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Ancient Greek Women in Film$
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Konstantinos P. Nikoloutsos

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780199678921

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: January 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199678921.001.0001

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Mythic Women in Tony Harrison’s Prometheus

Mythic Women in Tony Harrison’s Prometheus

(p.234) (p.235) 10 Mythic Women in Tony Harrison’s Prometheus
Ancient Greek Women in Film

Hallie Rebecca Marshall

Oxford University Press

This chapter discusses the depiction and narrative function of female characters in Tony Harrison's film/poem Prometheus, which uses the Aeschylean Prometheus Bound as its primary literary model. The socio-historical framework of the 1984 strike by the National Union of Mineworkers is outlined, alongside the pervasive issues of social decay experienced within mining communities impacted by industrial contraction. The chapter places the female characters within this context, exploring the ways in which their depiction is representative of the traditional role of women in working class communities, and how Harrison uses them, even as largely silent characters, to depict the destruction of community and familial structures. It is argued that while the miners' strike has been an almost exclusively discussed in the public realm in terms of its male participants, Harrison insists on also depicting the private female suffering caused by the mine closures.

Keywords:   Tony Harrison, Prometheus, Prometheus Bound, Io, Nereids, National Union of Mineworkers, strike, coal miner, coal mine closures

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