This book represents a symbol of the lives of many, showing that you can not run away from fate because it decision that will forever remain. It was written in the honor of, the god of theater, Dionysos.
Essay on Oedipus. Research Paper on Oedipus The King
Also, for the annual festival where playwrights competed for prizes. It was a major public occasion, with immense attendance expected. This theatric happening was written in the turning point of the war that saved Greece from a huge Persian invasion. The actual time period when this play was performed was not recorded. But, it was when mythology and tragedy in theatre became very interesting and popular to watch. There were two main settings. A town in main Greece called Thebes and another place called Corinth. At Thebes the play is mainly located in the exterior of Oedipus' palace at Thebes.
The main characters in this book are Oedipus, Tiresias, As the story progresses, however, Oedipus' power and pride are broken down.
Compare and Contrast ‘Oedipus often the King’ Topics
Some readers imagine a broken, pitiful old man who's been crushed by the avenging gods. From the script, it is clear that Oedipus is apparently handsome and well built. He is described as a "tower of strength," and has a sharp way of looking at people. He is quick-tempered, and often acts recklessly and violently. His followers love him, and consider him a brilliant ruler because he solved the riddle of the Sphinx and brought ease to the city of Thebes as Oedipus became their savior.
Oedipus also shows wisdom, love for his children and a reputation for high moral standards. We"ve come to this conclusion because even when the threat, of whoever killed Lauis would suffer, applied to him he still followed through with the punishments. He has a passion for truth, and shows courage in the face of disaster or conflict. These same noble qualities, however, lead to his tragic flaw and brought upon his downfall.
His wisdom became hypocritical, and he refused to believe anyone who didn"t agree with him. His love for his children becomes obsessive, and he refuses to see that he's married his own mother. His passion for the truth and high moral standards trapped him into a deadly quest for the murderer of Laius, which resulted in being him. The one trait of Oedipus that did not change in the course of the play, was his strength and courage in the face of disaster. Every step he took to solve the mystery of Laius' murder brings him closer to being revealed, yet he never stops searching for the truth.
But his courage and strength help him endure the pain and suffering that come with knowledge of what he has done. Tiresias is a wise, old man who has supernatural powers to interpret the past and predict the future. The fact that Tiresias is blind makes his imaginary abilities even more mysterious. This may also lead Oedipus to deny Tiresias' ability to "see" the truth.
At first Tiresias refuses to answer Oedipus' questions about the prophecy. He appears as a character that was always a messenger for the gods. Therefore, when Oedipus insulted Tiresias, in the first scene, and accused him of being a false prophet. Oedipus, however, did not realize that he was also attacking the gods while he was attacking Tiresias.
Although his appearance in the play was short, Tiresias sets the tone of the moral and religious beliefs of the gods. He was interrogated by Oedipus, yet, withheld the important information in which he was not to reveal. Creon is Oedipus' brother-in-law and a trusted assistant of the king. He is also third in command of Thebes as a political leader. The Chorus mentions that he is an honest man who is reliable, trustworthy, and sensible. When Creon has returned from the oracles at Delphi was when he was first seen in the play.
But honor is important to him- he is quick to defend his reputation and protest his innocence. Jocasta is the wife of Oedipus and his mother. She was first married to Lauis but then her son killed him. Early in Oedipus the King we realized that she was trying to mediate between Oedipus and Creon when they quarreled.
She appeared to us to be a kind, gracious, and caring wife. When Laius was murdered she asked her brother, Creon to share her rule of Thebes. Oedipus solved the riddle of the Sphinx and became her second husband. The second half of the book begins after a priest confronts Oedipus asking for his help. Oedipus needed to help the city from dying. Then, Creon, Jocasta"s brother, appears with a message. The message was an order from Apollo stating that "in order for the city to rid themselves from the plague, they had to punish the beings involved in the murder of King Lauis.
Then the question arose, who could the murderer be? Oedipus was talking to the chorus and at the same time trying to solve the mystery. Then, Tiresias entered the scene with important information that he withheld. He was insulted by Oedipus and told everyone that they were very ignorant. He knew whom the murderer was but refused to tell. He said that "what will come will come, even if I shroud it in silence" At this moment Oedipus was very frustrated and scorned Tiresias.
This resulted in Tiresias yelling out who the murder was.
Oedipus the King: A Tragic Hero Essay
It was Oedipus. But as unenlightened as Oedipus is, he refused to believe Tiresias. They verbally fought back and forth and insulted each other. Then, Creon enters the scene. And as the search continues, Oedipus and Creon get into a disagreement. Oedipus tells Creon that he is a traitor. Oedipus questions the messenger, and found out that the messenger had been herding sheep and had met a shepherd who had found Oedipus, had taken the baby, had taken the pin out of his ankles, and had given him to the king and queen of Corinth to raise as their own.
