Euripides' Medea: The Stranger in the House


In lieu of an abstract, the first paragraph of the essay follows:

In his 1978 film A Dream of Passion, the director Jules Dessin revisits the tragedy of Medea. The film juxtaposes and contrasts theater and cinema, ancient and modem, Greek and American, in its exploration of an extended encounter between the characters played by Melina Mercouri-a Greek actress performing Euripides' Medea in Athens-and Ellen Burstyn-an American corporate wife and fundamentalist Christian, imprisoned for having murdered her children, because her husband was having an affair with a Greek woman.1 What remains constant, in the confrontation of the ancient and the contemporary narratives, is the horror of-and fascination with-a woman who would murder her own children.2 And, further, who would do so out of marital jealousy.

Comparative Drama is carried by JSTOR and Project MUSE.