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Euripides’s Revolution under CoverAn Essay$
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Pietro Pucci

Print publication date: 2016

Print ISBN-13: 9781501700613

Published to Cornell Scholarship Online: August 2016

DOI: 10.7591/cornell/9781501700613.001.0001

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The Protection of the Self and the Role of Sophia

The Protection of the Self and the Role of Sophia

3. The Protection of the Self and the Role of Sophia
Euripides’s Revolution under Cover

Pietro Pucci

Cornell University Press

This chapter examines how Euripides's plays stage ideological horizons in which the self (that is, the human mind or consciousness) appears to be the autonomous source of its decisions and actions. In particular, it considers sophia, whose healing function is emphasized by many characters and choruses in Euripides's plays. Euripides seems to argue that the healing function of sophia protects the self from instantiations of otherness and alterity. This chapter discusses three themes: the medical image of “healing,” an adaptation in modern ideology of the traditional view that poetry induces “forgetfulness of evils and rest from cares”; the notion of “gain,” which is so central in Medea's perception of her revenge; and the fundamental idea of the sorrows that human beings must endure.

Keywords:   plays, self, sophia, healing, Euripides, otherness, alterity, gain, sorrows, human beings

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