The Myth of Medea was not fixed or static, and in this lecture Prof. Taplin will show how Euripides made crucial innovations in his tragedy of 431 BCE. Then by scrutinizing vase-paintings, especially one first published in 1984, and papyrus fragments, especially one first published in 2006, he will reveal how her story was repeatedly varied and re-evaluated during the next 100 years in response to the challenge set by that sensational dramatization.
Oliver Taplin is Emeritus Professor of Classics at Oxford University. His work has focused on the performance of drama and poetry in both ancient and modern times. His first book was The Stagecraft of Aeschylus (1977), and the most recent is Pots and Plays (2007). University of Chicago Press published his translation of Euripides’ Medea in 2013.