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Creon As Tragic Hero

Since the plays inception, there has always existed a contention concerning the true hero of Sophocles Antigone. It is a widely held belief that Antigone must be the main character simply because she and the drama share name. This is, of course, a very logical assumption. Certainly Sophocles must have at least meant her to be viewed as the protagonist, else he would not have given her the plays title. Analytically speaking, however, Creon does seem to more categorically fit the appellation of Tragic Hero. There is no doubt as to the nature of the work, that being tragedy. Along with this genre comes certain established prerequisites, and Creon is the only character that satisfactorily fits them all.There are certain qualities that a character must posses in order to qualify as a tragic hero. Ideally, the subject is to be a person of high rank, so that they may have much to lose. (Most frequently a monarch is used.) Granted, Antigone is a member of the royal bloodline. But we must not forget that she is the daughter of incest, hardly a glamorous position to start with. In Oedipus Rex, Antigone was indirectly disgraced, while Creon was socially elevated by inheriting kingship from Oedipus. Also, Creons being king comparatively trumps Antigones lesser status of orphaned princess. While this in itself objectively proves nothing, it does at a minimum make Creon the more likely choice of protagonist.Another essential component of a tragic hero is that of the tragic flaw, the one attribute that causes the inevitable downfall of the character. A case could be made for Antigones hamartia being obduracy. She is called stubbornly wild in the play by both Creon This girl was an old hand at insolence (1280) and by the chorus leader: She hasnt learned to bend before adversity. (1279). Yet the judgment of detractors shouldnt be taken for absolute truth. Looking at her actions and personality impartially tells a bit of a different story...

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