Oedipus the King: A Classical Tragedy

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Oedipus the King as a Classical Tragedy

Aristotle, in his work 'The Poetics', tried to define the tragedy. Aristotle said that the hero, or at least the main character in a tragedy must be essentially good, but must bring upon himself his fall, due to a fatal flaw. Were the character not noble, many reason, an audience would not care about the person, and would not really notice his fall - from the street to the gutter is not a long way. In today's society this, of course, has been shown not to be true. Modern playwrights have proven that an audience certainly can care about less prolific heroes, but in classical literature this rule stands, and all heroes of tragedy were noble, and tried to do good, but failed. Oedipus follows these rules in that he was a good, understanding and just person while anger and pride were his tragic flaws.

Oedipus was a very good man. Oedipus solved the riddle of the sphinx, which is how he came to be king of Thebes in the first place. This suggests both good intentions and the intelligence to put these intentions to good use. Oedipus was a pio...

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