Euripides' Heracles is an extraordinary play of great complexity, exploring the co-existence of both positive and negative aspects of the eponymous hero. Euripides treats Heracles' ambivalence by showing his uncertain position after the completion of his labours and turns him into a tragic hero by dramatizing his development from the invincible hero of the labours to the courageous bearer of suffering. This book offers a comprehensive reading of Heracles examining it in the contexts of Euripidean dramaturgy, Greek drama and fifth-century Athenian society. It shows that the play, which raises profound questions on divinity and human values, deserves to have a prominent place in every discussion about Euripides and about Greek tragedy. Tracing some of Euripides' most spectacular writing in terms of emotional and intellectual effect, and discussing questions of narrative, rhetoric, stagecraft and audience reception, this work is required reading for all students and scholars of Euripides.

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