n Acta Classica : Proceedings of the Classical Association of South Africa - The Double Tongue as Hypertext of Euripides's Ion
|Article Title||The Double Tongue as Hypertext of Euripides's Ion|
|© Publisher:||Classical Association of South Africa (CASA)|
|Journal||Acta Classica : Proceedings of the Classical Association of South Africa|
|Publication Date||Jan 2008|
|Pages||125 - 144|
The title of William Golding's last novel, The Double Tongue (1995), alludes to the notorious ambiguity of the Delphic oracle; the novel explicitly draws on Euripides's tragicomedy Ion as hypotext. Not only is the eponymous character of Euripides's play clearly adapted by Golding, but Golding's narrator and main character, Arieka, can be regarded as a conflation of two Euripidean characters, Kreousa and the Priestess. In both works, Apollo plays a dominant role extra scaenam as divine manipulator of human action. In the Ion, he literally rapes Kreousa; in The Double Tongue, he metaphorically rapes Arieka by forcibly impregnating her with the seed of oracular truth. In this article, Genette's theory of hypertextualité is employed to help us understand the relationship between Euripides and Golding. After exploring Golding's strategies for contextualising an historical novel, I examine his adaptation of the Euripidean hypotext in terms of setting, plot, characterisation and theme.
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