Antigone; Who's Tragedy Was It?

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After reading over Sophocles’ Antigone, I would say that it is Antigone’s tragedy. When I say tragedy I mean it is a situation that starts with difficult making decisions and ends with suffering and pain. That being said, I would say that it isn’t only Antigone’s tragedy, but Creon’s as well. Antigone’s tragedy lead her uncle to face a difficult decision. He is stuck between a rock and a hard place, either to uphold the law by killing one of his own family, or punish Antigone less severely to show that he isn’t serious about death being a punishment and apart of his law. Creon’s tragedy was his dilemma about how he deals with his Antigone, his niece. Each main character could also be tragic figures. Ismene, sister of Antigone, having to make a decision between disobeying Creon and dealing with the consequences or being disloyal to both her brother, Polynices, and sister. For Haemon, Creon’ son, to choose between his wife to be and his father. Father of Antigone, Oedipus, had two sons, Eteocles, the oldest and Polynices. Beginning with their father’s death, it was agreed and stated that each would take their place at the throne from one year to the next. Being that Eteocles was the oldest, he took the throne first. But after his first year, he refused to step down. Thebes was then marched on by Polynices following six foreign princes. Each brother was killed by one another during a duel after all who battled were defeated. After the death of the brothers, Creon, their father’s brother-in-law, became king. An order was made by Creon to only bury Eteocles because he defended the city, leaving Polynices to rot and be eaten by dogs. The order was later on told to Antigone by Ismene. Antigone’s tragedy was to make the decision on whether she should disobey Creon’s demand and suffer the consequences or become disloyal to her brother and not give him a proper burial.

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