November 19, 2012
In Sophocles’ play, Antigone, one feels fear and sympathy for Creon. He is the strong king of Thebes who rules without a bias. He cannot change the actions of Antigone that lead to many deaths in his family. He is ruined by the effects of a family curse that he cannot control. Through multiple problems of which Creon has no control, one feels sympathy and fear for him.
Creon rules Thebes as a strong king who lays down the law and sticks to it. Creon sends out a harsh, but unbiased edict. He declares that Eteocles’s body will be honored with a burial, but Polynices will be left to rot. Creon prevents the people in Thebes to bury Polynices by saying that anyone who tries to bury him will be sentenced to death. This law may be harsh, but Polynices is a traitor who attacks his homeland. Creon makes no exceptions to the rule even when he realizes Antigone, his niece, tries to bury Polynices. It is easy for Creon to let Antigone get away with her crime, but he does what he thinks is right by starving Antigone. If he lets Antigone get away with burying her brother, it will make him seem weak, and the government corrupt. Creon is unaware of what his decisions do until the very end, when it is too late. Throughout the play, it is obvious that Creon is set up to fall, resulting in angst for his future and sympathy for his predicament.
Creon’s strong leadership cannot change the decisions Antigone makes. Once Antigone makes up her mind, she does not waver. Creon does not want the death of his son’s future wife, but still decides to starve Antigone to death. Antigone takes her fate upon herself by committing suicide. Her suicide causes major problems for Creon. Creon’s swift and just punishment of Antigone as any other citizen of Thebes, was the right decision. He makes the difficult but unbiased choice. Antigone’s pride is the cause for Creon’s tragic fall, and because this is not Creon’s fault, one sympathizes with his...