This website uses cookies to ensure you have the best experience. Learn more

The Real Identity Of Oedipus Essay

773 words - 4 pages

Prompt: How does Oedipus see himself? How do others perceive him? Explain how the author uses this juxtaposition to communicate theme?
In “Oedipus The King,” Sophocles uses a variety of themes, and one of them is Oedipus’ own self-discovery. On the beginning of the play, Oedipus is considered the hero, the person who would take the city of Thebes away from the plague. However, throughout the play, Oedipus and the citizens of Thebes discover his true identity, and he no longer is considered the hero.
On the beginning of the play, Oedipus describes himself to be a person that is willing to do anything to help his people (the people of Thebes). For instance, on the beginning of the play Oedipus says “Here I am, myself, world-famous Oedipus...You may count on me; I am ready to do anything to help...”(6). The theme of the play is Oedipus’s journey to self-discovery, this quote connects to theme by Oedipus, who describes himself to be a great force, a hero for the city; and so far seems to have done something to help the plague-stormed city. However, throughout the play, readers and Oedipus himself, learn that unknowingly, Oedipus was the person that brought the pain to the city of Thebes, by murdering the former beloved King Laius, his own father. First of all, once Oedipus learns that he himself unknowingly killed his father (previously King Laius), he begins to feel pity for himself and proposes that “death for the unholy man, the father-killer”(79), and “Will you consult Apollo about anyone as miserable as I”(79)? Which shows how bad he feels for bringing pain to the people of Thebes while he was trying to fix everything. He feels pity towards himself, and wants to die for doing something so appalling. As the story progresses, the theme of self-identification becomes more and more apparent since Oedipus did not know that he himself could do something that is so intolerable, specially to his own father. He then begins to wonder about his identity, and who he really is.
In the beginning of the play, the people of Thebes see Oedipus as god, and want his help to fight the plague called Sphinx; a plague that has been killing the...

Find Another Essay On The Real Identity of Oedipus

The Tragedy of Oedipus Essay

1541 words - 6 pages The Tragedy of Oedipus When there is the mention of a hero in literature, the image of a tall, strong man on a pure colored horse, with a sword drawn and the shield held up, crying out to his men the honor and good they will bring in defense of their homeland, may come to mind. This, though, is not the image Sophocles gives to Oedipus, yet Oedipus is considered a true hero. Even if he is not depicted as a great war hero, or one who does some

The Downfall of Oedipus Essay

631 words - 3 pages Oedipus Rex by Sophocles is regarded as a very highly studied Greek play. Even though it was written almost 2500 years ago, it is still widely studied by both students and scholars alike. Oedipus Rex has passed the test of time, because people today can still relate to the themes and feelings experienced by Oedipus in the play. One of the main themes is the downfall of Oedipus and what the cause of this downfall is. The main plot of Oedipus

The Downfall of Oedipus

780 words - 4 pages The word hamartia means a fatal flaw leading to the downfall of a tragic hero. Yet the cause of his downfall was not due to one flaw but to many flaws. Oedipus had great traits and qualities of a great king such as intelligence, pride and determination. These traits are also the main cause of his downfall. The traits that helped him also hurt him. Early in the poem there are signs that Oedipus is going to fail. When he becomes the king and his

The Theme of Oedipus Rex

913 words - 4 pages In Greek mythology, one of the major themes is the importance of fate and free will. The story of Oedipus Rex is a perfect example that shows this theme. The major theme explored in Oedipus Rex is that fate and free will are intertwined with the main character, Oedipus. Oedipus is not only fated to perform such detestable acts, but his infamous behavior (which leads him to commit these terrible acts) determines his fate. The crimes that he

Oedipus-The tragedy of tragedi

699 words - 3 pages The tragedy of tragedies We seek the truth in things because knowledge serves us. We also seek the truth because we believe it to go hand in hand with righteousness. Hence, man has sought to live in righteousness by seeking the truth in all things. However, Sophocles raises a moral dilemma in which a man, who religiously seeks the truth, falls victim to perhaps the greatest tragedy of all time. More specifically, Oedipus searches for the truth

