Tragedy: A Short Introduction reinvigorates the genre for readers who are eager to embrace it, but who often find the traditional masterpieces too distant from their own language and world. Argues that todays most popular television shows and films thrive on the type of violence, passion, madness, and catastrophe first introduced to the stage in fifth century Athens Offers selected case studies that exemplify the compelling qualities of tragedy Reviews the history of tragic performance and the qualities of the classic tragic hero, and clarifies the role of plot in defining traged Analyzes the difference between a tragedy, a catastrophe, and a mere unhappy ending Explores the past and future of the tragic form

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