Flying into a rage, Creon accuses his son of speaking against him just to protect Antigone. During their conversation, Creon reveals his attitudes not only about Antigone but also about women in general and his own power as king. In an era of strict cultural rules that curtailed women liberation, Sophocles created a character like Antigone which is a breakthrough in that age. Polyneices and Eteocles, two brothers leading opposite sides in Thebes' civil war, have both been killed in battle. Antigone, daughter of Oedipus, is left torn between state of family, and in the end, chooses family over state. Men, according to Creon, should be stronger than women, and Antigone has proven herself to be an anarchist, defying Creon's edict. His order that Polyneices body be left to rot unburied as a traitor was not intentionally to offend the gods but rather to show that traitors whether dead or alive will be punished, thus demanding total loyalty to the state.
Of Sophocles's surviving dramatic works, Antigone, , and treat different episodes of the same legend, using many of the same characters. Ekphora - Funerary procession and cremation of remains; Family participated in lamenting song and dance with professional lamenters Perideipnon - Funerary banquet; offerings of food, sacrifices, etc. In tragedy, everything is inevitable, hopeless, and known. Because Creon said yes, he can only sentence her to death. Sophocles incorporated so much dialogue distinguishing between the genders and the misogyny that was so prevalent at the time. Finally three Guards play cards, indifferent to the tragedy before them.
He adds that Haimon is right not to let love weaken him. But their sister, Antigone herself and Creon's soon-to-be daughter-in-law refuses to accept the punishment and buries her brother against the law. This is a summary of qualities has withheld the test of time and can still be used to analyze a written tragedy. Theme of Moral Inflexibility Antigone is incapable of bending where her morals are involved. Antigone and the Chorus discuss the curse that has been placed on her family.
Antigone died for her love and loyalty to her family. Also, she knows the law of the king, yet risks her life to do what is right even if the king is against it. Antigone is caught in the act of performing funereal rites for her brother. Oedipus has just passed away in Colonus, and Antigone and her sister decide to return to Thebes with the intention of helping their brothers, Eteocles and Polyneices, avoid a prophecy that predicts they will kill each other in a battle for the throne of Thebes. It is at this point that the play begins. Creon enters and addresses the Chorus, announcing that the city is safe once again.
But the herdsman pities little Oedipus, and instead of killing him, passes him on to another herdsman from a neighboring kingdom, where Oedipus is raised by the king and queen as their own. Haemon enters and begs his father to stop the guards. Creon and the Sentry What sort of ruler is Creon? Therefore the tragedies were not a result of a plot b. Each had killed the other in fulfilment of their father's curse. Theme of Civil Disobedience One of the major themes in the story is civil disobedience - Creon has said that no one can bury Polyneices, and Antigone buries him anyway.
She knows she was going against the law, her sister Ismene threatens her that she would inform others. Moreover, the Greeks supported absolute monarchs, however, simultaneously they also believed in divine law and had a profound amount of respect for the gods and their laws. This shows that he was trying to make a larger point besides honoring the gods. A Sentry enters, fearfully reporting that the body has been buried. At first Antigone seeks the help of her sister, Ismene, but when she realizes the fear and submissive attitude Ismene possesses, Antigone disregards it as even an option, another example of perhaps Antigone's tragic flaw, her own arrogance.
Antigone paid the ultimate price with her own life. Creon urges her to find Haemon and marry quickly. As a child, she must have known her brothers made her parents unhappy. A plague begins to kill the Theban citizens, and an oracle informs the king that Thebes is being punished because Laius' murderer dwells among them. Outraged, Antigone reveals to Ismene a plan to bury Polynices in secret, despite Creon's order. Creon appears, and the First explains that Antigone was found digging Polynices' grave by hand in broad daylight. Its spring is wound, and it will uncoil by itself.
Oedipus, Jocasta, Laius, Polyneices and Eteocles have all paid their price - and now they suffer with shame and dishonor. When Ismene timidly refuses to defy the king, Antigone angrily rejects her and goes off alone to bury her brother. He goes to the tomb to free Antigone. Ismene swears she will bury Polynices herself then. She also says that she will die willingly for her brother and ensure he is given a proper burial. He goes first to bury Polynices, but Antigone has already hanged herself. Antigone's marriage is worth more to Thebes than her death.
Knowledgeable about the law Antigone did not claim not to have known the laws of the land but with all understanding, she concluded in her mind to follow her conscience and do what she thought was right and thereby go against the law of the king. Haimon responds that his age does not matter because he is correct in his reasoning. Political Themes Another important point from the play is how it related to the world in which it was produced. Fate plays a major role in Antigone. But Creon's change of heart comes too late. However, Polynices is denied a proper burial because he is considered a traitor to Thebes.
The Guard asks if he can do anything for her. Antigone readily admits the crime. Only one Theban champion died - and that was Eteocles who had faced his brother Polynices. She vows to give Polynices the proper burial rites. Known for Principle Both characters are well known for their principled positions in the play. .