Nda and Akpan
Greener Journal of Art and Humanities Vol. 1 (1), pp. 011-020, December 2011
Sophocles and Shakespeare: A Comparative Study of Classical and Elizabethan Tragedies
Ubong Nda and Margaret Akpan
Department of Theatre Arts, University Of Uyo, Nigeria.
The dramatic arts, has through the years, produced notable practitioners in the various ages. A great many of these practitioners have creatively churned out works that have not only highlighted the peculiarities of their periods of dramatic history, but have also outlined the time confines of their ages, and the relevance of their works have defied geographical boundaries. Such works continue to have profound influence even on the 21st century socio-political and economic scenes, and are subjects of discourses to this day. Two of such practitioners have been Sophocles, (496 – 406 B.C.), whose works, constitute an epitome of the classical tradition, and William Shakespeare (1564 – 1616), a veritable exponent of Elizabethan drama, and ‘probably the greatest dramatist of all’. (Brocket: 1978:164) This essay is a comparative study of the works of Sophocles and tragic classism as well as Shakespeare and Elizabethan tragedy, with illustration principally from Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex and Oedipus at Colonus, and Shakespeare’s Julius Caesar and Macbeth.
Keywords: Sophocles, Shakespeare, Classical Tradition, Elizabethan Drama
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