Essay on Gender Bias Critic of Antigone

Essay on Gender Bias Critic of Antigone

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A Gender Bias Approach to Antigone

Just as one stone removed can break a bridge, one flaw can bring a man to ruins. The flaw of one man cannot bring down an entire kingdom, but rather one outlook of the king can lead to the demise of the whole. In Sophocles' epic tragedy, Antigone, a strong gender bias is present throughout the tragedy, and is partially responsible for the downfall of the king.

To Sophocles the king is not always representative of the people, but acts on his own personal desires and judgments. Sophocles was born in 496 B.C. and from 490 B.C. until 442 B.C. when the first performance of Antigone at the Dionysian theater; there had been many wars in the Greek and Persian history. These ongoing battles would not involve women in combat nor negotiations in the political arena, but merely a person to remain at home, responsible for domestic affairs. There would always be the fear of war, seen on the faces of every adult, reflected in the eyes of every child. Kate Hamburger, the author of From Sophocles to Sartre, and essay on the tragedies of Sophocles with an emphasis on the heroic tragedy Antigone, claims that the effect of war in Sophocles' earlier youth is a contributing cause to his heroic tragedies. Sophocles saw the ideals of democracy early and practiced self-governing in the local market place. According to Siegfried Melchinger, a German dramatist who in his doctoral dissertation made a focus specifically on Sophocles, stated that Sophocles' character is one of an "overlapping discipline." Siegfried Melchinger published his book titled Sophocles in 1974, which David Scarse later translated from German to English. Sophocles composed his education to be "overlapping," in that he was well educated in all a...


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...The essential moral of the tragedy is the warning to the people in power. Sophocles warns the leaders in power not to transgress the rules and limits of governing the people. Sophocles' epic tragedy represented man, woman, death, and the balance between them.

Works Cited

Goldhill, Simon. Reading Greek Tragedy. London: Cambridge UP, 1986.

Hamburger, Kate. "From Sophocles to Sarte." Sophocles the Classical Heritage. Ed. R D. Dawe. New York: Garland, Inc., 1996. 251-269.

Lines, Patricia M. "Antigone's Flaw." Literature an Introduction to Fiction, Poetry, and Drama. Comp. X. J. Kennedy and Dana Gioia. New York: Pearson Longman, 2005. 1495-1497.

Melchinger, Siegfried. Sophocles. Trans. David A. Scrase. New York: Frederick Ungar Co., 1974. 74-86.

Seale, David. Vision and Atagecraft in Sophocles. London: University of Chicago P, 1982. 84-111.

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