Lecture 11: Hegel on Tragedy
"Taking Antigone as his paradigm, Hegel views great tragedy as the articulation and resolution of ethical dilemmas. I look at the elements of this theory: 'ethical substance,' the tragic conflict, the tragic flaw, and the tragic 'resolution.' And then I defend the theory against a number of criticisms: that in ignoring 'catharsis' the theory is excessively intellectual, that it ignores the central role of fate in Greek tragedy, that in proposing a 'resolution' it misses the essence of the 'tragic vision,' and that there must be something wrong with a theory that denies tragic greatness to Shakespeare."
Julian Young is the Kenan Professor of Humanities at Wake Forest University. He is the author of ten books, mostly on nineteenth- and twentieth-century German philosophy, as well as The Death of God and the Meaning of Life. His most recent work is Friedrich Nietzsche: a Philosophical Biography. He has appeared on radio and television in Ireland, New Zealand and the USA, and has written for the Guardian, the New York Times and Harper's Magazine. He is currently completing The Philosophy of Richard Wagner, and plans a book on tragedy.