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The fragmented text: The classics and postwar European literature

  • Theodore Ziolkowski
Article

Abstract

The presence of the classical tradition, prevalent in European literature down to the twentieth century, is still evident in the postwar period. But here it occurs in a radically fragmented form reflecting the shattering of values in the contemporary world. The fragmentation of familiar texts reveals itself in parodies and travesties of theOdyssey and theAeneid as well as such dramas as theOresteia orAntigone. The lives of Virgil and Ovid have been adapted to reflect the problematics of postmodern writers. Andeven the elegiac distich has been distorted by postwar poets to suggest formally the fragmentation of an enduring tradition.

Keywords

Classical Tradition Classical Antiquity European Literature Greek Tragedy Paradise Lost 
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Copyright information

© Springer 2000

Authors and Affiliations

  • Theodore Ziolkowski
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Germanic Languages and Literatures, 230 East Pyne BuildingPrinceton UniversityPrincetonUSA

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