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The Power of Pride in Oedipus Rex and Antigone


What occurs when pride takes control of a human? In the plays Oedipus Rex and also Antigone, Sophocles paints a disappointing image of what takes place, where pride is illustrated as both a blockage to sight as well as an obstruction to hearing. According to Sophocles, the pride of Antigone, Creon, as well as Oedipus blinds them from seeing their very own stubborn determination as well as deafens them from hearing the sensible advise of their advisors. These characters’ pride produces heartbreaking consequences not only for the egotistic characters themselves, yet also for those closest to them. Sophocles utilizes the proud resolution of Antigone, Creon, and also Oedipus to highlight just how neglecting wise counsel results in fatal errors in reasoning.

Initially, Antigone’s pride takes the type of a stubborn need to act on her own will. In the opening act of the play, Antigone, in her conceited perseverance to get her method, does not listen to the advise of her sibling. This launches a chain of events that results in her demise. Insightfully recognizing Antigone’s intense decision, her sister states “You have a hot mind over cool points” (Ant. 88) and cautions her versus the threats of acting versus their powerful uncle Creon, who has actually commanded that nobody can bury Polyneices, Antigone’s brother. However, Antigone is dealt with to hide her bro, in spite of her sibling’s cautions about the risk of such reckless actions. Antigone can not allow the matter rest, for in her eyes, she needs to secure the honor of Polyneices and also her own satisfaction by burying her brother. Though Ismene talks smartly, Antigone’s arrogant decision to hide Polyneices deafens her from hearing the knowledge of Ismene. Therefore, she wrongfully attributes Ismene’s cautioning to simple frightened excuses. Ismene, seeing the futility of her counsel, relents, leaving Antigone with a caution: “go, considering that you intend to. But understand this: you go senseless without a doubt” (Ant. 98-99). Via her relentless resolution to have her very own means, Antigone can not see the folly of her actions and the repercussions for defying Creon. Though some might say that Antigone was appropriate to bury her brother, there is no question that Antigone would gain from proceeding in a more honorable style instead of coldly disobeying Creon’s mandates. Certainly, it was even more of Antigone’s misplaced persistent satisfaction, instead of real honor, in action when she hides her sibling a 2nd time, even though she satisfied the interment rituals when she buried her bro the very first time. As expected, Creon does conjure up a fatal penalty on Antigone. If she had paid attention to Ismene’s cautions against mistakenly acting rather than coldly acting versus Creon’s decree, probably Antigone’s tale would not have such a terrible end. Had she allowed Ismene’s cautions to pierce her stubborn satisfaction, her mistakes in reasoning can have been fixed by allowing Ismene to reveal her that it was not honor at the workplace in her activities, yet rather a proud, stubborn mindset.

Moreover, though Creon was the one to invoke penalty on Antigone, he likewise ensured his very own death in his condescending perspective towards advise. Unlike Antigone’s pride, his satisfaction takes the form of sexism, which allows him to cross out his child Haemon’s advice as silly love for a female. In a testimony to his very own maturity and love for his papa’s well being, Haemon reveals to Creon that he has actually been maintaining “watch on all men’s doing where it touches you,” (Ant. 687-689). He questions his dad’s program of punishment for Antigone out of this worry, as he discovers that “the whole town is grieving for this lady, unjustly doomed” (Ant. 693-694). Moreover, he recommends that his dad sags his company position versus Antigone, for, as Haemon states, “a guy, though wise, ought to never repent of discovering more, and should not be also inflexible” (Ant. 710-711). Also the carolers leader keeps in mind the wisdom of Haemon’s words, concurring that Creon would be prudent to hearken his child (Ant. 724-725). Sadly, all the sensibility of Haemon’s words is lost on Creon, who can not look previous his own prideful sexism. Rather than pertaining to Haemon’s words, which are so undoubtedly reasonable to the chorus leader as well as also the city as a whole, he excuses Haemon’s beliefs as simply his sensation towards Antigone doing the talking. Antigone intimidates Creon’s manly pride, and also he is focused on the fact that a lady presumed to disobey him. He puts out this temper, which has misogynistic undertones, on Haemon, calling him “weak than a lady” (Ant. 746) as well as a “female’s servant” (Ant. 756). Creon’s chauvinistic satisfaction dawns in the means he distributes penalty. He does not punish a male guard, who becomes part of a team incriminated for stopping working twice to monitor the body of Polyneices. Nonetheless, when a women dares to cross his path, he penalizes her with the utmost kind of punishment: fatality. Though Antigone’s crime is arguably extra deliberate, the massive difference in Creon’s management of justice to those that have actually failed him factors towards his sexist attitude. Creon’s termination of Haemon’s counsel inevitably brings about the death of Haemon and also Creon’s spouse, Eurydice. Had Creon paid attention to the sensible counsel of Haemon, he would not have experienced the catastrophe of both his other half and also his child dying. For if Creon had actually looked past his misogynistic thinking for disregarding Haemon’s words he could prevent his errors in judgement in penalizing Antigone.

