Relating to Characters in Sophocles' Plays Essay

Relating to Characters in Sophocles' Plays Essay

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A Tale of Two Cities, Romeo and Juliet. Names such as these bring to mind both plays and pieces of literature that are considered by many to be timeless classics. Perhaps the reason these stories are so popular is not just because they are well written. People are also able to relate to the characters who are often entangled in one of the many complexities within a given society. Authors such as Shakespeare or Charles Dickens are able to discuss some of the issues and problems that face people within society. The answers to the these issues are often left unclear. Providing the audience a chance to ponder these questions and decide for themselves if a certain view is right, wrong, or somewhere in between.
Sophocles was a playwright of ancient Greece, he was a master of creating plays that were thought provoking. Causing people of his time to consider issues within their own society. Many of Sophocles plays were performed during a religious festival held in Athens honoring the Greek God Dionysus, called The City Dionysia. For each festival a competition was held where competitors would write plays that were performed throughout the festival. At the conclusion the author of the best play was declared the winner. Sophocles entered this competition many times and was often awarded first prize. One of his most famous plays, that is still performed today is called Antigone. This play raises some questions concerning the importance of several aspects in Greek culture. Such as the importance of obeying the gods, loyalty to ones polis, and loyalty to ones family. Which is most important?
Those watching the play might also ask who is the hero, and who is the villain? In answer some might declare Antigone a hero for the loyalty and de...


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...efuses to give in on account that Antigone is a women. The play might have ended very differently if Antigone would have been a man. Thirdly Sophocles shows the importance of religion. The thing that gets Creon into trouble in the first place is denying his nephew proper burial rights, when that is what the Gods decree should be given to all those that die. Creon shows that he is a very stubborn man. The only thing that sways him is a prophet's promise of terrible retribution if he does not comply with the will of the God's.
In one of the greatest plays in history Sophocles creates a setting that causes his audience to really think about the society they live in. For the most part Sophocles allows the members of the audience to decide who is right or wrong; hero or villain. He does give one stern reminder to his fellow Greeks. Which is to honor and obey the Gods.

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