Justification of Creon in Antigone by Sophocles

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Justification of Creon in Antigone by Sophocles Antigone is a tragic play written by Sophocles in about 441b.c. The play is a continuation of the curse put upon the household of Oedipus Rex. Sophocles actually wrote this play before he wrote Oedipus, but it follows Oedipus in chronological order. The story of Antigone begins after the departure of Oedipus, the king of Thebes, into self-exile. Oedipus’ two sons, Eteocles and Polyneices, were left to rule over Thebes. An argument over rights to power forces Polynices to leave Thebes. Some time passes and Polynices returns with the army from Argos and attempts to overthrow his brother. The two brothers fight and kill one another and the war ends. Creon, the uncle of the two brothers becomes the new king of Thebes. Because Polynices proved to be an enemy of the state, Creon chose to leave his body unburied. In the Greek culture, the denial of Funeral rights was a fate reserved for the worst criminals (). This is the point where the dialogue of the play actually begins. Antigone, sister to Polynices and Eteocles, disobeys Creon and properly buries the body of Polynices. When Creon hears what Antigone has done he has her placed in a cave and essentially buried alive. This enrages Creon’s son, Haimon, who turns his own sword upon himself. When Eurydice, Creon wife her the news she to kills herself. Creon is left at the end to mourn the death of two nephews, a niece, a son, and a wife. This play more than an issue of right verses wrong or fate verses free will; it is a collision between the rightful demands of the family and the laws of the state (). Creon being in the position of ruler chooses to follow the demands of the state. There is much debate as to which ch... ... middle of paper ... ...o loose many members of his family. The grief he must have felt for these decisions is hard to comprehend. Whether or not Creon wanted to be king was not a circumstance that he had power over. But since he was king he know had a responsibility to lead and protect his people. This meant punishing those that opposed the state of Thebes family or not. Therefore it was a correct decision. It served to good of the whole not Creon’s own selfish desires. Antigone defied this decision putting her in the same category of her brother – a trader of the state. Therefore she must also be punished in much the same way as a criminal of the state was punished. Through looking at the history of the time period, the statements of the chorus, and the critical analysis offered, I believe it was Sophocles to portray the character of Creon as the character that acted correctly.
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