King Lear as a Tragic Hero

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ABSTRACT A tragedy cannot be completed without a tragic hero and Aristotle states that a tragic should be a person who is born in a noble family, like Oedipus Rexs. Some critics like Henrietta L.Palmer and Heather A.Fowler has portrayed Cordelia as the tragic hero of the play just because of her truthfulness and sacrifices. However, some other critics like Dr.Ronnie Bie and A.C. Bredely has their affirm opinions that King Lear is the real tragic hero of the play. Although, Cordelia is one of the main protagonists of the play yet her character does not meet the Aristotelian principles of tragic hero. She is very sweet and kind; but according to Aristotle, a person who is an embodiment of goodness only, cannot arise pity and fear in the audience. That is why Cordelia is not eligible for the title of tragic hero of “King Lear” because in spite of pity and fear, we feel sympathy for her. On the other hand, King Lear’s character fulfills approximately all those requirements that are compulsory for a tragic hero. Dividing his Kingdome among his selfish daughters, banishment of Cordelia and to exile his loyal servant, Fool are some tragic flaws of King Lear. The tragic hero must commit some mistake that is called his tragic flaw. The hero must have a reversal of fortune. Near the end of the play the hero will gain some sort of self-knowledge and the audience will somewhat feel satisfied. All these above qualities can be observed in King Lear’s character. That is why audience feels pity and fear for King Lear, which makes him the real tragic hero of the play. INTRODUCTION This research has been completed by qualitative research process and I have done my research by reading different books, articles, journals and research papers, which were relevant to my research topic. I have thrown some light on the meaning of “Tragic Hero” then I have explained the

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