Women's Role In Antigone

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In the play Antigone, women play a very strong role in the happenings and structure of the city of Thebes. Ismene and Antigone, the two sisters in this play, are conflicted with the choice of going against the society and rules of the city, or following the rules and doing what is expected of them. In this play, we see the difference between Antigone and Ismene’s thoughts and actions, and why they do the things that they do.
This play was written in Ancient Greece during the 400s BC. During this time period, women were treated as objects and they felt as if they didn’t have much of a say in anything. One example of this is when the reader sees that Antigone has an arranged marriage with Haimon. “I want no wicked women for my sons” (Sophocles 786 176)!
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Ismene perceives herself as weak, as that is what the society has always told her to believe. However, Antigone doesn’t care what the society thinks about women and she is ready to go up against the law. Ismene even says, “We are only women, we cannot fight with men, Antigone” (Sophocles 774 47-48). Ismene, herself, believes that because they are only women they should just obey the orders of the men in power. Ismene isn’t quite sure of her place in society and she would rather be controlled by men, rather than revolting and having to die as a result of disobeying them. In contrast, though, Antigone forgets her role as a woman and goes against what the society tells her about herself. She believes that although women are looked down upon, they need to be strong and prove their role to the men in society. Antigone wants equality among men and women, and she is willing to say and do things that will make this possible for her in the future. By going against Creon’s orders, it shows us that she isn’t afraid of the inevitable power of men and this is her way of encouraging people to not be afraid as

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