The aged body in fifth- and fourth- century Greek literature
Hobe, Sara Elizabeth
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This thesis explores how old age, the elderly body and the relationship of elderly persons to their bodies is understood and represented in ancient Greek drama and Greek medical writing. In my first chapter, in which I focus on the portrayal of elderly characters in Greek drama, I investigate how the playwrights represent old age as a disintegration of the physical and non-physical elements of a person. I discuss the physical features of senescence and the experience older people have with disease in my second chapter which deals with old age in medical writing. In my third and final chapter I synthesize these representations to form a portrait of the imagined aged body as well as comment upon how Greek writers found in this liminal time of life a locus from which to explore the divisibility of a person.