Le cyclope d’Euripide : l'antre, le ventre et la vente


fr Anthropozoologica 33-34 - Pages 41-46

Published on 01 March 2002

This article is a part of the thematic issue Animal et animalité dans l’Antiquité. Actes du colloque de l’Université Lumière-Lyon II, 24-25 septembre 1998

Animality and humanity in Euripides' Cyclops: the cave, the belly and the sale

The whole play is built on tension between animality and humanity, between nature and culture: this tension appears in the characters (Polyphem is a wild beast; Odysseus is the man of artifice; satyrs are halfway between human beings and animals) and in the stage, divided into two rival spaces (the cave, place of barbarism and metaphor of Cyclops' belly comes in opposition with the outside, place of civilization). So, in the whole play, Polyphem wants Odysseus to pass from human to animal status (in reducing him to a prey) and Odysseus wants Polyphem to pass from animal to human status (especially through the sale).


Cave, animality, theatrical space, nature, savagery.

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