Antigone is a play about a woman who disobeyed the King’s law to not bury her brother. The play was written by a well-known Greek tragedian, Sophocles, in 442 B.C. E. The city this amazing play took place was the city of Thebes. The core characters presented in the play are Antigone, Ismene, Creon, and Haemon. The primary focus was centered on Antigone and the repercussion she faces after disobeying the King’s orders. In the opening, the author announced Antigone and her sister, Ismene, and their argument about their dead brother. The argument elaborates Antigone wanting to bury her brother and Ismene tries to persuade her to follow the King’s orders.
Kreon was a General during the First Peloponnesian War and is the representation of power. He was handed the throne and heralded as the king of Thebes. However, he was confused because political power and military power are two completely different things. Political power rises from the presence of a force that exerts dominance. Kreon was a king, but he thinks like a soldier and, to establish his power, he wants to use Antigone’s death as an example to others who might disobey his law.
Antigone is a strong-minded character who is not scared to defend her beliefs. After learning that Creon has denied her brother of a proper funeral, she uses her free will to decide that she must lay her brother to rest, as she strongly believes that her brother should be respectfully honored as the other fallen soldiers. Antigone did not want to listen to her sister’s reasoning. Ismene encourages her to follow the king’s order and prevent her from getting killed for disobeying king Creon’s law.
Antigone replies that she, “shall suffer nothing as dreadful as an ignoble death” (Sophocles). She appears to be ready to die for her belief throughout the play because she knew that dishonoring Creon’s rule on burying her brother was the thing to do because of the unalterable laws of the gods and our moralities are higher than the unreasonable laws of man. Antigone knows the Gods demand proper funerals for the fallen and would rather be punished by carrying out their demands than to live knowing she went against their beliefs.
Ismene, however, feels very bothered about Antigone’s plan to disobey Creon. She reminds her sister (Antigone) that they are the only family members left and begs with her not to disobey King Creon’s order. Antigone chooses not to listen to her sister’s trying to interrupt her plans and ignored the consequences she may be facing for breaking the king’s law, although she knows the idea of her death evidently frighten her sister. Later in the play, the author explains Ismene has a change of heart and wanted to die with her sister in order to honor the dead as well. She even acknowledges this to Creon, but Antigone rejects her idea of her being a part of the plan to break the law and she should not be punished because she was innocent. Antigone had good motives for her actions.
In the play, Antigone reveals she did obey the rules of her gods, which were that any dead body must be given a proper funeral. She explains she wouldn’t let Creon’s laws go against her morals (Sophocles). Antigone chooses to share her love, not her hate (Sophocles). She wouldn’t be able to live with herself knowing her brother couldn’t be honored and buried properly because of the King’s unreasonable law.
In conclusion, I realize the king did not possess any leadership skills to lead Thebes. He was a great General but not a King. As I was reading, I saw myself asking this question over and over again. Why punish somebody who stood up for what they believed in? Throughout the play, Antigone was someone that values family, so bringing homage to the family was very important to Antigone (Sophocles).