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In the Greek Tragedy Antigone, the playwright Sophocles uses Creons egotism as an authority figure to characterize him as prideful, which leads him to become a tragic hero

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Introduction

In the Greek Tragedy Antigone, the playwright Sophocles uses Creon's egotism as an authority figure to characterize him as prideful, which leads him to become a tragic hero, ultimately portraying that pride and hubris are catastrophic faults of man. Creon is the king of Thebes and passes a decree to leave the enemy Polynices unburied, which is a crime against the natural law of the world. Creon's internal conflict stems from this, as he abuses his power and does not accept his mistakes, which leads to the eventual downfall of his whole family. As king of Thebes, Creon believes he has the ultimate authority, and his own ambition and egotism leads to believe that his power is equal to those of the gods, and that whatever decree he passes is just. Creon only wants more power, and his decree to leave Polynices unburied defies the natural law set by the gods. Despite this, Creon believes he is in the right, and even goes so far as to believe that the gods agree with him, as he believes that "it's intolerable - say the gods could have the slightest concern for that corpse?"1 He is arrogant in his beliefs and his own decisions as king. ...read more.

Middle

Creon is therefore portrayed as a character who is arrogant and quick tempered, as he has accused both his son and Tiresias of treachery against him. Instead of listening to others' suggestions, Creon believes that everyone is trying to manipulate him. His protectiveness and arrogance with his power portrays a sense of paranoia and distrust with Creon, as well as his own egotism. Haemon accuses his father of selfishness, and Creon arrogantly argues that the city is his and he can do as he pleases. Haemon tells Creon that he would male "a splendid king...of a desert island - [him] and [him] alone".4 Haemon's thoughts portray that Creon is ruling for himself only, and is not making laws in the interests of the citizens of Thebes, despite him believing that what he is doing is right. His belief of righteousness adds to his own arrogance and ego. Unintentionally, his decree actually harms the people of Thebes, who are sympathetic to Antigone who tries to bury Polynices. Because of Creon's crime against the natural law, a disease plagues Thebes. When others, including the blind seer Tiresias, tell him that he is wrong and committing a heinous crime, he doesn't listen to them. ...read more.

Conclusion

His wife, the queen, and Haemon both commit suicide, leaving Creon alone. Overcome by grief, he realizes that his own arrogance had led him astray, and that he has suffered for it. He accepts that he is "a rash, indiscriminate fool!"7, and in the end he learns a powerful lesson from the consequences of his own egotism. His downfall portrays Creon as a tragic hero, as he is a character who meets his fate which has been caused by his own personal flaws. In Antigone, Creon is characterized as a tragic hero and flawed character through his own sense of authority, paranoia, ego, and arrogance. Creon argues and condemns anyone who stands against him, even in their own good intent. His arrogance and feeling of self-importance lead him to make decisions that affront the gods, and are not in the interest of the people. He makes decrees on his own personal wishes, as he believes the city belongs to him. Creon believes that everyone around him is trying to undermine his power, causing him to be quickly angered at any criticism. In the end, these qualities lead to destruction of his whole family, creating a powerful impact on Creon. The downfall ultimately portrays him as a tragic hero, succumbing to the consequences of his own pride and hubris. ...read more.

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