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Antigone - Essay Example

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(Name) (Professor) (Course) (Date) “Antigone” and the Balance between the Laws of God and the Laws of Man Introduction One of the most famous tragedies written by the famous Greek writer Sophocles is the tragedy entitled “Antigone,” which was written at around 442 BC (“Antigone” n…
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Download file to see previous pages p.). Of course, there are many other issues present in this tragedy; however, this paper would try to focus on the issue of laws, specifically on what would have happened when there would be no balance between the law of the gods and the law of man. In this case, this paper would try to cite different passages in the tragedy that may help illustrate on how the law of the gods were treated with respect of the law man, and on what may be its effects on Greek society as represented in the text. Body One of the main preludes to the tragedy was the civil war that happened in Thebes. The main participants in the civil war, on which the victor would be able to control the throne, were the brothers Polyneices and Eteocles (“Antigone” n. p.). However, both Polyneices and Eteocles where actually killed in the civil war, making way for Creon to actually occupy the throne (“Antigone” n. p.). In this case, Creon actually decreed that Eteocles would be honored while Polyneices would be publicly humiliated through depriving him of burial, leaving his body to worms and vultures (“Antigone” n. p.). ...
gh burying her alive in the cave (which was contrary to the law of the gods), starting the debate of Antigone and Creon on which law must actually be followed, the law of man (which is Creon’s law) or the law of the gods (“Antigone” n. p.). According to Antigone, the law of Creon must not be followed and that she has the moral obligation to bury the body of her brother despite it being contrary to the law given by him, given that such kind of law actually runs in contrary to the laws of the gods, making the decree of Creon morally corrupt and against the will of the gods (“Antigone” n. p.). According to Antigone, Yes; for it was not Zeus that had published me that edict; not such are the laws set among men by the justice who neither dwells with the gods below; nor deemed I that thy decrees were of such force, that a mortal could override the unwritten and unfailing statutes of heaven…Not through dread of any human pride could I answer to the gods for breaking these. Die I must—I knew that well (how should I not?)—even without thy edicts. But if I am to die before my time, I count that a gain: for when any one lives…can such any one find aught but gain in death? So for me to meet this doom is trifling grief; but if I had suffered my mother's son to lie in death an unburied corpse, that would have grieved me; for this, I am not grieved. And if my present deeds are foolish in thy sight, it may be that a foolish judge arraigns my folly. (“Antigone” n. p.) Despite such arguments by Antigone, however, Creon still stood ground in the law that he made, and even strengthened obedience to the law by creating a harsher punishment for Antigone (“Antigone” n. p.). In this case, Creon actually reasoned that there is no man that must be above law, or must ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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