Faculty Advisor

Freeman, Sara

Area of Study

Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

Publication Date

Summer 2012


Considering the modern playwright Sarah Ruhl’s current body of work through the paradigm of ancient Greek theatrical tradition illuminates many links to Greek theatre and highlights the depth of the emotions within her plays. The ancient Greek playwrights Aeschylus, Sophocles, Euripides, and Aristophanes, along with Ruhl, confront themes of love and death with both sorrow and humor, considering the different ways people cope with traumatic circumstances. They focus in particular on the relationships that form between people after a significant loss, and how humans come together in a community, seeking connection with each other. By theatrically exploring the themes of grief, mourning, love, and death through dualities such as tragedy versus comedy, male versus female dynamics, and divinity versus humanity, Ruhl and the Greeks are able to compare aspects of the world and show the vital interrelationship that exists between what appear to be contrasts.


University of Puget Sound