The Real Protagonist in Antigone
The Real protagonist of Antigen “My belt holds my pants up, but the belt loops hold the belt up. So which one’s the real hero? ” Mitch Heeders The quote by Mitch Heeders encompasses the great story of Antigen written by the Greek tragedy writer, Sophocles. Greek tradition defines the dramatic protagonist as one who plays the leading character, hero, or heroine. Stemming from this basic definition, classical Greek literature went on to add that the protagonist is the main character whom realizes his or her own faults and mistakes.
This variation of the definition has stumped many critics and has vided them over which character, Antigen or Croon, is best suited for the leading role. Although the play Is titled Antigen, I believe the actual protagonist In this story to be Croon. Antigen and Croon both have the right to be considered as the protagonist. They both fight for something which they believe strongly about. Antigen fights for the righteous burial of her brother and Croon fights for the compliance of laws which he mandates.
In Sophocles’ Antigen, Antigen fights for the burial of Policies due to her loyalty to her family, her brother and being the “unwritten laws of heaven” (377). Screen’s battle is not traditionally that of the hero, but he holds to his ethics. Croon portrays extreme pride and stubbornness in how he approaches life and In how he acts. Croon seems reluctant to indulge the wishes of Antigen, staying committed to his position. The title of the play may be Antigen’s name; however, Croon shows many characteristics of a protagonist.
When paired with the basic definition, Croon executes the role of protagonist when he recognizes his faults and tries to mend them. His intense pride keeps him from forfeiting the fight with Antigen until he sentences her to death. With this punishment, the gods make Croon aware that he made mistakes. The gods send Croon many messages through messengers like Terrifies. Croon used this information to recognize his errors, and he set about to right his wrongs. Croon is on his way to right his wrongs, but he has a terrible dilemma In which he must decide which road Is the best choice to take.
He must decide either to give in and lose to Antigen with horrible consequences or stand his ground and have his life be taken from him. He finally decides to end the fight with the will of the gods and start on a new road. Sophocles shows us that Croon is determined to take the path of righteousness as Croon states, “l must personally undo what I have done” (925-26). This path of righteousness Is definitely the path of a true protagonist. Croon takes three major steps in creating a new path in his life. The first step in changing his route was the sentence given to Antigen.
He first set the punishment to be stoning, but once he saw that the outlaw was Antigen he decided to change the punishment to being locked In a tomb. Terrifies, the seer, had come to talk to Croon about the decisions he had been asking. Terrifies told him that the gods were unhappy and this would send him towards a path of destruction. Eateries’ message imported the thought of the second change In Croon. Croon originally made a law forbidding any one citizen from burying the body of Policies, Antigen’ brother.
Croon was told by Telesales that leaving an open body was not the best idea due to the tales being a pollutant to the city and its citizens. This lead to the acceptance of the Policies’ burial. Croon took the last step in his Journey of turning around his actions. His final step was a great urn of events for the story, and this is why Sophocles called Antigen a tragedy. Croon decided that Antigen will not be punished for what she had done, and therefore shall be released from the tomb.
When he arrives at the tomb to free her, his efforts are ill-timed. As Croon enters the tomb he finds Antigen hanging by a rope, along with his son Hammond clinging to her side. Sophocles shows us that Hammond was so distraught by the sight of Antigen that he “drew his sword… And plunged it into his ribs” (1015-16). Attempting to fix his mistakes, Croon showed aspects oaf protagonist. He might not have made all of the right choices to have this story end happily, but he still showed a great deal of heroism.
Antigen and Croon both fulfill the basic definition of protagonist because the drama is centered on the actions taken by Antigen and her consequences which influence Screen’s actions, and because they both possess the stubborn characteristic of leading characters. When taking the second half of the definition of protagonist into consideration, Croon is still the more suitable candidate for the central character. He not only plays an important role in the plot, but he also realizes his mistakes and tries to fix them.
Unlike Croon, Antigen never recognizes her faults, and she fights Croon to her death, a quality that is sometimes found in the antagonist of a story. Based on these features, Croon is the unorthodox contender for protagonist.