The increase in the number of performances based on material from ancient Greek tragedy on contemporary stages all over the world is very apparent. The relevance of these performances has resulted in a lively discourse that exceeds the field of Theatre Studies and seems to have intensified since the turn of the millennium. What are the reasons for this heightened interest in ancient Greek tragedy and in the tragedy Antigone in particular?
The current socio-political challenges have amplified the threat of the withdrawal into isolationist politics. Recent political developments point out the reality of the ethical dimensions of tragedy, and the urgency to critically investigate the structures that underlie tragic conflict. Theatrical and philosophical reflection is today – more than ever – a potential means of effective and affective negotiation, with tragedy being one of their crucial meetingpoints.
Focusing on the particular example of Antigone this analysis accounts for recent developments in contemporary theatre’s treatment of tragedy, paying special attention to its philosophical implications and the political potential of its aesthetic developments.