Essay on Sophocles ' The Play ' Antigone '

Essay on Sophocles ' The Play ' Antigone '

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Antigone Dilemma
The play Antigone, written by Sophocles in 442 B.C.E, follows the protagonist Antigone as she defies her king’s rules to bury her dead brother. Antigone’s two brothers had struggled over who should rule the kingdom and sit on the throne. The two could not agree with one another on who should rule the kingdom. This feud leads to the two brothers attacking one another with their armies and killing one another. Because one of the brothers went to a neighboring city and recruited foreign soldiers to attack the kingdom he was labeled a traitor. Since the two brothers had died the crown fell to their uncle Creon. Once made King the uncle named one of his nephews a traitor and decided that he would not be allowed a proper burial. This decision made Antigone very angry and she felt a moral responsibility to give her brother a proper burial. Antigone conspired a plan to bury her brother and she did what she believed what was right. She was caught burying her brother and the King sentenced her and her sister to death. This action is what had started the main dilemma in the play. The dilemma is a question of morality versus legality between Antigone and Creon’s viewpoints. Antigone believed that her brother deserved a proper burial and must do whatever she can to make this happen. Although she directly defied the King’s rules she did what she had to anyway, despite the consequences that she knew would follow. The king on the other hand, believed he must be strict and stick to his rules. In order to gain the citizen’s respect and obedience he believes that he must punish his niece for defying him. Antigone believed in the importance of moral responsibilities while Creon believed in the significance of authority. The two tru...


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...o Antigone he would have understood why exactly she buried her brother. They also could have had a fair trial so that Antigone could share her opinions with an unbiased group of people and so Creon could explain his side as well. Having a third party decide Antigone’s fate could have helped to reach a fair decision on her punishment. This also could have a great chance for both sides to listen to one another and for the king to listen to opinions besides his own before deciding on such a rash penalty. The dilemma shown in this play was a very complex idea. Having two people who both believe that they are correct can be extremely difficult for one to say that one viewpoint or idea is more correct than the other. Compromising between two perspectives, listening to one another, or involving a third-party can all be effective solutions to mediate between the two ideas.

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