In Homer’s 8th century BC epic poem The Odyssey and Sophocles’ 3rd century play Antigone, the leaders Odysseus and Creon display both similar and different leadership qualities. Odysseus is a leader of a crew he’s taking back home from a journey, but has many unexpected encounters on the way back. Creon is the heir to Oedpius’ thrown, and is King of Thebes. Both are important, however Creon proves to be the better King, seeing as Odysseus’ crew dies. The qualities of both leaders are what in turn lead to their results.
Odysseus must lead his men back to Ithaca. Along the way they stop at an island where all his men are enchanted by fruits. He must do all he can to get them to return to the ship. In another encounter Odysseus’ dead crew member’s soul comes back and talks to Odysseus. He asks him to give his body a proper burial. Odysseus does this proving that he is not only loyal to his crew, but to his word as well. Odysseus however learns of a prophecy, one, which tells that if, his men eat the cattle on the island of Helios they will die. He cannot prevent his men from eating these cattle and they all suffer for their actions. They all die, and Odysseus fails as a leader.
Creon’s takes an interesting approach to his leadership. He is stubborn and compassionate, hot and cold. Creon vows to do everything for the people, and anybody who breaks the law breaks his heart. Creon also makes numerous threats to the criminal who would dare to burry the betraying brother. But when he discovers that his own niece Antigone, his own flesh and blood, is the one defiling the law, he cannot stand it. His whole world starts to deteriorate and he cannot stop it before its too late.
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