The Suffering of the Proud
Pride is a key to self-respect; however, when it goes to far, people forget that humility is a virtue too. In the play Antigone, pride plays a major role throughout, appearing as fatal flaws in both Antigone and Kreon, the main characters of Sophocles’s tragedy. For Antigone and Kreon, as soon as the stepped past the line of humility, they were doomed to fail.
For example, Kreon became so proud of himself he refused to listen to others warnings and assumes the gods are on his side. “But didn’t that girl do wrong?’ ‘The whole nation denies it.’ ‘Will the nation tell me what orders I can give?” (Kreon, Haimon, Kreon 881-3) this is a perfect example, because he refuses to listen to his son, and then, when presented with the fact that the whole nation thinks he is wrong, decides that he doesn’t care what the nation thinks. Throughout the play, his advisor, Koryphaios, repeatedly gives him gentle warnings, and Kreon claims he is getting old, ignores him, or refutes him with points that only emphasize his out-of-control pride, such as, “Men our age, learn from [Haimon] (Kreon 876). He also assumes that the gods will go along with whatever he says, “can you see the gods honoring criminals? Impossible” (Kreon 364-5). This kind of attitude is something that appears in almost every Greek myth, the thought that the gods will side with them no matter what, and it always ends up biting them in the rear.
Furthermore, Kreon holds his subjects in contempt, and feels that their opinions are a complete waste of his time. Kreon thinks there is nothing wrong with killing them if they displease him. He accuses the sentry who brings news of the burial, of being the culprit, and of...