A CRITICAL, PORTUGUESE/ENGLISH EDITION OF ANFITRIÃO, OU JÚPITER E ALCMENA / AMPHITRYON, or JUPITER AND ALCMENA :
By the Eighteenth-Century Portuguese Jewish Writer Antônio José da Silva
|Author: ||Silva, José da Antônio|
This translation of Anfitrião, ou Júpiter e Alcmena by Antônio José da Silva makes this remarkable play on the exploits of Jupiter and the conception of Hercules available in English for the first time. The play is of considerable interest in literary history as part of a long tradition of stage works on the Amphitryon theme.
“ . . . A rich and profound contribution to Western letters
and world literature in general. . . With the Portuguese original long since being out of print and with so few
individuals outside of the Lusophone world being
familiar with the writer, this book represents a significant contribution towards greater international recognition of an unquestionably noteworthy author. Krummrich’s
scholarship encourages a wealth of interpretations and critical study.”
-Prof. Emmanuel Harris
University of North Carolina
This first time translation is of considerable interest in literary history as part of a long tradition of stage works on the Amphitryon theme. Since Greek times, although the earliest surviving play on the subject is Roman, dramatists have exploited the comic
potential of the myth of the engendering of
Hercules; Amphitryon confronts Jupiter, who
has disguised himself as Amphitryon in order to beget Hercules on Amphitryon’s wife, and much mistaken-identity slapstick ensues. Silva was one of the last victims of the Inquisition in Portugal; although his play is as funny as any ever written on this theme, his treatment incorporates subtle protests against arbitrary imprisonment and unfair trials, no doubt in reference to his own experiences with the Inquisition. This work will appeal to students of theater history and Jewish Studies, among others.