In my edition of Sophocles’ Ajax the discussion of ‘politics’ in the introduction is only a couple of paragraphs long. 1 The invitation to contribute to this volume gives me a chance to say slightly more about this topic, as well as briefly to consider an important paper that appeared after
Sophocles’ Ajax is an exemplary text with which to explore the practicability of theatrical empathy to develop humility in both ancient and contemporary audiences. Given the play’s functional usage as a remedial and therapeutic tool to elicit emotional connection, this paper analyzes an
ἀνδρῶν to mindless savagery; and key moments of the Trojan War itself are not enacted, as in epic, but only recalled (and distorted) in the verbal duel between Ajax and Ulysses over the hero’s arms. Ovid’s reworking becomes a mock-heroic ‘ Iliad lite’. In all this there is a sustained poetological
MISCELLANEA SOPHOCLES, AJAX 430 ff. In Sophocles' play, Ajax' realization of his humiliation leads him to derive his name from the lament aid (430-33)1): The Greeks' fondness for etymologizing is well known3). The commen- tators on this passage list many parallels for the Greek habit of finding
SOPHOCLES, AJAX 192-200 BY J. F. DAVIDSON At the end of the parodos the chorus of Salaminian sailors, greatly agitated by the report that Ajax is responsible for the attack on the army's sheep and cattle, call upon their leader to come out of his tent and resolve their doubts and fears (192
coincidence of rhetorical and dramatic interest; one which Sophokles already recognized and employed.
9) Garvie 1998 , ad loc.
10) Jebb 1883-96, ad loc.: “The words seem also to glance at the alleged disloyalty of Ajax” [italics mine].
11) Contra Winnington-Ingram 1980 , 69, who remarks, “It is
MISCELLANEA SOPHOCLES, AJAX 148-50 In agreement with the great majority of recent editors, R. D. Dawe adopts the reading 1t&cnv '08uaaeus (149) for the Teubner text in preference to 1tCxV'twv '08vaaEVS (the reading of L) which requires Nauck's correction '08uoeu<; for metrical reasons. This