Analysis Of ' Antigone ' By Sophocles

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Smith 1
Gabriel Smith
Professor Christopher Foster
English 1302
01 March 2016
Essay 2: Antigone
A hero is a person who shows courage or noble qualities in the face of danger. There are many different types of heroes in literature and media such as superheroes saving the world, or an everyday fireman saving a kitten from a tree. Deriving from Greek literature, tragic heroes are common among early literature. Tragic heroes are defined by Aristotle by the following requirements, they must come from royalty and have excessive pride in themselves, create a sense of fear and pity in the audience that comes from unmerited adversity, and lastly, a tragic hero’s own death or great suffering must originate from their own flaws or errors in judgment (“Aristotle & The Elements of Tragedy”). In Sophocles’ play “Antigone”, King Creon fits all the requirements of a tragic hero. Creon believed that his own decisions and rulings would benefit his kingdom for the better. However, his decisions and rulings end up leading to his downfall when Antigone decides to bury her brother, Polynices, which Creon ruled was against the law to do. Being the fair king he is, Creon believed he had no other choice but to punish Antigone for her actions. Creon’s decision to punish Antigone ultimately ends up in tragedy for him.
Many would argue that Antigone is the hero in the play and Creon the villain. However, upon fuller examination one can conclude that Creon only wanted to create order in his kingdom.
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