Along with Aristotle’s concept, the character Oedipus can be further defined as having “a weakness the Greeks called hubris – extreme pride, leading to overconfidence.” (Kennedy and Giola 857) Oedipus exhibits this personality flaw of hubris throughout the play, and it is the hubris tied with arrogance that causes of his tragic fall from nobility. Aristotle’s concept of a tragic hero and the Greeks definition of hubris are essential for a more than superficial understanding of the... ... middle of paper ... ... Works Cited Hogan, James C. A Commentary On The Plays Of Sophocles. Southern Illinois University Press, 1991. eBook Collection (EBSCOhost). Web. 31 Mar.
For example in Oedipus Rex Oedipus’s flaw is that he is quick to anger. When you examine Joseph Campbell’s hero’s journey and interesting question emerges. Can a tragic hero fit into the structure of the monomyth? The answer to this question is yes, a hero who would have been defined as tragic by the Greeks can fit into the monomyth developed by Joseph Campbell. We can see how this is possible by using the ancient Greek drama Oedipus Rex.
Aristotle also enlightens certain characteristics that determine a tragic hero. Using Oedipus as an ideal model, Aristotle says that a tragic hero must be an important or influential man who commits an error in judgment, and who must then suffer the consequences of his actions. The tragic hero must learn a lesson from his errors in judgment, his tragic flaw, and become an example to the audience of what happens when great men fall from their arrogant social or political positions. According to Aristotle, a tragedy must be an imitation of life in the form of a serious story that is complete in it; in other words, the story must be realistic and narrow in focus. A good tragedy will evoke pity and fear in its viewers, causing the viewers to experience a feeling of catharsis.
Aristotle once said that a Greek Tragedy must include an important person that has a flaw. By this flaw, the audience should feel pity and fear. Creon, a character in the Greek tragedy “Antigone”, resembles a perfect example of a tragic hero. This play was written by Sophocles, a historic playwright during the 5th century. It begins with the illegal burial of Polyneices, Antigone’s beloved brother.
This is what causes the downfall of Walter White – and this downfall can be compared to that of famous Greek tragic characters such as Oedipus in Oedipus Rex and Creon in Antigone. Breaking Bad is a modern day Greek tragedy and Walter White is the tragic hero. Aristotle presented an outline of the qualities a tragic hero must possess, and most of them can be applied to Walter White. His tragic flaw is what led to his downfall, and afte... ... middle of paper ... ...are present in modern culture today. Breaking Bad is probably the closest modern example that we will get to Greek theatre in this day and age, and I think Vince Gilligan is a masterful exploiter of that.
Das Brütus: A Tragic Hero In The Tragedy of Julius Caesar, by William Shakespeare, Brutus is the quintessence of a tragic hero. Webster’s Dictionary defines tragic hero as “Any person, especially a man, admired for courage, nobility etc. … in a serious play with an unhappy ending” (277-626). This verbatim definition, however, is useless in an analytical essay. The idea of a tragic hero comes from Aristotle, who thought a tragic hero involved a character of high standing suffering a downfall caused by one or two character flaws.
It allows him to successfully convey the concept of masculinity in its true environment where there is an underlying code of society which is broken by the tragic protagonist and their masculinity, which comes into question resulting in the individual struggling to gain his ‘rightful status’ and overcome his flaws, causing disruption to society which is only fixed by the death of this person. It is very similar to that of a Greek tragedy with the chorus, Alfieri, providing a firm link both in terms of being the chorus and the origin of his name, an eighteenth century writer of tragedies. He is essential to elevate the play, from a mediocre tragedy contributed to by masculinity, to the same level as any other classical tragedy.
In most dramatic plays, tragedy usually strikes the protagonist of the play and leads him, or her, to experience devastating losses. While tragic instances can be avoided, there are other instances where one’s fate and future is out of the protagonist’s control. In Oedipus the King, written by Sophocles and first performed around 249 BC, Oedipus cannot escape his destiny and even though he tries to overcome and circumvent prophecy, he finds out that supernatural forces will get what they want in the end. Oedipus meets the criteria of a tragic hero set forth by Aristotle and his fate within the play demonstrates that one does not always have free will in their lives. Traditionally, in Greek drama, tragedy is meant to reaffirm the concept that life is worth living and that people are in constant opposition with the universe.
Aristotle considered “Oedipus the King” the perfect tragedy, so he modeled his definition after the play. He decided that there were some factors that made a tragedy: plot, character, diction, thought, spectacle, melody. The character had to have a tragic flaw that would ultimately lead to his downfall. The traits of tragedy's character defines Willy Loman as a tragic man. Also, a tragedy must have catharsis at the end, and the end of Death of a Salesman cleanses the audience.
Hamlet¡¦s situation, for example, is considered a tragic one although it differs from the relatively simple plots found in the earlier Greek tragedies. He is a nobleman, revered by his countrymen, who strives to alter the world around him. Ultimately, he must forfeit his own life to see justice done. The plot that unfolds in Shakespeare¡¦s drama includes politics, murder, and domestic strife, but still evokes pity and terror in the audience, precisely as intended by the early tragedians. Students can analyze the elements of tragedy in Hamlet, comparing and contrasting Prince Hamlet¡¦s plight with that of tragic heroes in Greek tragedies and in modern tragedies.