Antigone vs Merchant of Venice

915 Words4 Pages
In Sophocles’ Antigone and in Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare, it is clear that society is affected by the inequality inherited in their laws. Throughout both plays, characters have to find their way to achieve their desires and contribute to society. Not only did gender categorize people in that time, but also the faith people had changed the way others perceived you. Although now, we think of law as a benevolent institution, in Antigone we see that law oppresses women rights and is unjust, whereas in Merchant of Venice law limits religion, women and doesn’t act fair upon citizens. In both Antigone and Merchant of Venice, women are minimized and are not taken into account by higher classes. Portia, in Shakespeare’s work, has more ability to solve problems rather Antigone and Ismene in Antigone. This is because Creon, king of Thebes, desires “weak women” who are “not framed to contend with men”. Creon views women in a much lower level where they are not able to do anything. He believes their opinions are immoral and that they don’t have the ability to rule a city. While in Merchant of Venice law doesn’t prohibits women to many of their rights, but they aren’t able to obtain their desires without permission of a man or without going through a situation pretending you are a man. For instance, Portia has to dress up to attend court to free Antonio from forfeiting the bond with Shylock. Portia was a “living daughter [controlled] by the will of a dead father”, which means she can’t chose her own husband. Respecting her father’s will even though he is dead, shows how much women respect and follow the rules men create, not allowing them to choose their own love, and live with who they want. Being a Jew or Christian in Merchant of Venice made a big difference on your life. Religion was a predominant aspect of citizens in that society. Christians dominated and
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