Literary and dramatic representations of tyranny abound since antiquity alongside critical distinctions between different forms of totalitarian and oppressive regimes. Yet, book-length studies on the topic of the tyrant’s fear are relatively few. The second part of this special issue (part 1: 51.4. 2017) includes seven articles which explore the tyrant’s fear as dramatized in the Oresteia and Macbeth through discussions of classical and early modern psychological, cultural and performative interdictions to say and show on stage the murder of the king (1 and 2); of affect and stage/audience liminality (3 and 4); and of the tyrant’s fear from the perspective of the dangers and fears of staging these two plays in contemporary tyrannical regimes, from Czechoslovakia to Francoist Spain to authoritarian Greece (5, 6, 7). How do these plays lend themselves to unflattering renderings of contemporary tyrannical regimes? Have they been ‘unmountable’ at particular moments in time or in certain cultural contexts where censorship was, and still is, strong? Along these lines, can different (possibly depoliticized) stagings communicate the themes and ideas of the plays in order not to offend the regime within which the performance is produced?
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