A Reasonable Voice
In Sophocles’ Antigone, Haemon, a secondary character, proves to be a more significant piece of the play than expected. Although he is believed to be unimportant and useless, his role has a great influence on the outcome of the play. Most importantly, in desperate times he provides reasonable solutions to Creon’s unreasonable actions. In the end, Haemon is proven to be right. Therefore, contrary to what he appears, Haemon’s true nature is to be the voice of reason.
Haemon’s role is one that comes off as the annoying overly obedient son. For these reasons he is believed to be unimportant in the play. Although he is engaged to the accused criminal he speaks to his father calmly. He states “it is [Creon’s] interests [he has] at heart”(57), and continuously flatters him while presenting his arguments. His flattery distracts the reader from the true issues causing them to focus on his unimportance. Additionally, Haemon seems to be reluctant to voice his true opinion when speaking to his father. His apprehensiveness leads him to start glorifying Creon by saying he would “be the last person to deny what [Creon says] is true”(49). This way, he is protecting himself by feeding Creon’s ego, thus hiding the true meaning of his words. Most importantly, Haemon’s conversation with his father becomes useless because Creon remains unchanged. Since the problem has not been resolved, Haemon’s opinion may come off as worthless to the reader. These events lead them to believe Haemon’s character has no purpose when really his reasoning is more useful than anticipated.
A voice of reason is sometimes so reasonable that people don’t take notice of its presence. In Haemon’s case, he is the voice of reason because he provides Creon with reasonable solutions to his unreasonable actions. He “[tries] to show [that Creon] is being perverse”(52) about Antigone’s situation and fails due to his father’s stubbornness. This statement shows Haemon’s justified attempt at...
Please join StudyMode to read the full document