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To what extent does Ibsens Hedda Gabler update the conventions of Greek tragedy that can be found in Euripides Medea?
The first 200 words of this essay...
To what extent does Ibsen's 'Hedda Gabler' update the conventions of Greek tragedy that can be found in Euripides' 'Medea'?
'But now comes the funny part, Hedda. Or should I really say the tragic part!'1 From the outset, Henrik Ibsen's realist play 'Hedda Gabler' perverts and mutates the conventions of Greek tragedy which can be found in Euripides' drama, 'Medea'. But to what extent does it do this? It can be seen, at least from the surface, 'Hedda Gabler' is re imagining Greek tragedy to the greatest of extents, insofar as, in the quotation above, the characters themselves are unsure as to what genre this play, which presents so many Aristotelian conventions, such as the idea of a clear exposition and temporal intensity, found throughout Medea, is representing. In this essay, I will show how Ibsen has subtly and successfully manipulated Euripides' classic to his own ends, and how, in my opinion, he updates the conventions found therein to a great extent in order to further his own desires of dramatic impact, increase the importance of the character of Eilert Loevborg, and to make the bathetic death of Hedda Gabler allow the audience to truly question the
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