Oedipus The Classical Greek Play Oedipus Rex Essay

758 Words Oct 13th, 2014 4 Pages
One cannot understand the dilemma that Oedipus is stuck in in the classical Greek play Oedipus Rex. Being stuck between his own interests and the interests of his polis, emphasized by his position as King of Thebes, causes a tragic realization and emphasis on the many values of the people of his time and culture.
The biggest issue Oedipus is faced with is his importance to his polis. With the polis being an essential part of Greek identity, Oedipus holds the issue of the ensuing plague as a high priority. This traces to the Greek importance of harmony and order for without these in the polis the Greek people are very uncomfortable and will go to many lengths to fix the issue and to gain eudemonia in their city-state. This, unfortunately, is Oedipus’s responsibility, as King, to fix the issue. That being said, it is best to then look at how much Oedipus is to blame for what his life eventually lead to on the fateful day that the reader steps into the play. For several reasons, Oedipus is not to blame for the eventual fulfillment of the tragic prophecy that he was born with. Many of the things that lead him down the figurative, and literal, road that determined his fate Oedipus did not have much, or any, control over.
The first of which is Oedipus’s simple question to the Queen of Corinth, “Are you my real mother?” His adoptive mother, acting out of pathos rather than logos or the preferable ethos, decided to lie to Oedipus and tell him that she was his mother. Knowing this,…

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