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Sister Ismene In William Shakespeare's 'Antigone'

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Antigone is the protagonist in the story Antigone. She is a young girl who rises up against her uncle, King Creon to defend what she believes in. King Creon is seen amongst the society as a dictator and feels no one should go against his orders. One of King Creon’s orders is to not give Antigone’s brother, Polyneices, a proper burial because he thought Polyneices was a traitor. Antigone, however, chooses to bury her brother because in her heart she feels it is the right thing to do, knowing full well that Creon disapproves and has made it clear that if anyone attempts to touch Polyneices, they will be stoned in public. Antigone says,
And yet, as men’s hearts know, I have done no wrong,
I have not sinned before God. Or if I have,
I shall
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Antigone is the figure who identifies with feminist thoughts, while her sister Ismene, believes woman should only follow what men want. Antigone held a meeting with her sister Ismene to discuss burying the body of Polyneices. According to Arlene Saxonhouse, “Antigone’s explanation to Ismene for the need to disobey the speech of Creon depends on affirming the sanctity of the bonds of family, the commonality of their mother’s womb and their great suffering, and the great love for her brother” (474). This quote represents how Antigone feels about the situation. Antigone feels because she and Ismene are sisters and thy feel remorse towards the death of their brother, she should want to help Antigone. Antigone telling Ismene her plans causes feelings that a women should have never had in that time period. Ismene tells Antigone, “We are only women, /we cannot fight with men, Antigone! The law is strong, we must give in to the law” (1.47-49). Antigone is angry for what her sister has said. She claimed, “If that is what you think, /I should not want you, even if you asked to come” (1. 54-56). Even when Ismene was ready to take part of the blame of the crime that was committed, Antigone, being as noble as she is, would not allow her sister to take any of the punishment. Because she protected her sister shows the reader that Antigone is truly a strong…show more content…
Antigone is the woman who stands up for what she believes in with her beliefs and the actions that are carried out. Antigone says, “Your edict, King, was strong, / But all your strength is weakness itself against, /They are not merely now: they were, and shall be,/Operative for ever,beyond man utterly” (1.68-72). Antigone courageous behavior continues from the beginning of the story until the end of the play. Antigone standing up for what she believed in causes her to become a role model towards females in that time period. Women did not have the opportunity to be able to enter public speaking and express how they felt towards situations. Women in that time period were meant to keep opinions to themselves. Creon has a hard time keeping Antigone quiet throughout the play. Creon says, “We keep the laws then, and the lawmakers, /And no woman shall seduce us. If we must lose, /Lets lose to a man, at least! Is a woman stronger than we? (3. 50-51). The death of Antigone’s brother gives a positive outlook for the lives of women in that time period. While Antigone does mature throughout the story, it become more evident later on at truly how strong-willed she is and how protective she is of her family she is. As she grows more comfortable into her role of an outspoken woman she begins to be the care-taker/heroine/strong willed woman of the
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