Monday, August 9, 2021

The Silent Treatment

"Oedipus at Colonus"by Fulchran-Jean Harriet

Plays like Sophocles’ Oedipus at ColonusKing Lear and Hamlet deal with aftermath of tragedy. “The rest is silence” are Hamlet’s parting words. Job is a representation of how one continues to live in the face of every imaginable adversity. Oedipus is blinded. Lear is the left wandering in the company of the Fool. The question of perseverance itself becomes the issue. Why live when everything is taken away? Some people continue for their children, if they have them, for fear that suicide and other desperate behaviors become a form of psychic baggage that future generations will be burdened with. Repression is a form of preservation. Traumatic memories can be even more invidious, it they escape the purview of consciousness. They rot the roots like fungal diseases which destroy trees. Very few individuals emerge from life unscathed. In fact birth itself is one of  the most painful life passages that humans endure. You might look at the hubris (pride)and hamartia (flaw) of classical Greek tragedy as the equivalent of a multiple car pileup. The aftermath is a state of shock which preserves the victims while scarring them for the rest of their lives.

Read "Headbutt" by Francis Levy, HuffPost

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