The Immense Character Development in Antigone by Sophocles

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Brad Moore, a famous athlete once said, “Pride would be a lot easier to swallow if it didn’t taste so bad.” In Sophocles’ well known Greek tragedy, Antigone, the main character undergoes immense character development. Antigone transforms from being stubborn and underestimated to courageous and open-minded. In reality, it is Antigone’s insular persistence that leads to her ultimate decline in the play as well as others around her. After the death of her two brothers, Eteocles and Polynices, Creon becomes the new ruler of Thebes. With this, he grants Eteocles an honorable funeral service for his brave fighting. Claiming that Polynices was a traitor, he shows complete refusal to grant Polynices a respectable and worthy service. Clearly disagreeing with Creon’s inexcusable demands, Antigone declares she will bury Polynices herself so that his soul can be at peace. Entirely aware of the consequences and dangers of this action, which include death, she goes forward vowing her love for her family. Antigone shows strength and determination towards her brother. However, her growing sense of pride leads to her downfall as she sacrifices everything for her family. Antigone develops into an admirable character in which she portrays her defiance and courage, pride and open mindedness, and sense of moral righteousness to show vital character growth as the play progresses. Antigone’s own excessive pride drives her to her defeat. Her arrogance and strive for self-importance blinds her to the consequences of her actions. Ismene, Antigone’s sister, rejects to take part in the crime leaving Antigone all on her own. Ismeme declares “why rush to extremes? Its madness, madness” (Sophocles 80). Ismene fails to comprehend the logic behind her siste... ... middle of paper ... ..., this sense of arrogance angers Creon to a point beyond belief. Antigone’s refusal to cooperate causes Creon to go mad with irritation and frustration. Wanting to show his sense of power, he refuses to back down in fear of losing his position. His stubbornness grows stronger as Antigone continues to disobey his commands. Antigone’s strong and steady foundation helps her show defiance. She is able to overcome the opinions of the people and commit to helping her brother regardless of the after effects. She ignores what everyone says and does only as she wants. She is powerful, both physically and mentally, and is successful in her tasks. Antigone matures into a commendable and respectable character in which she depicts her rebelliousness and bravery, pride and tolerance, and sense of moral righteousness to demonstrate fundamental character development in the play.

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