When one’s moral integrity is called into question, denial is often the easiest escape for fear of a damaged reputation. Though often times denial does not prevent the truth from being revealed, human nature, with no guidance from the superego, still feels the need to compromise all morals with the ironic assumption that it will protect the image of one's moral character. However, the majority of the time, it only results in corruption. Throughout lines 308-372 in the play Oedipus Rex, the author Sophocles constantly employs dramatic irony to emphasize how one’s nature to protect their pride overpowers logic and the ability to see the truth. Through Oedipus’ constant denial of what the audience knows to be the factual truth, the control, that his unwillingness to lose his prideful identity holds over him is abundantly clear.
During the conversation between Oedipus and Teiresias, Oedipus’ perpetual denial and rebuttal of Teiresias’ truthful claims causes the audience to experience frustration towards Oedipus, resulting in the reveal of his selfish character. When Teiresias refuses to tell Oedipus of his knowledge regarding the situation in order to protect him, his rage provokes him to say, “You planned it, you had it done, you all but killed him with your own hands” (lines 331-332). Even though Oedipus is unaware of the full truth, he immediately becomes defensive once his character is questioned. Not only does he deny everything Teiresias says, which the audience knows to