Essay by EssaySwap ContributorHigh School, 12th grade February 2008

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Self Destruction In, The Theban Plays, Sophocles confronts the issue of fate and a character's ability to determine his/her future. The two plays I am focusing on are Oedipus The King and Antigone. Oedipus The King, is a tragedy depicting the main character, Oedipus' life long struggle with a prophecy claiming that he would kill his father and marry his mother. Antigone delineates a situation in which Antigone, the main character, hurls defiance at civil law, upheld by the king, Creon. Following this is a detailed display of the aftermath of his judgment toward her contempt for the law. Sophocles displays deep understanding of human reaction to adverse situations . Through these writings Sophocles expresses the belief that man is subject to the fatal flaw of putting emotion before reason and failing to act with rationality and open-mindedness.

When Oedipus was young he received a prophecy saying that he would kill his father and sleep with his mother.

He is terrified of this and estranges himself from his family in order to avoid it. However he later receives a prophecy in regard to the welfare of the city and it is again brought to his attention that he is living in sin. "I say that with those you love best you live in the foulest shame unconsciously and do not see where you are in calamity."(26) Oedipus is so stunned and frozen by fear of the prophecies that he attacks the prophet. "It has no strength for you because you are blind in mind and ears as well as in your eyes."(26) Ironically Oedipus is the one who is blind. He is blinded by fear, denial, and anger. He is incapable of listening to reason. This news if true would be impacting the entire city and especially Oedipus's family.