[Name of the Writer]
[Name of Instructor]
The play Antigone was a tragedy by Sophocles written before 441 BC. The play depicts the differences among characters and the moral conflict over the values. In the drama portrayed through characters such as Antigone and Creon’s the moral conflict that whether God’s law is powerful or the City’s law is more powerful. This conflict arises between the Antigone and the king of Thebes Creon who is also her uncle-in-law. In the play, the city of Thebes had been through war and during this war both the brothers of Antigone died. After the death of Antigone’s father, her brothers decided to rule alternating each year but when the time of Polynices came Eteocles expelled him and kept the throne himself. This enraged Polynices and he gathered an army to fight against his brother and in the war, they both died. However, among both brothers, the Eteocles was buried with honor and was given the title of a hero as he was fighting for Thebes. On the other hand Polynices was dishonored and was considered an enemy of the city so he was left unburied.
After their death, Antigone decided to bury Polynices even though it was against the law. For this purpose, she called her sister Isme outside the palace gate to plan the burial. She told Isme that “Creon destined our brother the one to buried to shame” (Sophocles,10). She is not pleased with the king’s decision but due to the fear of the death penalty, Isme refused to help Antigone. However, this did not stop Antigone as she said to her sister “I will do my part and thine” (Sophocles,12) and decided to defy the state’s law and planned a burial for her brother as according to her brother deserved this. Antigone was right to defy the state as it was her moral and legal right to bury her brother so that they could honor their family. Also, as a human being it the right of every person to be buried respectfully. Although Antigone was committing a crime in eyes of the king and state yet her intentions were purely justified, as she was following the will of God.
Antigone took a stand against the injustice that the king did just to honor her brother without taking anyone’s help. Even after being caught she unapologetically accepted her crime by justifying them as her moral responsibility and God’s will. She states that “But all your strength is a weakness, itself against The immortal unrecorded laws of God” (Sophocles,252). According to Antigone God’s laws are more important than any state’s law. Being a woman and committing a civil disobedient act in the era where women were not even allowed to have opinion she showed courage and determination to go against the king. Although she knew the consequences that she would face if caught. Although her actions were against the law yet as an active member of society her decision was justified as per the religion.
In the play both the characters, Antigone and Creon suffered as by not burying her brother she would be guilty in front of God but if she arranged a burial she would be guilty in front of King. Similarly, by not allowing the burial he would go against God’s will if he allowed the burial he would be wrong politically. Thus, they both represent two sides of the story where they both were right at their point. However, as the play ends Creon also accepted that Antigone was right and her actions were morally and ethically justified. To Antigone, her family was more important than her own life as she was ready to sacrifice her life for the sake of her brother.
Every person in the world claims to do anything when it comes to their family yet Antigone proved this by planning a burial to honor her brother. Although some people might disagree with Antigone's decision by arguing that she did it for herself so that she could be at peace because in one scene she said: “Creon cannot keep me from the one I love.”(Sophocles, 56). This scene shows that she advertently wanted to break the law and go against the king. However, many people favored her decision by claiming that she truly cared for her family and besides a respectful burial is her brother’s right as a human being. While trying to bury her brother she sprinkled a layer of dirt on him and then escaped safely but in the second attempt to bury her brother Antigone was caught and was sentenced to be buried alive yet she still never stepped back from her decision.
As a human, every one of us has encountered a certain situation in which we are at the dilemma of whether to follow the law or protect our family. For instance, if someone is suffering because of the cruel behavior of another person or is being bullied by another person it is our moral and ethical responsibility to save the person. Same was the dilemma Antigone faced in the play as no one would let their loved one rot alone in a field after battling for personal justice. Also, culturally and religiously Antigone's decision was right because her decision was following God’s will, as it is the religious duty of every person to bury the dead respectfully by arranging a burial.
Dawe, Roger. Sophocles (Routledge Revivals): The Classical Heritage. Routledge, 2014.
Useful LinksFree Essays About Blog
If you have any queries please write to us
Join our mailing list
@ All Rights Reserved 2023 email@example.com