Antigone Tragic Characters
Gonzalez 1 English Honors 22 November 2011 In the story “Antigone” both characters, Antigone and Creon are examples of tragic characters. The tragic character is a man of noble stature. He is not an ordinary man, but a man with outstanding quality and greatness about him. This character causes his own downfall due to his own tragic flaw. Creon is a tragic character in the story because of his tragic flaw, his pride and failure to understand when he is wrong. This flaw causes the downfall of Creon because he does not listen to anyone when everyone was telling him to just stop and release Antigone.
Antigone is also a tragic character in this story. She is a tragic character because she is stubborn and goes through an outburst of fear and self-pity after she is facing death. Antigone stays loyal to her family that slowly brings her to her down fall. In my opinion though I believe that Creon is the real tragic character because Creon is a perfect example of what Aristotle described in his book “Poetics. ” In Aristotle’s book he describes a tragic character as a character that should have harmartia, peripetia, catharsis, and anagnorisis.
Creon goes through all of these stages during the story. His character flaw is his excessive pride and inability to accept his wrong doings. Creon’s fortunes are reversed when everyone begins to go against him and when his wife and own son commit suicide. Creon releases his emotion after he learns about his wife’s and son’s death he goes through catharsis, and releases his feelings of grief. At the end of the story Creon finally realizes what he has done is wrong but it is too late for him to be able to change anything; Creon goes through anagnorisis at the end of the story.
According to Aristotle these four terms are the key ideas in order for a character to be a tragic character. Creon easily meets these expectations with ease and that is why Creon is the true tragic character. Creon’s pride at the beginning of the story hints that he is the tragic character of the story. Creon could not accept that he was wrong and kept on telling himself that he was right and everyone else were the ones who were wrong. “Do you want me to show myself weak before the people? ” (Page 792 line 28) Creon is telling Hameon that he will not give in to nyone whether it is family or not he can not allow his people see him as a weak leader. Creon is too arrogant to listen to his own son when he tells him to let Antigone go. “Let’s lose to a man, at least! Is a woman stronger than we? ” (Page 792 line 51) Creon is talking to Hameon when he says this to him. Creon is too much in his own pride that he says if he were to lose this argument he would rather lose to a man than a woman. Creon’s tragic flaw is his pride which is the beginning of the making of his tragic character. Creon had everything he could ever wish for at the beginning of the story.
He became the king of Thebes, he had a wife and a son, he had the people of Thebes looking up to him as a ruler he had it all. Throughout the story though, Creon slowly began to lose it all. Creon’s slow loss of his throne began when he made it illegal for anyone person to bury Polynieces. When Creon made this a law Antigone disobeyed it and became rebellious to Creon. Antigone’s rebellious ways began to get people think whether Creon’s new law is right or not. Everyone was taking Antigone’s side of the story meanwhile Creon lost some of his followers.
The next step that Creon took that made his empire fall was when he son committed suicide. Hameon’s suicide was only a small deal because Creon’s wife also died. In the end, Creon’s fortunes changed. One can say that you don’t know what you have until you lose it; to Creon this is a perfect case of peripetia. After realizing and hearing about the deaths of his son and wife Creon lets out emotional grief. “Nothing you say can touch me any more. My own blind heart has brought me from darkness to final darkness. ” (Page 806 Lines 94-96) Creon was so sad that he could not feel any pain.
Creon says that nothing can touch him; nothing can make him any sadder than he already is. He also says that his blind heart has taken him from darkness to complete darkness, by this he means that he was already sad when he found out the news of Hameon then found out about his wife also. Creon’s life took a complete change of routes and it all happened so sudden. Creon released his emotions and felt sorrow for himself. The last term in which Aristotle said made a true tragic character is if the character goes through anagnorisis. Creon goes through anagnorisis at the end of the story when he finally realizes that everything he did is wrong.
Creon realized that he made a mistake at the end of the story when he found out about his son and wife being dead. This incident opened Creon’s eyes and made him realize the mistakes in life that he had made. Creon’s self-realization is too late for him to be able to do anything about it the problems he had caused; Creon could not do anything and had to live his life on with the guilt still in his conscious. In conclusion a tragic character is a man of noble stature. He is not an ordinary man, but a man with outstanding quality and greatness about him.
This character causes his own downfall due to his own tragic flaw. Creon is of noble stature and he causes his own downfall due to his own tragic flaw therefore Creon is a true tragic character. Another important point is Aristotles book, “Poetics. ” In this book Aristotle describes the key points that make a character a true tragic character. In order to be a tragic character a character must go through, harmartia, peripetia, catharsis, and anagnorisis. All this is true in Creons character. According to all of these evidences Creon is a true tragic character.