The Character of Oedipus in Oedipus and The Infernal Machine

904 words - 4 pages . Furthermore, they believe that it these qualities that ultimately bring about his demise. In Seneca's tale, Tiresias tries to warn Oedipus that only bad will result from his need to know the identity of Laius's killer-"Avid your hung er for such knowledge now , but you will come to rue the things you know." (Sen. Oed. p. 22) Even when his horrible actions are discovered by all the other characters, Oedipus, oblivious to the truth, persists with the

The Admonitions of King Oedipus

1889 words - 8 pages The Admonitions of King Oedipus And straightway music and singing beguile the immortals. All the Muses together, voice answering heavenly voice, Hymn the undying gifts of the gods and the sufferings of men, Who, enduring so much at the hands of the gods everlasting, Live heedless

tragoed The Tragic Figure of Oedipus the King (Oedipus Rex)

945 words - 4 pages The Tragic Figure of Oedipus Rex      Sophocles is perhaps one of the greatest tragedians ever. Sophocles said that a man should never consider himself fortunate unless he can look back on his life and remember that life without pain. For Oedipus Rex, looking back is impossible to do without pain. This pain stems from his prideful life. Oedipus is aware that he alone is responsible for his actions. Oedipus freely chooses to pursue and

Oedipus the King - The Character Transformations of Oedipus

1349 words - 5 pages Oedipus the King - The Character Transformations of Oedipus Through the character of Oedipus, Sophocles shows the consequences of defying the divine order. Oedipus served Thebes as a great ruler, loved by his subjects; but, like most in the human race, he slipped through the cracks of perfection. Oedipus had many faults, but it was primarily the tragic flaw of hubris, arrogance from excessive pride, which doomed his existence

The Tragic Fall Of Oedipus in Oedipus the King

817 words - 3 pages Tragic Fall Of Oedipus Rex in Sophocles' Oedipus Rex The tragic fall of Oedipus in Sophocles play “Oedipus Rex” is both self-inflicted and result of events drawn from his own destiny. First off early on in Oedipus’ life his first deadly mistake towards succeeding his self-inflicted downfall was the murder of his father the former king. In a blind rage without any motive, he kills Liaus and his men at a rode crossing. Fate may have had led

The Crisis of Identity

1553 words - 6 pages Why is it that man needs to compare himself to others in order to define himself? Is man able to form a society where only the necessary connections between individuals are the most basic fundamentals of the human condition? The world we live in is vast with a web of social interconnections, and we can no longer just identify ourselves in simple terms. When one is born, he or she is not simply brought into a family identity, but along with that

Similar Essays

The Real Bengal: A Historical Discussion Of Identity

1500 words - 6 pages beyond religion. Instead, the national identity was linked to common linguistic and cultural practices This sort of ethno-linguistic based national identity is singular in South Asia. Bangladesh gained sovereignty because a religious connection to West Pakistan was not enough to constitute a union. However, India is characterized by separate states with individual cultural norms and languages or dialects. As such, Bangladesh could have easily been

Wal Mart: The Real Identity Essay

1305 words - 5 pages Wal-Mart’s identity is misperceived because of reasons that many people are unaware of. This misperception successfully masks the retailer’s real identity. These reasons include, misleading advertisement, false claims, biased employment, transitioning from the blue-collar customer target by incorporating an upscale inventory, having a majority of Chinese made inventory, and manipulating customers. The world's largest retailer is experiencing

Oedipus The King: The Hubris Of Oedipus

2521 words - 10 pages and in the end will be punished. Oedipus summons the blind prophet Tiresias to the palace to ask him to conjure the identity of the murderer. The blind prophet refuses to reveal what he knows and demands to leave. After much pleading from Oedipus, the annoyed prophet declares: "None of you understands! I'll never bring my grief to light--I will not speak of yours." (334) This angers Oedipus that he is not getting what he needs from the

Oedipus The King: The Innocence Of Oedipus

1457 words - 6 pages Sophocles' Oedipus Rex Is Innocent Because Oedipus knows nothing about the past of Thebes, he is not an assassin. Oedipus committed murder but unknowingly of who King Laius was. Oedipus' honor was his claim against the murder. Had it been the other way around and Oedipus had lost the battle, King Laius' alibi would have also been for reasons of honor: for reasons of royalty. Oedipus was royalty and knew it as well did King Laius. The main