The Open UniversitySkip to content

‘Possessing an unbridled tongue’: frank speech and speaking back in Euripides’ Orestes

Barker, Elton (2011). ‘Possessing an unbridled tongue’: frank speech and speaking back in Euripides’ Orestes. In: Carter, David ed. Why Athens? A Reappraisal of Tragic Politics. Oxford: Oxford University Press, pp. 145–162.

DOI (Digital Object Identifier) Link:
Google Scholar: Look up in Google Scholar


This chapter reassesses how tragedy is political: rather than focussing only on tragedy’s subject matter and the extent of its political or democratic referentiality, it draws attention to the language and form used, and the process through which an audience are invited to go by virtue of a play’s discourse and structure. Taking Euripides's Orestes as a case study, it examines instances of frank speech in conjuncture with the play’s formal structure in order to bring out Euripides’ thematisation of dissent and assess the repercussions that follow for thinking about tragedy’s politics more generally.

Item Type: Book Section
Copyright Holders: 2011 Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0-19-956232-6, 978-0-19-956232-9
Keywords: Euripides; Orestes; tragedy; politics; Athens; free speech; parrhēsia; dissent; debate; assembly; agon; discourse
Academic Unit/School: Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS) > Arts and Cultures
Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences (FASS)
Item ID: 29851
Depositing User: Elton Barker
Date Deposited: 20 Oct 2011 14:52
Last Modified: 30 Jan 2017 14:27
Share this page:


Altmetrics from Altmetric

Citations from Dimensions

Actions (login may be required)

Policies | Disclaimer

© The Open University   contact the OU