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The True Tragic Hero of Sophocles' Antigone

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Antigone: The True Tragic Hero

Antigone, is the drama written by Sohpocles. There is still a great debate on who is the true tragic hero in Sophocles' Antigone, Creon or Antigone. Many people believes that it must be Antigone, herself. This is because Antigone is an outstanding example of someone who did what she thought was right, while she was among fools, many hardships, and people who were discouragingly uncourageous. When the king Creon ordered that the body of Polyneices, Antigone's brother, be left to rot unburied because he had died as a traitor, she tried to buried him even she knew that she would be punished. She believed that a dead person's soul could not rest if that person's body was not buried so she chooses to challenge a powerful Creon, the king of Thebes in order to let her brother rest peacefully. This presents a huge problem for Antigone; she feels she must obey the laws of the gods and bury her brother, but the penalty would be earthly death. To me, Antigone is a hero, what she did for her brother was very respectful, not many could have the strength to do so in the same situation. However, I believe the true tragic hero in Sophocles' Antigone is Creon, not Antigone. Creon, as king of Thebes, is at the top of the social ladder. Yet, not only is he king, he is also human and possesses frailties, which qualify him to make serious mistakes, and he possesses talents, which allow him also to excel. Hence, Creon is neither overly good nor bad. Appropriately, Creon's station as king place shim in a position of great power, influence and responsibility. The extent of this power was quite evident when he sentenced Antigone to death for disobeying his proclamation. Creon's tragic flaw was his hubris or his pride and arrogance in the face of divine powers. His downfall began when he denied the basic divine right of burial to Polyneices and was cemented when he condemned Antigone for her opposition to his law. When one closely examines Antigone's reasons for burying her brother, it becomes clear that she was simply demonstrating her love, honor, and loyalty to her family. However, the reason that Creon is angered is that he feels injured and insulted that Antigone flagrantly and publicly disobeyed him.
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