Antigone and the Greek Polis

Essay by Jskillz72University, Bachelor'sA+, December 2003

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The story of Antigone tells a lot about the Greek polis and the way people lived within it. We can learn such things as the way women were treated by men and by the society. Political debates and the struggles for political power. The way in which religion affected the people, their society and their culture. Also the importance of and the role of tradition in the Greek polis societies.

The women in the Greek polis society were not mistreated, abused but they did not have full rights as was available to their male counter parts. They were obviously not thought of as being equal to men as, Creon, from Antigone shows this as he insulted his own son for defending a woman when he said, "I'll hear no chatter from a woman's plaything." Staying home and raising he children was also a part of a woman's role in the polis society, this was told to Antigone several times by her sister to try to coax her to stop her fighting.

Politics was no place for a woman in ancient Greece as was apparent in, Antigone when Antigone tried to fight a political fight against Creon but with no backing until Haemon stepped in.

Politics in Greece were thought of to be for men only. This was why sons become Kings after their fathers died. As was the case when, Eteocles and, Polyneices, fought to death for throne after their fathers death. Even after they were both slain it was their male cousin who assumed the throne. This shows how the government in Greece was at a time very patriarchal and women such as Antigone and her sister Ismene were not taken seriously by the king.

At the end of Greek power there were no great leaders as there had...