Masculinity Vs Femininity In Antigone

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1. I think the main thing that motivates Ismene here is loyalty to her sister. I believe she continues to think that her refusal of Antigone initially is still the right course but she wants to stand by her sister because family was considered to be one of the strongest bonds in that time period and that is proven with fact that Antigone went to such extents to bury her brother so that he may achieve peace in the afterlife. I think Antigone refuses Ismene because Antigone cares for her sister and does not want her to suffer, especially for a crime that she did not commit. In this instance, Antigone’s refusal of Ismene is a showcase of her care for Ismene in the same way that Ismene showed her care for Antigone in rushing to her side in front …show more content…
To me, one of the most significant conflicts in the play is the conflict of masculinity versus femininity. Antigone is generally viewed as the protagonist and Creon is generally viewed as the antagonist and the clashing of gender is pretty obvious. Antigone, a woman, is stepping outside of the restrictions that society has placed on her by disobeying Creon’s orders to not bury her brother. Creon, a man, is trying to rule his dominion in an authoritative manner and therefore has to put Antigone in her place when she decided to go against his decree. On face value, the main conflict is between a man and a woman, but to me, the most significant conflict is the clash in societal gender roles. A woman, especially in that society, has been habituated to feel subservient to any man and that their main role is to take care of men and a man in that society has been trained to feel dominant and superior when compared to a woman. It is due to these gender roles that the story’s main conflict comes into play in such that if society didn’t deem that a woman’s job was to take care of the man in life and death, then it would not be Antigone’s sole responsibility to bury her brother and in turn, disobey Creon’s orders. Similarly, if society didn’t train men to think that they are superior to woman, Creon could have listened and understood Antigone’s point of view and reasoning and in turn have avoided the great tragedy at the end. My opinion is that because society has beaten …show more content…
Patriarchy is defined as a system of society or government in which men hold the power and women are largely excluded from it. In other words, women are considered lesser than men and therefore are obedient to men. This idea of patriarchy is ever so present in Antigone, one example being from the text, and also something in the unit lecture, was when Creon said “no woman will rule me” on line 644. When Creon says this line he makes it known that he views women as lesser and weaker than any man and to think that a woman can hold power in any form is considered by Creon to be absurd and, in a way, scares him. Another example is when Creon says “if we must fall, better to fall to a real man and not be called worse than a woman.” Clearly, being called a woman in this instance is something of an insult and that the standard of being honorable and considered equal is to be that to a man, another prime example of how women were being brought down and made to be lesser. A third example is when Ismene explains her reasoning to not siding with Antigone saying, “We are only women, we cannot fight with men, Antigone!” This is an example of patriarchal standards instilled in the citizens of Thebes, especially in women. Ismene was trained to believe that women are lesser and weaker than men and that rule is what she sites to Antigone on why they should not go against Creon’s dictate. She basically says that they have no chance in succeeding because they are weak and that they

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