Power In Sophocles Antigone

1023 Words 5 Pages
The nature of power is not only reflected in Sophocles’ play, Antigone, but also embodied by one of the main characters of the play, Creon. As newly anointed sovereign of the state of Thebes, Creon has many reasons to seek to establish himself as a powerful leader. Creon wants to maintain the peace throughout his recently war-ravaged country, ensuring that there is little resistance to his form of government. The main form of resistance to Creon revolves around the main conflict of the story. Antigone, Creon’s niece, refuses to allow her brother’s body to lay unburied in a field to rot as decreed by Creon. Antigone proceeds to bury her brother’s body, ignoring the pleas of Creon and her sister, Ismene, to allow the situation to pass without …show more content…
Creon’s laws are meant to be symbolic of the loyalty to the state that one is expected to maintain. This is evident, again, in his initial decree not to bury the body of Polyneices. The rule created by Creon is expected to be followed by all, including Antigone. As a result of Antigone’s dissent, the idea of this conflict between personal values and loyalty to the state is created. In other words, Sophocles’ main argument is furthered by Creon’s expectation that his laws be followed. Sophocles uses his character’s struggle for power as a plot device that is intended to create conflict and demonstrate the overall ideas that Sophocles wants the audience to consider. Furthermore, Haimon, Creon’s son, refuses to submit to the will of his father when Antigone is sent to prison. Haimon is quick to defend the actions of the woman that he is meant to marry, stating “it is not reason never to yield to reason,” when his father refuses to listen to his argument. Although a minor part of this story, the father and son conflict in this scene reflects Sophocles’ idea of questioning authority when it is wrong. In this scenario, Haimon is the son, and is meant to submit to the will of his father in this more traditional society. Sophocles uses Creon’s attempts to maintain fatherly control over his son as a plot device to promote his idea that our authorities may not always be correct in their reasoning. Moreover, it is important to note that Creon is unable to maintain this power over both his son and the state, reflecting the idea that authority is not

Related Documents