek tragedy, opening up this ancient tale of vengeance to a modern audience and revealing the essential wit and morbidity of the original plays.

“A marvelous single-volume translation... [Carson’s] muscular reimagining removes these ancient classics from their dusty pedestals and allows their savage, glittering contents (and malcontents) to breathe. Hurrah.” (The New York Times)

“To those who would doubt the capacity of any 21st century poet to follow Ezra Pound’s first commandment to ‘make it new,’ a constant, ever-jolting answer is provided by Anne Carson... This is NEW.” (The Buffalo News)

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux; 1st edition (March 2, 2010)
  • Dimensions: 5.62” W x 0.74” D x 8.29” H


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