Antigone: Conscience vs. Society

Pages: 2 (689 words) Published: October 23, 2013
Justin Hughes
October 23, 2013
Cause and Effect Essay
AP English
K. Grant
Conscience vs. Society
Characters in both of the plays must choose between following what society says is the right thing to do and following what they believe in their hearts to be the right thing to do. Often, choosing to follow the conscience is the more difficult road to walk. For one of the two plays, identify the difficult choices the characters make and analyze the effects that these choices have on the characters’ lives

Antigone is a daughter of the marriage between King Oedipus of Thebes and his mother Jocasta. She is the subject of a popular story in which she attempts to secure a burial for her brother Polynices, even though he is seen as a traitor to Thebes and the law forbids even mourning for him, punishable by death. The burial of Polynices takes place during Oedipus' reign in Thebes, before Oedipus marries Jocasta. Sophocles' tragedies Oedipus at Colonus and Antigone, it occurs in the years after Oedipus' banishment and death, and Antigone has to struggle against Creon. After Oedipus' death, it was decided that the two brothers, Eteocles and Polynices were to reign over Thebes’s taking turns. Eteocles, however, did not want to give away his power causing Polynices to leave Thebes to set up an army. In the fight against Thebes, the two brothers kill each other. After this event, Creon declares that, as punishment, Polynices' body must be left on the plain outside the city to rot and be eaten by animals. Eteocles, on the other hand had been buried as tradition warranted. Antigone determines this to be against the laws of the gods, and is determined to bury her brother regardless of Creon's law. She attempts to persuade her sister Ismene to join her, but fails. Antigone buries her brother by herself; eventually Creon's guards discover this and capture her. Antigone is brought before Creon, where she declares that she knew Creon's law but chose to break it, but she...
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