Aristophanes Sighting in Michael Stipe’s “10 Favorite Books List”

Four Plays by Aristophanes William Arrowsmith 41CrJyLASYL._SX326_BO1,204,203,200_In graduate school, we translated the knotty Greek of Aristophanes and guffawed at the ancient jokes. The chorus of frogs is hilarious in The Frogs as they croak their Greek frog sound:  “Brekekekex koax koax.”

In this day and age they probably dare not teach Aristophanes without issuing “trigger alerts.”

Michael Stipe 14bookshelf-2-master180And so I was thrilled by a recent sighting of Aristophanes in The New York Times T Magazine. Michael Stipe, the singer for R.E.M., my favorite broken-up rock band, shared his “Top 10 Favorite Books.”

One of them is Four Plays by Aristophanes, translated by William Arrowsmith.  (It includes The Birds, The Clouds, The Frogs, and Lysistrata.)

Stipe says, “I love the bawdiness and audacity of both writer and translator.”

The book will be in stock at Amazon on Sept. 2, so I can only suppose there was a rush after the article was published.

Congrats to Stipe for making Aristophanes a best-seller, or if not a best-seller, a good seller!

Below is a photo of of Nathan Lane and the chorus of frogs in The Frogs,  a musical adaptation of Aristophanes’ play by Stephen Sondheim and Burt Shevelove.

The Frogs Lincoln Center Theater July 16, 2004 Credit Photo ©Paul Kolnik NYC 212.362.7778

The Frogs
Lincoln Center Theater
July 16, 2004

4 thoughts on “Aristophanes Sighting in Michael Stipe’s “10 Favorite Books List”

    • I have to laugh, because I generally flunk my husband’s rock and roll quizzes, which are given at frequent intervals when we’re riding in the car. I’ve been listening to R.E.M. for years, and Stipe is the singer. Great songs, great lyrics. He does have excellent taste in lit!

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