Topics: Meaning of life, Sophocles, Law Pages: 4 (768 words) Published: May 9, 2014
In Antigone, by Sophocles, two sisters, Ismene and Antigone, have two different views on what it means to be human. Ismene understand “being human” or “life” in a biological sense. She believes in continuing, by being a female, in continuing the family bloodline. Antigone however, understands “being human” in a sense of family honor and reputation. Both are important, but neither is right nor wrong. Creon, the ruler, has his own views on how to rule the city. He believes that he is in charge and everyone is to do as said with no questions.

Ismene’s view of life is biologically impacted. Although she loves her brother, Polyneices, it is against the law to bury him according to Creon. Creon having set law that anyone to touch the corpse to be stoned to death publically causes Ismene’s view of life to become a problem. With her and Antigone being the last two members alive within the family, they must stay alive to continue the family bloodline.

Now there are only the two of us, left behind,
And see how miserable our end shall be
If in the teeth of law we shall transgress
Against the sovereign’s decree and power.
You ought to realize we are only women,
Not meant in nature to fight against men.
(Antigone. 57-62)
Within this quote we realize not only is Ismene aware they are the only two left to fulfill the families obligation biologically to keep the bloodline alive, but we also see that she understands they both will be killed if going against the men of law and burying their brother.

Antigone view of being human is based on a sense of family honor, obligation, and reputation, Her brothers, being both killed, one has had the honor of being buried. Polyneices on the other hand, being left in the open for all to see, animals to feast on, is against all Antigone believes. Even though Creon has forbidden it, they must bury their brother. The shame that would behold them if left unburied is the worst thing Antigone believes....
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