Theme Of Death In Antigone

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Antigone has the difficulty of deciding whether burying her brother is worth the risk of death. It all started when Oedipus and Jocasta both committed suicide because they realized that Jocasta was Oedipus’ mom. Since Oedipus was the leader of Thebes, they had to appoint a new leader. Usually, the father’s son would be the one to take over the city according to the Greek culture. However, Oedipus has two sons: Polynices and Eteocles. They decided that they would split off leading the town. Eteocles ruled the town for the first year and then Polynices ruled the second year. After the end of Polynices’ time leading, he did not want to give his power up. This made the city go into a huge turmoil. Eteocles and Polynices both died in the …show more content…
At the beginning of the play, Antigone wanted her sister, Ismene, to help honor her brother by burying him. Ismene was reluctant, however, because Creon made it clear that he did not want Polynices to be buried as a result of his wrongdoings. Ismene made it very clear that she would rather follow the law rather than try to honor her brother. This was the turning point when Antigone turned this mission into something only she could do. She stated to Ismene, “You would not be welcome to help me now, even if you wanted to. (71-73) She would go on to say, “Leave me alone with my stupidity to face this dread unknown…” “Anything is better than die a coward!” (96-99). Now that the only remaining family member of Antigone’s does not even want to help honor her brother, she realizes nobody is going to help her and she is now on her own. At the beginning of the book, Antigone thought for sure that Ismene would try to help her. Once she realizes that she is not getting any help from her, the way she communicates with Ismene changes. For example, she would say, “Ismene, my dear, my mother’s child” (1). This is a very calm, loving sentence from a sister to a sister. However, she changes into a more fiery persona when she calls out Ismene for being a coward for not trying to help her. This shows that Antigone was very upset with Ismene and realized that if Ismene wasn’t going to help her, nobody was. This new ego that Antigone shows is also very open to letting everyone know she was the one that did this mission by herself. When Ismene says that she will try to keep a secret Antigone responds by saying, “Oh no, Denounce me! (86). She also is very direct with Creon when she is asked if she defied him. She states, “Oh. I admit it. I make no denial” (430-431). Instead of trying to sneak around the situation, Antigone wants everyone in

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