Antigonepsychology Essay Example
A conflict I believe many people are faced with day in and day out is, are we bound to the duties of family or must we operate and conform to the duties of the law? A main conflict we see in Antigone is the clash of beliefs between Antigone and Creon. Antigone works at all costs to give her brother the burial she believes he deserves. “But I will bury him, and if I must die, I say that this crime is holy: I shall lie down with him in death, and I shall be as dear to him as he to me” (Prologue. 5-58).
While Creon works to show that he is ruler and no one shall overstep him. “Whoever is chosen to govern should be obeyed- must be obeyed, in all things, great and small” (Scene 3. 35-36). When the play first opens we are shown Antigon...
e and Ismene speaking of the loss of their brothers, Polyneices, and Eteocles. We see that Antigone is not happy with the decision of their king Creon.
Creon buried our brother Eteocles with military honors, gave him a soldier’s funeral, and it was right that he should; but Polyneices, who fought as bravely and died as miserably, they say Creon has sworn no one shall bury him, no one mourn for him, but his body must lie in the fields, a sweet treasure for carrion birds to find as they search for food” (Prologue. 15-22). Antigone, disgusted and outraged that Creon could make such a decision decides to take matters into her own hands. Antigone being the protagonist sets the tragedy in motion.
She confides in her sister, hoping she
will take par, stating that they must do something. “He is my brother. And he is your brother, too” (Prologue. 33). Antigone will stop at nothing to give her brother the burial he deserves. Antigone argues that family is stronger than the law. Why should Polyneices not receive a burial as honorably as Eteocles? As they have both fought bravely and died as miserably. Antigone believes it is her duty, as Polyneices’ sister, that she must do right by him. “But if I had left my brother lying in death unburied, I should have suffered. Now I do not” (Scene 2. 71-73).
These are my principles, at any rate, and that is why I have made the following decision concerning the sons of Oedipus: Eteocles, who died as a man should die, fighting for his country, is to be buried with full military honors, with all the ceremony that is usual when the greatest heroes die; but his brother Polyneices, who broke his exile to come back with fire and sword against his native city and the shrines of his fathers’ gods, whose one idea was to spill the blood of his blood and sell his own people to slavery- Polyneices , I say, is to have no burial: no man is to touch him or say the least prayer for him; he shall lie on the plain, unburied, and the birds and the scavenging dogs can do with him whatever they like. ” (Scene 1. 27-36) Creon is very set in his ways.
He believes that no one shall be an exception and, although Polyneices is his blood, he must be punished. Anyone who tries to
betray him or challenge his principle shall be sentenced to exile. As the plays antagonist, Creon opposes Antigone and stands his ground. “You will give no support to whoever breaks this law” (Scene 1. 47). Not yet knowing his own niece would be one to go against him. Creon learns from Sentry that someone has given Polyneices an honorable burial. Enraged, Creon goes on a rant stating that this one that has deceived him must be punished. “The man who has done this thing shall pay for it” (Scene 1. 117). Creon sends Sentry off to find the deviant. Unbeknownst to neither Creon nor Sentry the mystery was solved soon after.
Sentry returns to give the news of the deviant to Creon, confused as to why Sentry has brought Antigone before him he asks if this is true. Sentry begins to explain; “After those terrible threats of yours, king, we went back and brushed the dust away from the body. The flesh was soft by now, and stinking,” (Scene 2. 23-25) “ and then we looked, and there was Antigone! ”(Scene 3. 34) Creon dismisses Sentry and confronts Antigone about her actions. Antigone confesses, seeing as she believes she has done no wrong. Creon being a vigorous leader shows her no pity. As she is the deviant and she must be punished. Creon will let no one stand in his way of leading and will let no one betray him.
Whoever is chosen to govern should be obeyed-Must be obeyed, in all things, great and small, just and unjust” (Scene 3. 35-37). Creon is a ruler who believes that the law and justice are above all. Although
these people are his blood, and family, he chooses to do what is “just”. We have Antigone, the plays tragic heroine and protagonist, she fights for her brother because she believes, no matter what he did he deserves a proper burial for he fought bravely and died miserably. After all that is her brother and family is stronger than the law. Then we have Creon, the plays antagonist, who opposes Antigone in her beliefs and stands by his own principles.
That Polyneices is not deserving of an honorable burial because he deceived Creon and Thebes and therefore he shall not pass into the afterlife. For Creon the law is the highest power and no one shall deceive it. I can honestly say I can see both sides of this argument and find ways to agree with both Antigone and Creon. I can side with Antigone as far as family comes first and I would do anything and everything in my power, as did Antigone, to protect them and see that they are respected, as everyone deserves. If I were in Antigone’s shoes and they were trying to keep me from giving my brother an honorable burial I would fight long and hard to see that he got the burial that he deserves.
As everyone, no matter the good or bad they have done in their life, deserves a proper burial. I can also see Creon’s argument that the law is the law. As I stated I would do everything and anything to protect my family, however if I knew of a horrendous crime that a family member of mine had committed I would have to make sure
that they were punished for their actions. As I believe Creon is taking it a bit far considering the nature of the situation, I also see that for them in this time burials were taken very serious. Stating that I can agree and disagree with both sides of the argument I will unequivocally be able to see Antigone’s side as the more rational and I can relate with her more. “She covered her brother’s body.
Is this indecent? She kept him from Dogs and vultures. Is this a crime? ” (Scene 3. 65-66) Throughout the play we are constantly faced with the question of who is right? Is Antigone undoubtedly correct in her beliefs that her brother shall not be punished for his actions? Or does Creon have a point that the law is the law and any deviants of the laws must be punished? Whose side shall we choose? Is there a side, or do they both have valid arguments? I believe that the answers to these questions will vary from person to person. However when it comes to beliefs and principles we all have our own and we must stick to them no matter the given circumstances.
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