1 March 2013
Oedipus’s Fateful Decisions
Throughout the play of Oedipus the King, Oedipus and other members of the play makes some decisions that ultimately decide Oedipus’s fate. Some of Oedipus’s decisions are a result from an oracle, but his personal decisions ultimately lead to his fall to death. His decisions of running away from his home kingdom, pushing the oracle to speak more, and searching for the shepherd that knew where Oedipus came from leads to Oedipus’s fate.
Before the play, the audience knows that when Oedipus was younger, an oracle said that Oedipus would kill his father and wed his mother. Naturally, this scared Oedipus so he ran away from his home kingdom of Corinth, where his mother and father lived, to prevent this prophecy from taking place. On his way to find another kingdom, he was stopped at some crossroads by a chariot, and out of anger, he killed everyone in it. This turned out to be devastating to Oedipus because little did he know that one of those passengers on the chariot was his real father. The oracle did have a part in Oedipus’s decision to leave Corinth because Oedipus only left to make sure the prophecy did not come true; otherwise, Oedipus would’ve just stayed in Corinth and nothing of the sort would have ever happened.
In Oedipus’s new kingdom of Thebes, there was a plague that was hurting the kingdom, so Oedipus searched for answers. Creon was told by Apollo that in order to be free of the plague, they must “Pay the killers back- whoever is responsible” (Sophocles 1430). This meant that they must find the killer of their dead king, Laius. Oedipus brought in an oracle to find out who had killed Laius. The oracle did not want to speak at first, but Oedipus was eager to find out who the murderer was. Oedipus pushed and pushed until finally the oracle cracked and told him that he was the man who killed king Laius. This sparked up chaos in Oedipus and made him ask others for more...