Honors Language Arts
Landow 3/4th hour
27 February, 2012
Discovering and Suffering: Why Oedipus is The Most Tragic
Fate is the develpment of events outside a person's control, regarded as determined by a supernatural power. In Oedipus's fight against fate, he expierenced all aspects an Aristostlian Tragic Hero, but above all suffering and discovery. Therefore, Oedipus is far more tragic than Antigone and Creon; for his suffering exceeds greatly beyond theirs, as does his discovery.
"How terrible-to see the truth when the truth is only pain to him who sees!" (line 360). Tiresias, being blind, shuns a whole new light on this play. The paradoxical world of light and dark creates the idea that despite being able to see, Oedipus cannot in fact see what is unfolding around him. The horrible fate summoned upon him, is like a cloud of darkness that is"inescapable, unspeakable, unstoppable, and driven by cruel winds" (line 1514). It's unlike anything anyone has delt with before, a true synonom of suffering, like an "ungodly pollution" (line 353). The unimaginable feeling of suffer is hard to grasp, but due to Oedipus's hamartia: the drive to steer away from his fate, for he loves his parents to much to watch them go through his fate, he falls, because he in fact only gets closer to his fate when trying to avoid it. "([Oedipus] knew the famous riddles. He was a mighty king, he was the envy of everyone who say how lucky he'd been. Now he's struck a wave of terrible ruin. While you're alive, you must keep looking to your final day, and don't be happy till you pass life's boundary without suffering grief" this quote (line 1524) is a very accurate description of Oedipus, a smart man, who in fact was just to blind to realize what he was doing; so he suffered.
The discovery is one of the most interesting and exciting aspects of a tragic hero, to see how they react to what is going on, and for Oedipus it was just that. "I shudder to look at you" (line 822),...