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The Three Theban Plays

Decent Essays
Oedipus the King has stood the test of time within the world of Literature. During the time of its conception (around 420 BC), it has grown into one of the most regarded and well-known of Greek Tragedies, it is still unforgotten and performed to the present-day. The play is one of a trifecta and it resides between the series titled, The Three Theban Plays, the other two plays include, ‘Antigone’ and ‘Oedipus at Colonus’. The play pursues the titled tragic hero as it focuses upon his ignorance, due to his artlessness regarding his former past builds toward the events of Tragedy as it unfolds. Segal remarks, “The story of Oedipus is the archetypal myth of personal identity in western culture.” (Segal, 1995, pg. 138). His royal status declines…show more content…
Therefore, alternative themes which suggests throughout the course of the play are topics that happen to revolve around the subject of taboo such as incest and patricide which happen to be extremely controversial in societies old and new. Also, prophecy is paramount from start to finish throughout the story and Oedipus attempts to rebel against his own fate. However, the gods earlier predetermine his outcome. Knox writes:
Oedipus Rex is what is known as a tragedy of destiny, its tragic effects is said to lie in the contrast between the supreme will of the gods and the vain attempts of mankind to escape the evil that threatens them. (Knox, 1982,
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“This outburst of creative energy in every field of endeavour took place in the eastern Mediterranean Greece…” (Knox, 1982, Pg.13) Therefore, a cultural birth sparks which rises across the eastern Europe many other disciplines alongside theatre, such as the study of the stars and philosophy. Going to the theatre was a significant part of any Greek citizen’s civic duty, as a cultural and social convention. Only men attended the theatre on the other hand women were excluded as they were categorised as citizens of no legal personhood. The task of tragedy is to bring ‘Catharsis’ to all its spectators, the belief of witnessing a spectacle consisting of tragic themes, is to provide the spectators a feeling of being cleansed and renewed which purges the spectators’ emotions. However, the idea was to strike pity and fear to all who go to see it. Tragedy is commonly defined as a play involving a main character who is born of royal blood with good intentions, the mistakes they commit leads to their downfall. However, what makes Oedipus The King a highly-regarded piece of Greek Theatre is due to Oedipus not realising that he has already fulfilled his fate by committing the deeds that were
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