Pride in Sophocles' Antigone
Pride is a quality that all people possess in one way or another. Some people take pride in their appearance, worldly possessions, or position in society. The story of Antigone written by Sophocles has two characters who have a tragic flaw of pride. I will show how Creon’s pride of power leads to his destruction, and how Antigone’s pride makes her an honorable character who should be treated as a hero.
Creon is a man who has just become the king of Thebes and has a flaw of having too much pride. He can’t control the power of being over other people and he lets the power go to his head. “ I now possess the throne and all its powers. No, he must be left unburied, his corpse carrion for the birds and dogs to tear, an obscenity for the citizens to behold!”(1272) In getting his new powers Creon decides to make a decree that will not allow the brother of Antigone to be buried, and if someone does bury him then that person will be killed. This goes against the beliefs of most of the people in the town and many feel that it goes against what the gods would see as acceptable. A leader tries to suggest that it could be the work of the gods. “My king, ever since he began I’ve been debating in my mind, could this possibly be the work of the gods?”(1274) This again is a reference that the people are disgusted by what Creon has decreed. They feel like it is gross or disgusting to let a persons body have no burial rights and leave the remains to be against the elements of nature. I think that this decree is inhumane and think that Creon was just using his power to get revenge on Polynices for being against the enemy. Creon then shows that he has let the power go to his head by refusing advice of an elder. “Stop- before you make me choke with anger- the gods! You, you’re senile, must you be insane? To prove his final act of power Creon informs his son that the person who buried Polynices is his fiancé Antigone and that he will kill her to make an example of his power to all the people under his rule that he would not be disobeyed.
Creon’s son Haemon does not want his wife to be to be put to death and pleads with his father. “ I see my father offending justice wrong. That she’ll die but her death will kill another.”(1287) Haemon reveals to the his father that if he continues with killing his wife to be he will flee his presence and kill himself for his love Antigone. In the end Creon realizes that his pride has lead to the destruction of his life and his kingdom. “ I know it myself- I’m shaken, torn. It’s a dreadful...