Terracotta squat lekythos (oil flask) depicting Philoktetes on Lemnos (detail), 420 B.C., Greek, Attic. Terracotta. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. Creative Commons CCO 1.0

Sophocles's Philoctetes—From Wounding to Healing



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What can Sophocles’s play Philoctetes teach us about how we treat the vulnerable and wounded, and how we respond to being wounded ourselves? Philosophy expert Marina McCoy of Boston College explores this Greek tragedy and its themes of friendship, betrayal, and healing. McCoy considers the value of its live performance as a communal experience, inviting us to examine how we care for those at the margins of society and what it means to move beyond injustice and toward community. Complements the Getty Villa theater production The Heal.

Marina McCoy is an associate professor of philosophy at Boston College and a specialist in ancient Greek philosophy. Her work includes topics in rhetoric, vulnerability, trauma, and Greek literature and philosophy. She is the author of the book Wounded Heroes: Vulnerability as a Virtue in Ancient Greek Literature and Philosophy (Oxford, 2013) and is the author of a forthcoming book called Image and Argument in Plato's Republic (SUNY, 2020).

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