Antigone the Hero

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Category: English Composition

Date Submitted: 09/15/2011 02:34 PM

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Antigone the Hero?

Women are rarely portrayed as heroes, but the Sophocles makes a hero out of the character Antigone in the Greek play “Antigone”. The lead character of the play is Antigone, but what are the makings of a hero? It’s important that the hero be model or ideal. A hero must be judged by an audience to be a good and decent person, and in this play that is revealed through the Chorus, The hero must also have flaws; without it there would be no dramatic difficulty or tragic consequences. Antigone encompasses all three of these qualities, making a hero.

Antigone is an ideal woman. “Antigone is scrawny, sallow, withdrawn, and recalcitrant brat.” ( although, she may not be as beautiful physically as her sister Ismene, she shows her beauty in other ways. She’s very religious, kind and caring. She has an undying devotion to her family, and is very courageous.

An audience must judge a person’s characteristics, and view them to be a hero. Antigone must prove herself to be a good person, and by the standards of the Chorus, she does just that. She shows her undying devotion to her family when she refuses to let her brother Polyneices be dishonored by leaving his body unburied. Her brothers died fighting each other, and Eteocles, who fought on the side of Creon, was going to be buried with honors while Polyneices was left with no one to bury him. Ismene tries to warn Anitgone about the dangers of disobeying the law concerning the burial. But Antigone is persistent "I won’t insist, no, even if you should have a change of heart, I’d never welcome you in the labor, not with me. So, do as you like, whatever suits you best- I’ll bury him myself." (741) This act of devotion is filled with a lot of courage since Creon has ordered that the funeral, go on this way, and anyone that is found trying to bury the bodies, would be put to death by a public stoning. Sophocles puts this courage in comparison with a character like Ismene, who...