Middlebury
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ITAL6617

Mediterrean Identity in Arts

Mediterranean Identity through Literature-Cinema-Poetry-Theater

A fundamental approach to the exploration of the Mediterranean self/identity is to examine those figures that are different from the narrative self - among which the female figure is one of the most important and universal representations of otherness. One such multi-faceted character is Medea, arguably the most captivating female figure of all times who, since the dawn of Western literature, has inspired many artists in all fields. Euripides, Seneca, Corneille, Anouilh, Pasolini, Callas, Fo and Rame, NDiaye, Ba, are among the many who have breathed life into Medea’s various incarnations, on the stage and in cinematic productions, from ancient Greek drama to the present day. Unlike most mythic figures, whose defining attributes remain constant across the various versions of the myth, the essence of Medea is continually changing as her story is rethought by the various authors and new versions are created. The Medea myth often supplies the vocabulary for expressing modern political concern, such as the tensions within a mixed marriage in contemporary society. She illuminates the opposing concepts of self and other, and also suggests the disturbing possibility of otherness within the self. We shall investigate the figure of Medea in XX-century theater and film in the Mediterranean area, reconstructing its ancient meaning in literary tradition, as well as the philosophical, psychological, and cultural questions these portrayals give rise to.

(Besides regular credit this course may also count for one credit in the M.A. in Mediterranean Studies program)
Subject:
Italian
Department:
Italian
Division:
Language School
Requirements Fulfilled:
Civ Cul & Soc

Sections

Summer 2009

ITAL6617A-L09 Lecture (Santucci)