The logic of/in tragedy: Hanoch Levin's drama the torments of job

Freddie Rokem*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Hanoch Levin's 1981 The Torments of Job refigures the biblical story of Job as nihilistic and abject tragedy. This article examines tragedy, generally, and Levin's play, specifically, in the context of classical logical syllogism. The first half examines the interrelation of the Book of Job, Greek tragedy, and classical logic, giving an overview of Aristotle's construction of syllogisms. The second half looks at how tragedy can subvert logical structures, examining The Torments of Job's inversion of the universal-particular structure in its deployment of the particular case of Job's meaningless suffering, demonstrating how all humanity is susceptible to similar misery. The article concludes with the suggestion that tragedy's breakdown of logic is indicative of the human condition.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)521-539
Number of pages19
JournalModern Drama
Issue number4
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2013


  • Aristotle
  • Bible and drama
  • Hanoch Levin
  • Performance and philosophy
  • Syllogism
  • The Torments of Job
  • Tragedy


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