The Iphigenia Plays

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ISBN 978-0-8101-3724-0

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Publication Date
June 2018
Page Count
184 pages
Trim Size
5 x 8

The Iphigenia Plays

New Verse Translations
Euripides, translated by Rachel Hadas

At the heart of Iphigenia’s enduring story are an ambitious, opportunistic, and indecisive leader and the daughter whose life he is willing to sacrifice. In The Iphigenia Plays, poet Rachel Hadas offers a new generation of readers a graceful, clear, and powerful translation of Euripides’s two spellbinding (and very different) plays drawn from this legend: Iphigenia in Aulis and Iphigenia among the Taurians.

?Even for readers unfamiliar with Greek mythology or drama, these plays are suspenseful, poignant, and haunting. Euripides’s ability to evoke emotion and raise difficult questions has long engaged viewers and readers alike. Taken together, the two plays illuminate timeless human conflicts, showcasing individuals and families ensnared by the fury of war, of politics, of religion, and of ambition. Euripidean characters are always second-guessing themselves; now new readers can also ponder their dilemmas.

Poet and translator Rachel Hadas highlights the lyricism, emotion, and sheer humanity of Euripides’s plays. Mordant humor is here; so are heartbreak and tenderness. Hadas offers an Iphigenia story that resonates with our own troubled times and demonstrates anew the genius of one of the world’s supreme dramatists.
About the Author

EURIPIDES (c. 484–406 B.C.E.) was, along with Aeschylus and Sophocles, one of the great tragic dramatists of ancient Greece.
RACHEL HADAS, professor of English at Rutgers University–Newark, is the author of many books of poetry, essays, and translations, including Questions in the Vestibule (Northwestern, 2016) and Strange Relation: A Memoir of Marriage, Dementia, and Poetry. She is the editor (with Peter Constantine, Edmund Keeley, and Karen Van Dyck) of the anthology The Greek Poets: Homer to the Present.

“Rachel Hadas’s new translation of the Iphigenia plays carves out its own space among recent translations of Euripides. None of them are quite so vivid, so contemporary, or (above all) so full of poetic interest. For those serious readers of poetry, Hadas’s translation will also stand out as constantly intriguing, inventive, and various.”—John Talbot, author of Rough Translation: Poems

"How fortunate are we to have both of Euripides’ plays about Iphigenia together in one volume, in fluent and lively verse translations, eminently readable and playable, an equal joy for readers and actors alike. Rachel Hadas has accomplished this as only a poet with a deep knowledge of the classical tradition and an impeccable technique could have done." Charles Martin, translator of The Poems of Catullus and Ovid's Metamorphoses