oedipus - Anargirou 1 Peter Anargirou Dr. A. Karanika...

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Anargirou 1 Peter Anargirou Dr. A. Karanika Classic 160 26 February 2007 Oedipus as a Father and as a Son The Oedipus plays show very complex father-son relationships. In Oedipus the King , we see Oedipus as the true son of Laius and Jocasta, and even though they're not actually seen in the play, we see Oedipus as the apparent son of Polybus and Merope. In Oedipus at Colonus , his role changes. With his parents dead and the question of his parentage solved, we see him solely as father to his two sons, Polynices and Eteocles, and to his two daughters, Antigone and Ismene. It is interesting to see his change in character. While trying to be a good son, Oedipus inadvertently causes his father's death in Oedipus the King . After realizing what happened, he still wants what's best for his children. However, later in Oedipus at Colonus , we see him as a man who does not forgive his sons and who, in fact,and causes their deaths through prophecy and curse. Oedipus the King shows us, at least in the beginning, a heroic man – one who is a good father, a loving husband, a caring king, and a rescuer of the land. Oedipus wants to be a good son and do what is right. While still living in Corinth, a drunken man tells him that he is not the son of Polybus, king of Corinth. Oedipus goes to Delphi to consult the oracle of Apollo and learns that he will “couple with [his] mother” and “will bring a breed of children into the light no man can bear to see” ( Oedipus the King 873-5). Oedipus tells Jocasta that after hearing this prophecy, he “heard all that and ran” ( Oedipus the King 876). This was his attempt to be a good person and to avoid his fate. Of course, this is actually sealing his fate, because by avoiding his homeland, he meets Laius and kills him. However, Oedipus did not know that Laius was in fact his true father. He claims that Laius attempted to drive him from the road, and for that, he killed Laius and his men. From the play itself, it is unclear how society
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Anargirou 2 felt about killing for such reasons. People might feel it to be an unwarranted murder with the
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This note was uploaded on 02/21/2011 for the course HLI 113 taught by Professor Levin during the Fall '08 term at Stevens.

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oedipus - Anargirou 1 Peter Anargirou Dr. A. Karanika...

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