Discuss the perception of Creon as a noble leader and Tragic Hero rather than a merchant of tyranny and an abuser of power.

Aristotle’s definition of tragedy is “Tragedy is a story taking the hero from happiness to misery because of a fatal flaw or mistake on his part. To be a true tragic hero he must also elicit a strong emotional response of pity and fear from the audience.” (Aristotle)

Creon fits perfectly into this description of a tragic hero.There have been many controversies regarding the true nature of Creon in the play “Antigone” by Anouilh.In this essay of mine, we shall perceive Creon as a noble man rather than an arrogant tyrant.In my view,Creon was the protagonist while Antigone was undoubtedly the antagonist, the cause of the whole tragedy who caused her own downfall as well as the downfall of Haemon and Eurydice courtesy of her obnoxious and immature behaviour.

To prove my point here, I shall start with the fact that Creon hadn’t desired power.He was a patron of art, a lover of music, an idealist. This had been stated by the Chorus in the Prologue. This throne had been forced upon him by the circumstances after the death of Eteocles. As a practical man, Creon distances himself away from the tragic aspirations of Oedipus and his line. His only aim is to maintain social order.Creon compared Thebes to a sinking ship whose crew was only interested in looting the ship for their petty concerns.Creon, in such dire circumstances, stepped in and guided the ship safely to the harbour.He looked upon his kingship as a bane rather than a boon. He described his work as that of a labourer, with no amusement or surprises whatsoever.Looking at his ideas and his frame of mind, we can be almost sure that he is too sensitive to be a tyrant.In fact, this was stated by Antigone herself during the course of the play.

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Let us now discuss the question of Polynices’ burial.

It cannot be argued that Creon was proud. He was firm on his decisions and didn’t change them. Hyperbolically, he was as constant as the pole star. Although he had a fairly cynical view of priesthood and religious rituals (demonstrated in his description of the burial ceremony as “ecclesiastical rigmarole “ ), he had denied Polynices a burial just for political reasons.He had done this to crush any anarchic and revolutionary ideas in Thebes.Even morally, his actions were justified to some extent. Polynices was a drunkard and a gambler.He went ...

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