Essay on The Tragedy Of Sophocles ' Oedipus Rex

1247 Words Oct 9th, 2015 5 Pages
Around 430 B.C, an Athenian dramatist and tragedian, Sophocles, wrote the play Oedipus Rex, capturing the complexity of human consciousness by pitting fate and freewill against one another. By do so, understanding the Oedipus myth and his hamartia became less daunting and more transparent to the audience. It is evident, however, that individual free will was the dominant factor that led to Oedipus’ hamartia and played a more active role in the creation of the myth itself.
Fate can be defined in more than one way, according to Sophocles; it had “terrible power. You cannot escape it by wealth or war. No fort will keep it out, no ships outrun it.” (Antigone, Sophocles.) Using this interpretation of fate, it is clear that Sophocles was implying to his audience that there was no way Oedipus could have escaped his destiny, no matter how far he ran, he would still end up fulfilling the oracle. For example, in the play, Oedipus has to deal with the famine that is ravaging the city of Thebes and by doing so, sends Creon to get help from the gods. "I will tell you what I heard from the god. Apollo commands us-- he was quite clear-- "Drive the corruption from the land, don’t harbor it any longer, past all cure, don’t nurse it in your soil-- root it out!"" (107-114). This was the first mentioning of the Oedipus myth, and although the audience was well aware of what Apollo was referring to when he stated, “drive the corruption from the land,” Oedipus did not. The audience knew that this…

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