The Importance Of Hubris In Antigone

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Hubris is defined as excessive pride or self-confidence. It is not an uncommon characteristic of characters in Greek literature and plays an important role in the downfall of several protagonists. Characters who have hubris are stubborn and believe themselves as always right. Excessive pride makes people reject others ' advice which leads to making rash decisions. This can cause them to make mistakes in decisions or overestimating their own abilities. Acts of hubris usually lead to death or punishment. Individuals who act on their hubris are neglecting the wellbeing of the community and instead are focusing only on themselves.
In Antigone, Creon and Antigone clearly display their stubborn and prideful attitudes. Both are extremely confident
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Antigone is determined to bury Polynices even though an edict was passed stating that no one was to give the dead prince a proper burial. She whole heartedly believes that her decision to bury him is justified and she is above Creon’s law because she is doing it out of love. When Ismene begs her to give up and says that her plan is madness, Antigone states “No one will ever convict me for a traitor” (Sophocles 362). She chooses to defy the city in order to satisfy her personal goals. She proudly claims to know what justice is; what is right and what is wrong. It is this character flaw that leads to her death sentence and eventually, her suicide. Other characters have recognized her stubborn nature, yet Antigone fails to see the error in her ways. The leader of the chorus remarks that Antigone is like her father, Oedipus, unwilling to bend in the toughest situations (375). When caught by Creon, she stands …show more content…
It may be overlooked if the play is not read carefully, on the other hand it is very evident that hubris is Creon’s largest flaw. It can be seen in multiple instances based on his own actions and the words from other characters. Throughout the entire play, Creon does not take anyone else’s words seriously. He believes that as the king, his word is final which means he fails to even consider the fact that his decisions may be wrong. When the sentry suggests that “this could possibly be the work of gods”, Creon is quick to dismiss the idea that the gods would care about a traitor who attacked the city. He doesn’t think that the gods might consider him as a traitor too, for declaring an edict, one that violates the gods’ law, in the first place. Haemon approaches Creon in an attempt to persuade the King to pardon Antigone. He mentions the upset Thebans and insists that they should have a say but Creon does not care. The meeting clearly shows Creon’s dismissive attitude towards the citizens. The lines “And is Thebes about to tell me how to rule” and “The city is the king’s- that’s the law!” show what he truly cares about (383). The only thing on his mind is the power of the throne and not the city that it rules. Tiresias is the next to confront Creon on his edict. The prophet informs him that a plague has swept Thebes and the gods are ignoring the people and unwilling to

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