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The concept of 'Tragodie' in the work of Gerhart Hauptmann.

Sugden, John Brayshaw. (1973) The concept of 'Tragodie' in the work of Gerhart Hauptmann. Doctoral thesis, University of Surrey (United Kingdom)..

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Abstract

This thesis deals with Gerhart Hauptmann's eight. plays which the author himself entitled 'Tragodien'. It examines those characteristics which made Hauptmann call these plays. 'Tragodien' and thus arrives at a definition of his concept of 'Tragodie'. This concept is shown to, be largely inspired by Hauptmann's visit to Greece in 1907. In Greek mythology Hauptmann finds a figurative representation of reality, in which psychological and natural forces are interpreted as aspects of superior, metaphysical powers which determine man's existence. The perpetual conflict between Olympian and chthonic gods mirrors Hauptmann's own view of life as a continual battle between opposing forces of creation and destruction. 'Tragodie' demonstrates' the victory of the destructive forces. Hauptmann's 'Tragodien' show man's helplessness both directly, as destructive forces gain a hold over man's mind by driving him to act on blind impulses, and indirectly, as an atmosphere of menace is built up, in which man feels totally-disorientated, unable to distinguish between illusion and reality. No longer rationally master of his actions, man is driven to commit inhuman acts of cruelty and murder. The portrayal of such inhumanity as the result of superhuman intervention defies man's ability to explain it away rationally. The first four 'Tragodien' have nordic or Germanic settings but in the 'Atridentetralogie' Hauptmann achieves the full power of 'Tragodie' as he conceives it by returning to the Greek source of his inspiration. In this form 'Tragodie' portrays an irruption of the underworld powers of Hades into the light and the sacrifice of human life which this entails. Based on a concept of supernatural, destructive forces, inherent in creation, which threaten human existence, Hauptmann's 'Tragodien' are a remarkable attempt to revive genuine tragedy in an age of rational scepticism.

Item Type: Thesis (Doctoral)
Divisions : Theses
Authors :
NameEmailORCID
Sugden, John Brayshaw.
Date : 1973
Contributors :
ContributionNameEmailORCID
http://www.loc.gov/loc.terms/relators/THS
Additional Information : Thesis (M.Phil.)--University of Surrey (United Kingdom), 1973.
Depositing User : EPrints Services
Date Deposited : 22 Jun 2018 14:26
Last Modified : 06 Nov 2018 16:53
URI: http://epubs.surrey.ac.uk/id/eprint/848071

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