Oedipus The King And A Scandal In Bohemia Analysis

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In its most basic form, sight can be defined as the “perception of objects by use of the eyes.” When taken literally, sight is just that—physically seeing something with your eyes. While sight can indeed be taken literally, it can also encompass much more than simply “seeing” something. This distinction between the literal definition of sight and a deeper sense of sight can be found in the comparison between Sophocles’s Greek tragedy, Oedipus the King, and Sir Author Conan Doyle’s short story, “A Scandal in Bohemia.” Although these two classic works exhibit striking similarities because of their comparable emphases on sight and observation, upon further inspection, it is evident that this emphasis on sight is very different in each work, creating …show more content…
Their differences have resounding implications because they not only change the course each story takes, but also they speak to the broadness of the term “sight” and inspect the very simple act of seeing. After analyzing the use of sight in each work, it is clear that there is a very broad spectrum and each story allows the reader to think of sight in a different way. In Oedipus the King, sight is taken very literally in many senses. Not only does Oedipus take everything he sees at face value, but also he goes so far as to literally gouge his eyes out to “unsee” the horrors, which now surround him. For example, he asks “why should I see / whose vision showed me nothing sweet to see” (Sophocles 1334-1335). Here it is evident that physical sight is what has quite literally caused the demise of Oedipus. Sight is directly responsible for the path the story takes and the consequences each character faces. In comparison, in “A Scandal in Bohemia,” sight is taken in a bit of a less literal sense. While sight is naturally important to any detective work, it is not directly responsible for Holmes’ downfall. When Holmes is duped by Irene Adler, it is because of a combination of his hyper precision, miscalculations, and overconfidence. Despite Holmes technically “losing” the case, he does not feel the need to physically gouge his eyes out as a punishment, and therefore sight in this story takes on a different meaning. Just as physical sight dictates the course of Oedipus the King, Holmes’ over analyses dictate how the mystery unfolds. It is these differences that make each story unique and that have resounding implications in terms of the course each story

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