Miss Julie

Miss Julie and the Nietzchean Model

In The Birth of Tragedy, Nietzche discusses at length the duality inherent in the development of art. This duality is caused by two opposing principles termed Apollinian and Dionysian. These two principles are employed in August Strindberg's Miss Julie through the main character of Miss Julie.

Societal class is a major theme of the play and its relation to the Apollinian and Dionysian duality is apparent when observing Miss Julie. Throughout the play, Miss Julie is caught between staying within her class and breaking from it. This is her struggle between Apollinian reason and Dionysian want, respectively. The whole idea of class is Apollinian - based on rationality and division of individuals - while the idea of no class system is Dionysian - based on community. Miss Julie goes back and forth between these two ideas constantly, and her inner struggle can clearly be seen through the symbolism apparent in her recurring dream: "I've climbed to the top of a pillar, and am sitting there, and I can see no way to descend. When I look down, I become dizzy, but I must come down- but I haven't the courage to jump. I can't stay up there, and I long to fall, but I don't fall" (Strindberg 127). She is obviously...

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