Euripides: Three Tragedies, Texts, and Films


Euripides is often called the “most tragic,” “most modern,” and “most decadent” of the major Greek tragedians. Of his ninety some known tragedies we’ll read, discuss, and view films of three: Iphigenia at Aulis and Electra, about causes and consequences of the Trojan War, and The Bacchae, about Thebes maddened by Dionysus and wine. For films we’ll watch two brilliant subtitled Greek language works by Michael Cacoyannis (director of Zorba the Greek) starring Irene Papas, and a British televised Bacchae featuring Terence Stamp and Edward Fox. As Aristotle famously stated, tragedy evokes pity and terror, but results in a catharsis or purgation of violent feelings. We’ll see how that works for these three by Euripides.



Recommended Reading: Euripides, Electra, Phoenician Women, Bacchae, Iphigenia at Aulis (trans. Cecilia Eaton Luschnig and Paul Woodruff), ISBN 978-1603844604. Any other translation or edition may be used. Online versions are available at

About the Instructor

George Young has a degree in English from Duke and holds a PhD in Slavic Languages and Literature from Yale. He has taught Russian, English, and General Humanities at Grinnell, Dartmouth, The University of New England, and, in recent years, at OLLI and MSC.


George Young



1:00-3:00 p.m.
6-week course begins Sept. 14



Class meets at Patten Free Library, 33 Summer St., Bath—Community Room