At the beginning of the play, Oedipus is largely confident, and with good reason. He has recently freed Thebes from the curse of the Sphinx and has achieved royal status as king. In accordance with Aristotle’s view, the audience members would no doubt possess a deep respect for Oedipus as a “larger and better” version of themselves. For one thing, Oedipus was, in fact, the son of Laius and Jocasta. Therefore, he was noble in the simplest sense because his biological parents were indeed royalty. However, Oedipus believes himself to be the son of Polybos and Merope, the king and queen of Corinth, which allows for him to achieve another kind of nobility, even if it is false. Moreover, as pre...
... middle of paper ...
...h Oedipus was of noble and genuine character, evoked pity from the audience, and possessed a “tragic flaw,” this does not immediately suggest that Oedipus is a tragic hero. Oedipus’ downfall was not a result of his “tragic flaw,” but rather the sole authority of the gods. Upon closer examination, one discovers that even though fate seemed to determine Oedipus’ life, he did have free will. It was this free will, which allowed him to make certain choices in hopes of preventing the ultimate authority of the gods, that eventually led to his suffering and brought the prophecy of the oracle to life.
Sophocles. “Oedipus Rex.” Introduction to Drama. Boston, MA: Pearson Custom
Aristotle. “On the Nature and Elements of Tragedy.” Introduction to Drama. Boston,
MA: Pearon Custom Publishing, 2006.
Need Writing Help?
Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.Check your paper »
- The Tragic Fate of Greek Heroes The hero stands as an archetype of who we should be and who we wish to be. However, the hero has inherent flaws, which we do not wish to strive towards. In literature, these flaws are not used as examples of what we should be but rather as examples of what not to be. This is especially dominant in the Greek hero. The Greek hero battles fate with excessive pride and intelligence, yet follows his fate, making serious mistakes. The Greek hero is strong and mighty while his wit and intelligence are highly valued.... [tags: Papers]
783 words (2.2 pages)
- “Oedipus is, as it were, only a tragic analysis. Everything is already in existence, and has only to be unraveled.” Throughout the history of literature, there has been perhaps no other character quite as complex and convoluted as Oedipus. Whether it be the reality of his parents abandoning him to die or the mere fact that he married his own mother Jocasta, Oedipus has been continually analyzed and processed by scholars in an attempt to discover the means by which Oedipus arrived at his eventual outcome.... [tags: Oedipus, Oedipus the King, Sophocles, Truth]
1617 words (4.6 pages)
- The central character, or protagonist, in William Shakespeare’s tragedy Othello, The Moor of Venice is Othello. Aristotle defined the concept of a tragic hero as the destruction of a noble person, usually with a personal flaw, and this flaw determines their fate. Othello is a tragic hero with a tragic flaw in one of Shakespeare’s most known tragedies. Shakespeare so prominently exhibits the tragic flaw Othello obtains, allowing implications and thoughts, to overrun reality and show how just the insecurity one possesses can allow a person to become powerless.... [tags: tragic, hero, flaw, fate, mistrust]
797 words (2.3 pages)
- Othello has been described as one of William Shakespeare’s most popular plays because the play focuses on its themes of good and evil, military, politics, love and marriage, religion, racial prejudice, gender conflict, and sexuality; but the controversy and debate surrounding Othello is “Why is Othello a qualification for a tragedy?” Most readers are aware of the many famous deaths or acts of death within the Shakespearean plays. And when the main characters die in Shakespeare’s plays, indeed, the readers would categorize the play as a tragedy.... [tags: Othello Essays]
1483 words (4.2 pages)
- ... He uses treachery and will extirpate anyone who poses a threat to him. This is clearly demonstrated when Macbeth reveals his plan to kill Banquo. According to Thomas Thrasher, “Macbeth continues on his murderous course of action because he is determined to hold the crown” (77). The murder of Banquo proves this to be true, because it exposes Macbeth’s draconian nature. Macbeth hires murderers to kill Banquo and his son, Fleance, because they appear to be a threat to him. According to the witches’ prophecy a descendent of Banquo would become the next king.... [tags: Shakespeare plays]
1040 words (3 pages)
- ... Why kill someone in general. Oedipus also puzzled me when he married someone who was old enough to be his mother and conceive children with her. It was not just a coincident that he killed a man that was old enough to be his father and wedded a wife, a woman old enough to be his mother. “But I am the king now, I hold the throne that he held then, possess his bed and a wife who shares our seed”. Just by Oedipus saying these word he is repeating the prophecy that was set out for him. If someone had predicted that I would have married my mother, I would avoid marrying someone who is older than me, I might try avoid being married at all.... [tags: plays by Sophocles]
1440 words (4.1 pages)
- The Victim of Fate in Oedipus Rex The question has been raised as to whether Oedipus was a victim of fate or of his own actions. This essay will show that Oedipus was a victim of fate, but he was no puppet because he freely and actively sought his doom, although he was warned many times of the inevitable repercussions of his actions. When first considering this topic, I speculated that maybe it was the destiny of Oedipus to suffer, but a friend asked me to explain why Oedipus, in the act of gouging his eyes out, cries explicitly: No more, no more shall you look on the misery about me, The horrors of my own doing! Too long you have known The faces of those w... [tags: Oedipus the King Oedipus Rex]
3438 words (9.8 pages)
- Sophocles said that a man should never consider himself fortunate unless he can look back on his life and remember that life without pain. For Oedipus Rex, looking back is impossible to do without pain, a pain that stems from his prideful life. Oedipus is aware that he alone is responsible for his actions. He freely chooses to pursue and eventually accept his own life's destruction. Although fate victimizes Oedipus, he is a tragic figure since his own heroic qualities, his loyalty to Thebes, and his undying quest for the truth ruin him.... [tags: Oedipus Rex, Sophocles]
693 words (2 pages)
- Macbeth as Tragic Hero Tragedy always involves human suffering, but not everyone who suffers is a Tragic Hero. Aristotle established the first criteria that must be met for a character to be considered a Tragic Hero. Although the definition of a tragic hero has evolved over the years, Macbeth was clearly a tragic hero. He had many noble qualities as well as several tragic flaws. Macbeth began as a courageous, brave and good nobleman who was gradually ruined by his own superstition, cowardice and blind ambition.... [tags: GCSE English Literature Coursework]
1167 words (3.3 pages)
- The philosopher Aristotle was a highly intellectual man who loved to reason. One of his ideas was his structured analysis of the “tragic hero” of Greek drama. In his work, Poetics, he defines a tragic hero as “...The man who on the one hand is not pre-eminent in virtue and justice, and yet on the other hand does not fall into misfortune through vice or depravity, but falls because of some mistake; one among the number of the highly renowned and prosperous.” Aristotle’s definition of a tragic hero is clearly shown by the main character in the Greek tragedy Oedipus the King by Sophocles.... [tags: Oedipus Rex, Sophocles]
522 words (1.5 pages)