Stories are often morality tales.
After watching a movie, people sometimes wonder, “What was the point of that?” What they are asking is what lesson or deeper meaning is to be derived. Or sometimes people straightforwardly ask, “What’s the moral of the story?”
Stories today often have lessons like “follow your heart,” or “you’re fine just the way you are” or “be more open-minded,” or “old ways of doing things are bad and new ways are good.”
Last weekend I saw “Phaedra” at the National Theatre in London. It is billed as a new play “after Euripides, Seneca, and Racine.” It is a retelling of a Greek myth set in modern times. Like other renowned Greek myths, there are incestuous themes.
The moral of “Phaedra” is that the incendiary flame of transgressive sexual desire can cause limitless damage not only to individuals but to an entire family and community. This is why, among the ones set in modern times, “Phaedra” is the most right-wing play I’ve ever seen.