Essay on Oedipus Rex

1242 Words Nov 16th, 2015 5 Pages
Ms. J. Chitwood
English IV, Period 1
25 March 2014
Consequences of Knowledge and Truth Although the quest for knowledge plays a big role in Sophocles' play "Oedipus Rex,” translated by Dudley Fittz and Robert Fitzgerald, the consequences of wanting to know the truth led to an unforeseen exile. Though Oedipus was very dignified, his pursuit for knowledge and truth resulted in ruin as Oedipus uncovered his destiny, which he was better off not knowing. Because Oedipus was a king of great honor; his power prevented him from acknowledging the words of his own people and accepting the truth. Oedipus, once a man of power and wealth, lost all respect creating ramifications that he later endured.
The power of truth became the biggest
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He insists on hearing the truth, in the face of reluctant tellers who are scared for their lives, for his life, and for the future of Thebes” (Galens/ Spampinato). It is very noble of him to hear the truth for the sake of his people, however once the truth of his prophecy was proclaimed, his senile became a constant struggle to continue on to face his destiny by the problems proclaimed. The itching quest for enlightenment caused Oedipus to come face to face with the conclusion of his foreordination. Oedipus' outcome in searching for enlightenment suggests that knowledge is futile and limited in its ability to bring happiness to those who seek it. Though Oedipus quested for a greater knowledge, he was unprepared to hear the unknown knowledge of himself. He was always willing to broaden his wisdom, because that is a trait of a good leader. However, when Oedipus in approached with a new fact, it is for the worst of him which leads him to the downfall of his fate. Cendric H. Whitman acknowledges this in his critique on knowledge, “Oedipus destroys himself not by his folly but his keenly intelligent moral conscience”. Oedipus’ mind was one that was never fully satisfied with what he knew. He always reached for a more intellectual mind on anything and everything. But ultimately is it really worth knowing everything? In Oedipus’s case his broadened knowledge lead him to the unknown truths of what was left unsaid until upon his request which caused him to fall down the path

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