Loyalty Conflicts between Family and State in Homer’s Odyssey, and Sophocles’ Oedipus the King and

3106 Words 13 Pages
Loyalty Conflicts between Family and State in Homer’s Odyssey, and Sophocles’ Oedipus the King and Antigone

Everyday we are faced with hundreds of decisions. Some of the decisions take very little time and are made without a second thought. Other decisions hold more at stake and can tear a person in two while trying to make the final decision. The basis of many of the hardest decisions is the conflict between family and state. The decision between pursuing a career and starting a family first is an example. Once a family is started, there are endless decisions about daycare, office meetings, and school activities to decide which will take priority. These decisions can become harder during a time of war. People are forced
…show more content…
Ryan did not have much time before deployment, and he and his fiancé had a huge decision to make on when to get married. There were benefits and comforts to getting married before he left, but there were also negatives, like not being able to have the perfect wedding they had envisioned. One week the decision was to be united in marriage at the court house, and the next week they had decided to wait. After volleying the marriage idea back and forth, they ultimately decided to wait until Ryan safely returned. Thus far, the couple is happy with the decision because Ryan is still safe, and hopefully will return safely in the summer of 2004.

True loyalty is being prepared to give a life for the cause. What and whom loyalty is given to has changed over the centuries. Loyalty was once given to the family and the government as one, because the two were one, then it progressed into loyalty to the government, or polis, and today everyone is loyal to his or her own beliefs. The separation of oikos and polis will be examined and the resulting loyalties will then be analyzed.

Decisions between oikos and polis were not always necessary throughout history because at one time each family was its own government. Society of the late eighth, or early seventh century B.C. did not have a strong distinction between family and the polis. Therefore, loyalty to one assembly was the same loyalty to the other. During this time

Related Documents