Character Analysis Of Antigone By Sophocles

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Antigone is a major character and a key contributor to the tension throughout the conflict and impacts the play’s conclusion, influencing the audience perspective with her personality and actions. In the beginning of Sophocles’ play, Antigone is perceived as an outcast who is not to be associated with and was rejected among the people in the land of Thebes. Although Antigone exhibits good personality and morals, her past is crucial to the development of the play and impacts her portrayal to the people of Thebes. As her father, Oedipus, abandons the land of Thebes, it causes the people to despise Antigone and her entire family. The rejection of Antigone family is further intensified by the war between Eteocles and Polynices, passing down the history of destruction and negative perception to Antigone. However, through her actions, she is able to reclaim respect from the people of Thebes and from the audience as well. The first action Antigone takes to dispose of this negativism is by providing her brother a proper burial. Antigone’s strong sense of duty presents an inkling of hope in the people of Thebes and the audience that she might change the fate of the kingdom of Thebes. Furthermore, her steadfast determination exhibits her stance with her own belief as well as against Creon’s law. Although she knows wholeheartedly that her actions might result in her death, she is willing to risk her consequences and openly pursue her conscience and morals. With this courage and determination, Antigone perfectly fits the person Martin Luther King describes in his quote that “an individual who breaks a law that conscience tells him is unjust, and who willingly accepts the penalty of imprisonment in order to arouse the conscience of the community over its injustice, is in reality expressing the highest respect for the law.” Since Antigone breaks the law in obedience to her conscience, while accepting her penalty, she impersonates a character that expresses the highest respect for the law. Thus, the readers maintain a high respect for Antigone and her morals throughout the play. Furthermore, Antigone uses her control over her own death to further differentiate the power between Creon and herself. At this time Antigone's
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