The rebel as tragic hero : a study of The plague by Albert Camus [and] Death of a salesman by Arthur Miller

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Betsy Greenleaf Culbertson (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site:
Ruth Hege

Abstract: One of the most riddling of all literary genres is that which is called tragedy. The term "tragedy" has been used to describe all sorts of serious literature, of varying degrees of excellence, throughout the artistic history of Western man. However, to the ancient Greeks, who invented the genre, tragedy had distinct and highly refined characteristics of composition. It was a particular art after a recognizable pattern. The pattern of tragedy was analyzed by Aristotle in his Poetics, in which the Greek philosopher based his discussion on the works of the three masters of Greek tragedy, Aeschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides. The essential principles of the Aristotelian definition, crucial of a development of any understanding of the art of tragedy, are adequately summarized by a modern tragic theorist, Oscar Mandel, in his A Definition of Tragedy: "Tragedy, then, is an imitation of an action which is serious, complete, and of a certain magnitude, concerning the fall of a man whose character is good, appropriate, believable, and consistent, whose misfortune is brought about not by vice or depravity, but by some error or frailty; in language embellished with each kind of artistic ornament, the several kinds being found in separate parts of the play, with incidents arousing pity and fear wherewith to accomplish the catharsis of these emotions."1

Additional Information

Honors Project
Language: English
Date: 1968

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