Oedipus says, "It's time to clear this up. Send for the other shepherd. Jocasta begged Oedipus not to pursue the matter of searching for the murderer. Oedipus said he had to know only because the city was relying on him. Jocasta ran out horribly upset. Hours later, the other shepherd was brought in.
He had already figured things out of why he was there, but pretended he did not remember a thing. Then, he begged the other messenger to also stay quiet. However, Oedipus insisted on the truth. It was revealed that Oedipus was the murder of Lauis, his father. Now everybody knew the truth. The baby of Jocasta and Lauis was Oedipus. He now realized that Creon and Tiresias were correct in their beliefs. Oedipus rushed out. The next scene was an extremely graphic anecdote. Jocasta ran into the bedroom, screaming. She locked the door from inside. A few minutes later, Oedipus came in, and broke down the door with what seemed to be supernatural strength.
He found Jocasta dead, hanging. Oedipus took the body down, and quickly removed the pin that held up her dress. He stabbed it again and again into his eyes, saying he has looked at his mother's naked body when he shouldn't have, and he has learned what he now wishes he had not. It was said that Oedipus had actually torn the globes from their sockets. Oedipus then begged to be taken out of the city of Thebes to end the plague.
see Yet he had no strength and no guide. Oedipus comes in. Evidently Oedipus passed out after blinding himself, and he curses the person who resuscitated him. The Chorus asks, "How were you able to rip out your eyeballs?
As you can see, Oedipus was a victim of fate and Apollo"s prophecy had been solved by the city of Thebes. Which theme seems most important to you: the dangerous effects of power, or the need for a nation to reform itself? In all three plays you are repeatedly asked if Creon is a cruel or a fair ruler, a cruel or a fair human being.
In the beginning Oedipus seems to be a child of fortune who gained a kingdom by solving the riddle of the Sphinx. In the middle he appears to have been irrevocably doomed by a prophecy before he was even born. And by the end he has found a sort of contentment as he dies with his beloved daughter Antigone by his side. Oedipus' unforeseen reversal of fortune suggests we cannot accurately predict our future- or escape our past. Although he does all he can to live honestly and avoid the crimes prophesied for him, Oedipus can't escape the relentless fate that pursues him.
Creon tries to manipulate fate in his favor, but he fails. Inevitably the oracle's prophecies are fulfilled. Sophocles meant this to pertain not just to the Thebes of the play, but also to his contemporary Athens. The plague that begins the play is viewed as a punishment from the gods, and only when the sins of Oedipus have been punished and purged is Thebes restored- for a time- to spiritual harmony. The loss of the city's spiritual faith is seen in Oedipus' denial of Teiresias' power to predict the future, and in Iocaste's refusal to believe in the ability of prophets to speak for the gods.
They refuse to compromise or to humble themselves before others. They stubbornly refuse other characters the right to express opinions different from their own, and they abuse their power to force others to accept their points of view. Oedipus is so arrogant and self-confident that he even challenges the will of the gods. This leads directly to his downfall, and he is harshly punished. The most obvious search for truth is Oedipus', but even the minor characters are looking for answers to the meaning of life. The herdsman, for example, has waited many years to reveal the truth of Laios' murder, and is finally given the chance to tell his story when Oedipus summons him to Thebes.
Even Iocaste is given the opportunity to discover the truth of Oedipus' early years before he became king of Thebes. The Chorus, too, is searching for a truth- the moral lesson to be learned from Oedipus' tragedy.
Man versus man conflict
Teiresias alone stands as a figure who can see truths hidden from all but the gods. Creon, for example, is ready to die in order to save the city. Teiresias offers to have himself killed when Oedipus suspects him of betraying the trust of the sacred city of Delphi. Iocaste hangs herself to save her honor. Oedipus blinds himself for murdering his father and marrying his mother, but will not die until he has paid for his sins, to save the city.
Antigone dies because she insists on giving her brother Polyneices a proper burial. Although the ways of the gods are sometimes harsh and cruel, Oedipus finally recognizes and accepts the oracle's prophecy as it was predicted at his birth. You hear the wisdom he gained from his suffering when he prays to the gods for forgiveness and humbly asks for mercy at the conclusion of Oedipus the King. The four themes in this play are religion, geographic influences, economic development, and society.
The first of the four is religion. Religion was very substantial to the citizens in Thebes. They believed in many gods, which made them believe in Polytheism. Lucky you!
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Now all you have to do is choose one. Do yourself a favor and pick a topic that interests you. If you are asked to come up with a topic by yourself, though, you might start to feel a little panicked. Maybe you have too many ideas—or none at all. Take a deep breath and start by asking yourself these questions:. Did a particular image, line, or scene linger in your mind for a long time?
If it fascinated you, chances are you can draw on it to write a fascinating essay. Confusing moments in a work of literature are like a loose thread in a sweater: if you pull on it, you can unravel the entire thing. Ask yourself why the author chose to write about that character or scene the way he or she did and you might tap into some important insights about the work as a whole. Is there a phrase that the main character uses constantly or an image that repeats throughout the book?
