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The Play Antigone Essay

906 words - 4 pages

Cassandra Howery
World Literature I: From the Ancient World to the Middle Ages
Week 2 Assignment 2

The play Antigone, written by Sophocles, is one of tragedy. It centers on the heroine Antigone and what happens when she tries to bury her brother, Polyneices, even though the King Creon, has clearly decreed that because of this treason no one should attempt to bury his body. Further, anyone who defies his orders will be put to death. An element of the play is family loyalty, but there is clearly another element, that of the feminine revolution. Imprisoned in a patriarchal society, Antigone does not acquiesce as her sister Ismene does, but it becomes a play of man versus woman and the ...view middle of the document...

At times is seems as if she almost had a death wish, knowing the tragic end to befall her, but feeling that it was somehow her destiny to sacrifice herself, even though her brother was dead. It was still all about family duty and ethics. Even though others were not in agreement with Creon’s decree, Antigone was the only one that stood up to him, pitting woman against man, family against government, duty against conceding.

Although Antigone was unbendable in what she believed, so was Creon. His interest was only in political order and a society of happiness. He wanted simplicity and nothing to destroy what he felt his kingdom was entitled to. Creon did not want to put Antigone to death, she was his niece after all and betrothed to his son Haemon. Both she and his son try to plead with him to change his mind and not be so stubborn. He wanted Antigone to change her mind and not give her life for her brother, who doesn’t deserve it. Creon explained her brother was a traitor and planned to kill his own father. However, Antigone was stubborn also and Creon took it as a sign that she wanted to die, since she knew the truth and still did not change her stance. In the case of Antigone, Meltzer (2001) postulated that “she shows the external extent to which subjectivity is masculinized, on the one hand, and the extent to which the boundary is necessary for veiling the thought of death, on the other hand. She shows where subjectivity is at risk and simultaneously that is a necessity for...

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