Crime And Punishment In Oedipus The King

Decent Essays
Oftentimes, the line between what is fair and just gets blurred, and the punishment does not fit the crime. Other times, a crime is blatantly committed, but other factors get in the way of deciphering if the criminal is truly getting what they deserve. A person can have such a deep flaw flaw that it causes them to get entangled in a web they can’t escape. When a crime is committed and the criminal is caught, they can lose their wealth, family, empires, and be so wracked with guilt that severe punishment is not even necessary. The criminal could admit their guilt, and this will ricochet into something much worse, and punishment is more for show and example setting than any kind of real justice. Two men, Oedipus, from Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex,…show more content…
Oedipus’ character was inherently built to be over-confident, which got him entangled in the fate he didn't want or have control over. Oedipus describes his actions after he heard the prophecy: “Oh, I fled from there. I measured out the stars to put all of heaven between the land of Corinth and such a damned destiny” (44). Oedipus overestimated himself too much,and believed he’d be able to outrun the prophecy of the gods, which in the end insured his life would go as the gods decreed. Oedipus’s fatal flaw left him blind to the truth, but does not give him reason to be punished for it. An author describes Oedipus’s fatal flaw as the fact that he was “but hot-tempered and too sure of himself” (Kitto 138-39). Oedipus was angry, making him jump to conclusions, and confident, making him believe he couldn't be wrong, but that doesn't mean he was guilty. He was simply unaware of what he was doing because his flaws forced him to overlook…show more content…
In a statement before his sentencing, Madoff addressed the judge:“ I live in a tormented state now knowing of all the pain and suffering that I have created. ”(New York Post). Madoff not only bears the weight of his sentence, but the weight of his shame and guilt, and admitted to being the source of ruin for others. Madoff clearly suffered and felt shame before the scandal even broke. In an article about Madoff’s scandal, Madoff’s brother told press that “His brother disclosed his huge fraud scheme to him the evening before confessing to his sons” (Henriques). Bernie Madoff seemingly felt the weight of the guilt so much that he confessed to his families and essentially turned himself in, which might help support the fact that he understands the gravity of what he did and will never forget it. For Oedipus and Madoff, these moments of clarity are nothing compared to the lifetimes of suffering they will endure but did not
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