A Forum for and the Background of the Mediation of Dialogue in Ancient and Modern Academies

Monday, 19 October 2015

A Lecture by Yanis Varoufakis at the University of Coimbra (Democratising the Eurozone)

The work to which these ("lazy"?!) Greeks I referred to in a previous post, the ones with the unfathomable desire to learn and conduct dialogue, devote themselves is having great repercussions in Europe. I am very happy for this, as Greek, and, hopefully, as "Greek", if I ever deserve the latter title (see again some of the previous posts).

A wonderful lecture about both democracy and academies, given by our ex finance minister, Prof. Yanis Varoufakis, at the University of Coimbra, Portugal. No introduction nor comment needed:


Monday, 5 October 2015

Anne Carson, Ivo van Hove, Antigone and Kreon

ἰὼ δύστανος,
οὔτ' ἐν βροτοῖς οὔτε νεκροῖσιν
μέτοικος, οὐ ζῶσιν, οὐ θανοῦσιν.

Carson's translation: "I'm a strange new kind of in-between thing, aren't I, not at home with the dead nor with the living."
PS: The "in-between thing" does not translate any word in the Greek, but seems to reflect on metoikos, which meant, when used in the political context of ancient democratic Athens, someone who was between a full citizen and one with no rights at all, the latter being a slave or a visitor.

I adore the second Antigone translation by Carson, the Canadian poet and Professor of Classics. Kreon and Antigone have been equally taken care of, as characters. The former was not caricatured, as it may happen so easily. Binoche did not want to use a microphone and her way of not shouting did not appeal to all tastes, but I found myself so privileged to see her playing this role so close to me on the stage. I loved the actors' and actresses' slow articulation of the verses. How often don't we listen to actors rushing through the verses, instead, the verses that were once sung, with their lengths and breadths, as if they were reading aloud recipes! The cinematic elements were very thoughtfully integrated. If I had not experienced our great theatre lady Anna Sunodinou on Epidaurus' stage as Antigone, the BAM performance under van Hove's direction would have been my best Antigone so far.

Hats off and great respect for everyone involved in this production. This trip to NYC "payed off", to express myself in "our" language. We are indebted to Sophocles, and grateful to BAM for staging this performance. My friends adored it as well. Back in London, I am enjoying the fall term (things are in full swing), looking forward to the next NYC visit, this time for a conference.