What Is Oedipus’ Tragic Flaw?

Topics: Tiresias, Oedipus, Hubris Pages: 2 (401 words) Published: April 22, 2012
What is Oedipus’ tragic flaw?

Tragic flaw is a failing of character in a hero of a tragedy that brings about his downfall. Oedipus appears to have many flaws on the surface namely his selfish temperament, curiosity and of course his hubris or excessive pride.

Firstly, his superiority and projection of ego is proved in exposition, when Oedipus shows a paternalistic attitude towards his subjects by calling people ‘’children’’ about four times. Furthermore there is a repetition of ‘’I” in his speech by which he brags for his superiority and his choices and he also refers to the rest as sick-poor people. Secondly, tragic flaw or the excessive pride of Oedipus is proved in his dialogue with the blind prophet Teiresias. Teiresias tries to avoid telling Oedipus his destiny. Actually he begs him to let him go back home and to each one bear his own fate. Excessive pride doesn’t allow Oedipus to think logically and he starts insulting Teiresias by calling him a wicked man, by mocking with his blindness and accusing him by saying ‘’ if you had eyes, I’d say the crime was yours and yours alone’’. After the dialogue with Teiresias, Oedipus seeks for details about Teiresias prophesy and he has a dialogue with Kreon. During this dialogue he stills being blind from his ego and he start accusing Kreon for conspiracy against him in order to take his throne. Then he proves that he strongly believe in what he says by stating, that he would hold his tongue if there is no facts to go on. Also, in lines 110-115 he turns into dictator corrupted by his own power and he uses expressions like I must rule etc.

Another extra point in which Oedipus Hubris is proved occurs when Oedipus is being accused by the first man of chorus who says to him ‘’ let no fair ambition be denied’,’ which means that pride can be a good quality as it doesn’t cross the line of ethical behavior, but in this case first of chorus states that Oedipus’ pride is closely related with...
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