This interpretation is generally accepted that through experiencing fear vicariously in a controlled situation, the spectators own anxieties are directed outward, and, through sympathetic identification was the protagonist, his insight and outlook are enlarged. Also, as importantly and significantly, Aristotle introduced the term hamartia, the tragic flaw, or an inherent defect or shortcoming in the hero of a tragedy. Aristotle casually described the tragic hero as a man of noble rank and nature whose misfortune is not brought upon him by villainy or corruption, but by some error of judgement. This imperfection later became known, or interpreted as a moral flaw, although most great tragedies defy such a simple distinction of the term. We could say that in many cases of tragedy the hero is never passive, but struggles to resolve his tragic difficulty with an obsessive dedication, that he is guilty of presuming that he is godlike, attempting to surpass his own human limitations.
Oedipus Rex, written by Sophocles, is the epitome of classic Tragedy, as defined by Aristotle (96-101). Here, Oedipus falls from kingship to blindness and exile. Drama’s other great genre, Comedy, is represented by the laughing actors’ mask. In Comedy the action is usually propelled by a problem or crisis of some sorts, but unlike tragedy it usually ends well. Lysistrata, written by Aristophanes, is a perfect example of classic Comedy.
Frye, Northrop. Handout. "Clue #1: Northrop Frye on Shakespeare". Writing Assignment #7: The Question of Revenge in Shakespeare's Hamlet. By Hannusch, Brent.
Oedipus personifies the ideal tragic hero. While he is a kind, caring and noble man, because of his impulsiveness and quick temper he makes a series of bad decisions that, if they had been thought out, he could have avoided. =Oedipus exemplifies what a tragic hero is, a person who tries to be the best person he can be but has one flaw that eventually will bring him down. Now that Oedipus has been established as a tragic hero does his journey follow a pattern that is similar towards what Joseph Campbell describes in the hero’s journey? In the previous paragraph Oedipus was defined as a tragic hero.
Aristotle has defined this manner so easily for us in The Poetics. The protagonist of a good tragedy should be a person of power and of good character. In this good character there must be a flaw of which, most often, he is unaware. The hero then comes to recognize that mistake, and when he does, his fortunes should take a dramatic turn for the worse. This is the guide by which all tragedies are based.
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.
A major feature of tragedy is the use of a tragic hero. A tragic hero can be defined as the principle character in a tragedy who begins in a position of social importance and who is held in high esteem, but through an error of judgement brings about their own downfall and destruction. In the case of Oedipus the King, this role is fulfilled by Oedipus, who is led by his hamartia (tragic flaw) to do something that ultimately leads to his downfall. Aristotle also outlined the characteristics of a good tragic hero. He must be "better than we ar... ... middle of paper ... ...of the gods, or even their own common sense.
The concept of tragic hero is very important in the construction of tragedy. It is the main cause of pity and fear. The tragic hero is a character between the two extremes; he is neither virtuous nor evil. At the same time, this character is better than the ordinary men or audience, he has some good qualities. Moreover, as a tragic hero, he is moving from happiness to misery by his downfall at the end.
. . these very actions attract a higher, magical circle of influences which ground a new world upon the rubble of the old (16-17). Not all critics believe that there was “error” within the protagonist. Some critics, like Herbert J. Muller in his essay “How Sophocles Viewed and Portrayed the Gods,” believe that Oedipus had no tragic flaw, that he was an innocent victim of the gods: Nor is there in Oedipus the King the deep sense of outrage that modern readers may feel.
Oedipus the King, a Classic Tragedy Aristotle, in his work The Poetics, tries to delineate the idea of a tragedy. Throughout his work Aristotle says that the hero, or at least the protagonist in a tragedy must be substantially good, almost godlike. This hero must bring upon themselves their downfall, due to their fatal flaw. If the hero is not at a high point, an audience will not care about them, and won’t notice their fall. One must fall a long way in social class in order for it to be noticed by the outside man.