Great works of literature are complex; great literary essays recognize and explain those complexities. Maybe the main character acts one way around his family and a completely different way around his friends and associates. The best questions invite critical debates and discussions, not just a rehashing of the summary. Conversely, is this a topic big enough to fill the required length? Keep track of passages, symbols, images, or scenes that deal with your topic.
These are the elements that you will analyze in your essay, and which you will offer as evidence to support your arguments. For more on the parts of literary works, see the Glossary of Literary Terms at the end of this section. These are the hows —how the characters speak, how the story is constructed, and how language is used throughout the work. A thesis is a claim about a work of literature that needs to be supported by evidence and arguments. The thesis statement is the heart of the literary essay, and the bulk of your paper will be spent trying to prove this claim. A good thesis will be:.
A really strong thesis will argue for a reading of the text that is not immediately apparent. How does the monster tell us so much about the human condition? Question: Would Piggy in The Lord of the Flies make a good island leader if he were given the chance? Golding emphasizes this point by giving Piggy a foil in the charismatic Jack, whose magnetic personality allows him to capture and wield power effectively, if not always wisely. The reasons and examples that support your thesis will form the middle paragraphs of your essay.
One essay prompt might ask you to compare and contrast two characters, while another asks you to trace an image through a given work of literature. These questions require different kinds of answers and therefore different kinds of arguments. You can either go subject by subject or point by point. This can be a highly effective strategy if you want to make a counterintuitive argument—that, despite seeming to be totally different, the two objects being compared are actually similar in a very important way or vice versa.
Remember that your essay should reveal something fresh or unexpected about the text, so think beyond the obvious parallels and differences. Choose an image—for example, birds, knives, or eyes—and trace that image throughout Macbeth. Sounds pretty easy, right? All you need to do is read the play, underline every appearance of a knife in Macbeth , and then list them in your essay in the order they appear, right?
Well, not exactly. In the Macbeth example above, think about the different contexts in which knives appear in the play and to what effect.
In Macbeth , there are real knives and imagined knives; knives that kill and knives that simply threaten. Categorize and classify your examples to give them some order. Finally, always keep the overall effect in mind. Is the society depicted in good for its citizens? You might be asked to judge a character or group of characters Is Caesar responsible for his own demise?
For this kind of essay, there are two important points to keep in mind. Every literary essay expects you to read and analyze the work, so search for evidence in the text. What do characters in have to say about the government of Oceania? What images does Orwell use that might give you a hint about his attitude toward the government? As in any debate, you also need to make sure that you define all the necessary terms before you begin to argue your case. You should define your terms right up front, in the first paragraph after your introduction.
Second, remember that strong literary essays make contrary and surprising arguments. Try to think outside the box. But can you think of any arguments for the opposite side? Even if your final assertion is that the novel depicts a cruel, repressive, and therefore harmful society, acknowledging and responding to the counterargument will strengthen your overall case. Your introduction sets up the entire essay.
A persuasive literary essay immediately establishes its writer as a knowledgeable, authoritative figure. An introduction can vary in length depending on the overall length of the essay, but in a traditional five-paragraph essay it should be no longer than one paragraph. However long it is, your introduction needs to:.
Your introduction should situate the reader and let him or her know what to expect. What book are you discussing? Which characters? What topic will you be addressing? Why is this topic important, and why is your particular position on the topic noteworthy? Literary essays make unexpected connections and reveal less-than-obvious truths. Beware of the two killer words in literary analysis: interesting and important. You know what? It actually sounds pretty amateurish. Another typical mistake student writers make is extolling the work or author.
Keep your introduction streamlined and to the point. The organization of this middle section of your essay will largely be determined by the argumentative strategy you use, but no matter how you arrange your thoughts, your body paragraphs need to do the following:. A good topic sentence not only alerts readers to what issue will be discussed in the following paragraph but also gives them a sense of what argument will be made about that issue. Body paragraphs are like bricks: each individual one needs to be strong and sturdy or the entire structure will collapse.
Make sure you have really proven your point before moving on to the next one. Good literary essay writers know that each paragraph must be clearly and strongly linked to the material around it. Think of each paragraph as a response to the one that precedes it. A good conclusion will:.
In your introduction, you made a case for why your topic and position are important. You should close your essay with the same sort of gesture. How will that knowledge help them better appreciate or understand the work overall? Your essay has most likely treated a very specific element of the work—a single character, a small set of images, or a particular passage. In your conclusion, try to show how this narrow discussion has wider implications for the work overall. A conclusion should open up your highly specific, focused discussion, but it should do so without drawing a sweeping lesson about life or human nature.
The Oedipus Plays by: Sophocles. Themes Motifs Symbols Key Facts. Writing help How to Write Literary Analysis. Introduction When you read for pleasure, your only goal is enjoyment. Contents 1. Ask questions 2. Collect evidence 3. Construct a thesis 4.