Similar to Antigone as well as Creon, Oedipus’ tenacious resolution to act as he pleases keeps him from hearing the cautions of his counselors. Oedipus’ pride materializes itself in his idea that he is invincible versus the fate established before him by the gods. As Oedipus searches to discover the killer of Laius, he inches closer and more detailed to the tragic reality that he is, in fact, Laius’ killer. When he questions the wise Teiresias, the prophet shrewdly suggests Oedipus to not look for the truth, for it will only bring pain. He says, “Let me go residence. It will be easiest for us both to birth our numerous fates to the end if you will follow my recommendations” (OT. 320-322). Nonetheless, Oedipus declines to let him go, stating “you would certainly burglarize us of this your present of revelation?” (OT. 323). Moreover, Teiresias is not the only one to advise Oedipus that he is headed down a dark and also hazardous path. Oedipus’ prideful tenacity exposes itself a lot more so as Jocasta offers her advice, which Oedipus, unsurprisingly, does not heed. Jocasta identifies that this search will only bring about more suffering, and she entreats Oedipus, “do not hunt this out” (OT. 1060). Oedipus brushes her off, firmly insisting that he has to find the fact, despite that fact that she remains to ask him to finish this search. Jocasta declares that “it is since I desire you well that I offer you this advice- and also it’s the very best advise” (OT. 1066). Nevertheless, Oedipus grows annoyed with Jocasta, stating her advice “irritates” him, and also he proceeds in his pursuit of the fact (OT. 1067).

Oedipus’ proud perseverance comes from the evidence that Oedipus thinks, at least on a subconscious level, that he is more than the gods. For prior to he was king of Thebes, Oedipus left who he thought were his parents, King Polybus as well as Queen Merope, so as to get away the revelation that he would kill his daddy and marry his mother. It’s as if he believed that he could, by his very own power, alter the path the gods had established prior to him. Throughout his look for Laius’ killer, he continually overlooks the warnings of Teiresias and Jocasta, denying that he could be the murderer because he, in all his toughness, clearly escaped the fate of the gods. This prideful idea in his own sovereignty over fate leads to his errors in judgement regarding the identification of Laius’ murderer. However, Teiresias and also Jocasta’s cautions come true, as well as Oedipus recognizes he is, regrettably, the killer of Laius. When he locates this, Oedipus weeps in misery and sorrow, “insanity as well as stabbing discomfort and also memory of my wickedness!”(OT. 1316). His sensible counselors translucented his proud belief in his very own power against destiny, as well as visualized where his investigation would certainly lead. Had he listened to the knowledge of his counsel, possibly he would certainly have remained to reside in the brainless bliss that he contended the start of his reign and also marriage to Jocasta.

Despite the fact that Antigone, Creon, as well as Oedipus’ satisfaction takes various kinds, they all make errors in judgment. As Sophocles implies, these errors could be remedied by heeding the advise of their less hot-headed counterparts. Their counselors had the ability to translucent the conceited determination and also self-blindness which displays itself in Antigone with stubbornness, Creon through sexism, and Oedipus via idea in his toughness versus fate, and can therefore provide valuable support from a less mentally billed area. Sophocles provides knowledge on this through the voice of Haemon, saying, “Have you not seen the trees beside tornado gushes– The ones that flex protect their arm or legs and also leaves, while the resistant perish origin and branch?” (Ant. 712-714). Through this, Sophocles suggests that those who utilize the wisdom of others and enable themselves to compromise as well as alter based upon wise advice will make it through, while those that remain fixated on their undaunted wish to do things their very own method will die. Hence, Antigone, Creon, as well as Oedipus’ proud determination blinds and deafens them from recognizing their own limitations in their capacity to make crucial decisions.

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