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Tragedy, the Greeks, and Us

Best Seller
Tragedy, the Greeks, and Us by Simon Critchley
Paperback $16.95
Mar 17, 2020 | ISBN 9780525564645

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  • Mar 17, 2020 | ISBN 9780525564645

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  • Apr 16, 2019 | ISBN 9781524747954

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Praise

“A valuable corrective . . . in [a] brash, freewheeling style. . . . Lively. . . . Critchley’s inquiry offers many surprises, but most unexpected is his interest in the Greek sophists.” —James Romm, The New York Review of Books

“Frank, personal readings of hallowed plots, including Euripides’ Trojan Women and Aeschylus’ Oresteia. . . . Pay attention and you can reinvent your life.” —The New Yorker

“A striking portrayal of Greek tragedy. . . . A well-pitched and paced primer, which is fun to read” —The Times Literary Supplement (London)
 
“A thrill . . . riveting. . . . A rather intoxicating dance with words, ideas, texts, the vortex of the life of the mind in the world, and perhaps beyond it. Critchley is an authoritative reader, and, though not a classicist, he proves an erudite, scholarly guide through layers of myth, reason, history and their interpretation, and overall a truly beguiling one . . .  Often reminiscent of Arendt, Adorno or even Levinas, verbally affluent, muscular and provocative . . . He is a particularly gifted wordsmith, an astute orator, a shrewd and learned disputant. Those who encounter tragedy for the first time on the pages of his book will not fail to be bewitched.” Bookanista

“Stirring. . . . Refreshing. . . . Irreverent. . . . Critchley writes with laudable directness and erudition” NPR

“Substantial introductory material on tragedy and ancient philosophy; it is energetic, engaging and thought-provoking without too much abstraction and with just enough detail to add flavor. . . . It has something of the chatty vigor of a successful seminar discussion. . . . Infectiously enthusiastic. . . . Genuinely invigorating.” New Statesman

“Critchley finds a perspective on tragedy open to its revelatory and transformative power. Readers feel that power as they probe the dazzling words and tempestuous emotions in the tragedies of Aeschylus, Sophocles, and—above all—Euripides. . . . Postmodern philosophy collides with ancient drama, generating the heat of passion, the sparks of illumination.” —Booklist [starred]

“[An] intelligent, rigorous book. Dedicated readers will have the sense of being at a thoughtful scholar’s side as he works through an intractable intellectual problem.” —Publishers Weekly

“An erudite reconsideration of Greek tragedy. . . . For students of Greek drama, a revelatory contemplation of the theater’s enduring power. ” —Kirkus Reviews

“Combining a thorough knowledge of Attic drama, fluency with the scholarly literature, and an engaging wit, Critchley’s treatment is sophisticated yet accessible to thoughtful general readers.” —Library Journal

“Engaging and congenial . . . [Tragedy, The Greeks and Us] makes the cogent, compelling argument that we ignore Greek Tragedy at our own peril.” New York Journal of Books

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