Oedipus The King

Powerful Essays
Suzelle Napoleon
Prof. Robinson
English 102 College Composition
August 8, 2011

What makes Oedipus the King of Tragedy? How did Oedipus bring about his own destruction? Or is he the victim of a greater force such as fate or the gods? How does pride affect his actions? How do you feel as you watch him fall?

Fate is a theme that is often occurring in Greek plays and tragedies in particular. From the beginning of Oedipus, the King, we know that Oedipus is destined to kill his father and marry with his mother. Oedipus discovers that his past is very different from what he had envisioned and how most “kings” were born and raised. Oedipus, being a true tragic hero starts his own downfall by pursuing his chase on finding out the identity of the late king’s killer. He himself does not know that he is the true killer and puts himself in a tough situation that leads him to his own demise. Oedipus has many flaws that hinder his situation which lead him to internal conflict and rejection with himself. Oedipus’ character flaws become apparent upon the arrival of Tiresias. Tiresias tries to keep away from telling Oedipus what he knows when he first arrives. Oedipus insists that Tiresias should tell him the identity of the killer but when Tiresias tells Oedipus that he is the killer, Oedipus accuses Tirerias of plotting against him. Oedipus does not know that the truth is better off left unsaid which leads him in a shocking revelation about himself and the past that he does not know of. He gets frustrated when Tiresias was not answering any of his questions and the only thing he could do was to get upset and start pointing fingers. Oedipus’ personality comes to light that he is quick-tempered and aggravated when things are not going his way. Tiresias responds to Oedipus by saying, “I pity you, flinging at me the very insults each man here will fling at you so soon.” Automatically we could assume that Oedipus will be a victim of public humiliation and shame that will be

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