Star-Crossed Ignorants

Essay by Anonymous UserCollege, UndergraduateA-, January 1997

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Eng Comp II

Star-Crossed Ignorants

No matter what anyone tries, no matter what anyone does, no matter what anyone believes they have accomplished, they have not controlled fate. Fate is uncontrollable. Much like betting on a ³sure thing² and knowing in the back of your mind that there are infinite factors in the outcome--anything could happen. It's unfortunate that the people of Ancient Greece sanctioned the concept of fate. In the Era of Enlightenment the idea of God-controlled fate was finally challenged with the notion of self-fulfilled destiny; until then, men turned to prophets and oracles. In the play Oedipus, by Sophocles, there was a ongoing synergy between fate and knowledge that was constantly rejected. Oedipus, the main character, struggled to dominate his own destiny, but ironically fell back into his bizarre misfortune that was in the end, inevitable.

Misfortune, false realities, deception: all a result of Oedipus knowing too much and at the same time too little of his true lot in life.

Knowledge was what nurtured him into false pretenses. Knowledge was a false pretense. By knowing that his parents were out of harms way, namely his, he knew that his prophecy would not come true. He knew that as long as his father was still alive and he was married to a woman not even related to his mother, he would not bear the offspring that ³men would shudder to look upon.² It was the epitome of irony for Oedipus to know his fate, and try to avoid it with the ³knowledge² that he had obtained:

³My father was Polybus of Corinth, my mother the Dorian Merope, and I was held the foremost man in all that town until a thing happened--a thing to startle a...