ABSTRACT

This chapter delves into more recent works of tragedy, assessing the reading of Shakespeare's tragedies as part of the “invention of the human” prevalent in literary theory. Taking this to mean that the tragic heroes of Shakespeare are the bedrock of the modern, psychological individual, the chapter goes onto explore this claim with great scrutiny, recontextualizing it in terms of religious ideas of “self-fashioning,” analyzing more contemporary tragic works such as those of Henrik Ibsen and Arthur Miller, with a focus on the social nature of those works.