The Structure Of The Play As An Unfolding Of Ironic Revelation

1048 Words5 Pages
Dominik Sochon
Mrs. Beiner and Professor Seufert
HTH 101-01
Analyze the structure of the play as an unfolding of ironic revelation. In Sophocles’ Oedipus Rex, Oedipus attempts to escape the fate that seeks him. It seems as if the more he tries, the closer he gets to fulfilling his own fate. It is evident that Sophocles uses Oedipus’ hubris and arrogance as a way of foreshadowing what will happen to him at the end of the play. Throughout the play, Sophocles uses blindness and the inescapability of fate in order to create a play in which tragic irony triumphs.
While the prophet that Oedipus summons, Teiresias, is blind, it is Oedipus who is unable to see. The irony of this situation is shown when Oedipus accuses Teiresias of being a “sightless, witless, senseless mad old man” (pg. 20). However, Teiresias seems to know more about Oedipus’ prophecy than what Oedipus knows of it. If Oedipus knew anything about his roots or what he had done as a child, he wouldn’t be summoning Teiresias to help him. At first, Teiresias refuses to abide to Oedipus’ request. Due to Oedipus’ hubris and arrogance, Oedipus gets infuriated and demands that Teiresias tells him what he knows about the murder. Teiresias abides to Oedipus’ request and responds by saying “I say that you are the murderer whom you seek” (pg. 20) and “You can not see the wretchedness of your life, / Nor in whose house you live, no, nor with whom. / Who are your father and mother? Can you tell me?” (pg. 22).
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