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The Hamartia Of Successful Leaders Of The Past

1938 words - 8 pages

When looking at successful leaders of the past, each one had a hamartia, or a flaw, that destroyed their rule. For example, Hosni Mubarak of Egypt was one of the greatest rulers Egypt has ever had, but too much power lead to prison. Being in power for 30 years, Hosni Mubarak had an economic growth of 5-6% for the last 5 years, he kept peace for 30 years, he had no religious elements in politics, he gave freedom to leave and enter Egypt, he gave freedom to transfer money in and out of Egypt and had good relations with most of the world. After 30 years in power, Hosni Mubarak was taken out of rule and was put in jail for a court trial. When millions of Egyptians found out that he had sole 70 billion dollars, they were devastated. Many of them questioned how such a loyal and worthy leader become so corrupt, but that was his major flaw. He stole from his people and at in end, ended up in jail. Such character flaws have plagued societies from the beginning of time, dating back to the Ancient Greeks. In Sophocles’ play Polyneices and Etocles were two brothers who started off the play in war, and both ended up dying. When Creon, the king of Thebes, saw this, he ordered that Eteocles be buried but for Polyneices to be left for the dogs and wild animals to eat. Creon reasoned that Eteocles fought for his country, but Polyneices was a traitor. When Antigone, the sister of both brothers, heard the news, she was angry and frustrated. So she went and buried her brother, going against Creon’s law. Even though Antigone is Creon’s niece and his son’s wife, he sentenced her to death for going against his rule. Even though the people of Thebes thought she was right, he thought otherwise, which ended up hurting him. Thus, Creon’s pride leads to his ruin.
All Greek plays end in a catastrophe in which the hero dies or suffers complete ruins. In the story Antigone, Antigone, the main character, dies from the hubris of Creon. Creon felt that his laws and rules were above all and should be obeyed. As a result of the excessive pride Creon possessed, many lives were taken. Due to excessive pride, “[Creon’s] own blind heart has brought [him]/ From darkness to final darkness./”(Sophocles, Exodos, line 87-98) Creon finally releases what his hamartia has brought upon his family and citizens. When referring to the blinded heart, he is referring back to himself. Blind in the quote implies how prideful and ignorant Creon was of himself. Creon sees that he did not take time to look at other peoples thoughts, which has brought him to the death of his own son. Furthermore, by saying that he has went from a state of darkness to final darkness shows how pride took him into a state of despair. In Creon’s case, the first stage of darkness was when he blocked everyone out of the view. He only thought about himself and never of others. Sparingly, when something it is dark, it has only one color, yet when Creon states a stage of darkness, it can be implied that his dark means only...

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