n Acta Classica : Proceedings of the Classical Association of South Africa - as Hypertext of Euripides's

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The title of William Golding's last novel, (1995), alludes to the notorious ambiguity of the Delphic oracle; the novel explicitly draws on Euripides's tragicomedy as . 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 as divine manipulator of human action. In the , he literally rapes Kreousa; in , he metaphorically rapes Arieka by forcibly impregnating her with the seed of oracular truth. In this article, Genette's theory of 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 in terms of setting, plot, characterisation and theme.


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