Find out more about applying for the Rhodes Scholarship

Find out more about applying for the Rhodes Scholarship


Scholars' Library: A Conversation with Martin Revermann: 'Brecht & Tragedy'

Scholars' Library: A Conversation with Martin Revermann: 'Brecht & Tragedy'

26 May 2022

17:00 - 18:00 (GMT+01:00)

Online Platform


Join Martin Revermann (Germany & Corpus Christi 1994) for a conversation on his book 'Brecht and Tragedy'

We are pleased to invite you to take part in a conversation with Martin Revermann (Germany & Corpus Christi 1994), author of 'Brecht and Tragedy: Radicalism, Traditionalism, Eristics'

In dialogue with Scholar Vighnesh Hampapura (India & St John's 2021), amongst other topics Martin will discuss Brecht's complex relationship with Greek Tragedy and the tragic tradition, Brecht's role as a theatre artist and his continued relevance today, as well as Martin's writing journey.

Scholars may obtain a copy of Brecht and Tragedy here:

This wide-ranging, detailed and engaging study of Brecht's complex relationship with Greek tragedy and tragic tradition argues that this is fundamental for understanding his radicalism. Featuring an extensive discussion of The Antigone of Sophocles (1948) and further related works (the Antigone model book and the Small Organon for the Theatre), this monograph includes the first-ever publication of the complete set of colour photographs taken by Ruth Berlau. This is complemented by comparatist explorations of many of Brecht's own plays as his experiments with tragedy conceptualized as the 'big form'. The significance for Brecht of the Greek tragic tradition is positioned in relation to other formative influences on his work (Asian theatre, Naturalism, comedy, Schiller and Shakespeare). Brecht emerges as a theatre artist of enormous range and creativity, who has succeeded in re-shaping and re-energizing tragedy and has carved paths for its continued artistic and political relevance.

Vighnesh Hampapura (India & St John's 2021) is currently writing a thesis on the tragedy form in literatures from India. His English translation of Kannada writer Vasudhendra's short stories is forthcoming from Penguin Random House.

Martin Revermann (Germany & Corpus Christi 1994) is a Classicist and Theatre Studies scholar. His research interests are not confined to Graeco-Roman antiquity but cover the cultural history of theatre (both Western and Asian) more broadly and until the 21st century. Specific areas include performance criticism of Greek drama, the cultural history of Greek theatre from antiquity to the 21st century, the history and theory of translation, theatre iconography, theatre theory and theatre sociology. Another major focus of his research is the work of Bertolt Brecht, especially exploring Brecht’s position as a playwright, director and theorist within the history of theatre as a whole. He is also working on the history of theatre audiences and playgoing. His research (and graduate teaching) therefore integrates Classics, Theatre Studies, Comparative Literature, German Studies and History.

Revermann’s award-winning doctoral research was the foundation of Comic Business. Theatricality, Dramatic Technique and Performance Contexts of Aristophanic Comedy (Oxford 2006). He has edited or co-edited five other books: Performance, Iconography, Reception. Studies in Honour of Oliver Taplin (Oxford 2008), Beyond the Fifth Century: Interactions with Greek Tragedy from the Fourth Century BCE to the Middle Ages (Berlin/New York 2010), The Cambridge Companion to Greek Comedy (Cambridge 2014), A Cultural History of Theatre (Vol. 1: Antiquity) (London 2017) and Semiotics in Action (Brno 2020). His latest monograph is Brecht and Tragedy: Radicalism, Traditionalism, Eristics (Cambridge 2022).

Revermann was trained as a Classicist in Germany and the UK, and holds a doctorate from the University of Oxford (where was a Rhodes Scholar). He also held research fellowships at Oxford University (Merton College), at Harvard’s Center for Hellenic Studies, at the School of Advanced Study (University of London) and for (2022) at Cambridge University.


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This event is not open to the public but will be recorded for the benefit of those who are unable to attend.

Q & A:

Please feel free to submit any questions in advance to or you can use the chat function within Zoom to ask questions directly during the live event.