Antigone - Pride and Conflict of Law
Sophocles' Antigone, in its later phases is no longer about the conflict of law; It is about stubbornness and self will, about the sin of refusing to listen; about a man who has never been told.
Conflict of law, presents the initial disturbance within Thebes. Creon, King of Thebes, refuses to bury the body of Polynices, for in his eyes Polynices is 'his country's enemy' Antigone pg.131. Thus, despite breaking the laws of the gods, Creon holds his power higher than that of God and heavens and enforces his law. As the story follows, Sophocles expands on the ignorance presented by Creon and Antigone, and it is also found that it is ...view middle of the document...
Following the unlawful burial of Polynices, Antigone openly admits to Creon the knowledge of the following punishment by carrying out such a defying act. "I knew it naturally, It was plain enough." Antigone pg.138. With the intention of gratifying the laws of the gods, Antigone holds neither guilt nor regret as she feels that she has brought justice to the eternal rest of her brother. Antigone rejects her life in a deeply heroic yet tragic stand, certain that this is all that she can do to prove the intensity of her self-righteousness.
Creon's judgment over the living and dead infuriates Antigone, and on many occasion we encounter their conflicts, which are based not only on their differences- but also on many of their similarities.
In an almost reflective similarity to Antigone, Creon advances to extreme measures in order to fulfill his need to repair and strengthen his territory. "He was concerned with re-establishing the social order which the shocking news of Jocasta's and Oedipus's incest had fractured, and which the civil war between their sons had almost ruined." Charles Paul Segal 'Conflicts of Antigone' pg. 46. Creon prides himself to be a powerful dictator and leader within the Theban society. He rules his city with the contention that his law is the only law. As opposed to Antigone's stubbornness, Creon's is far more illogical and dominatingly based. Indeed, Sophocles demonstrates the 'sin of refusing to listen, and about a man who has never been told' supremely through Creon's character.
On many occasion Creon speaks of honor and goodness overruling evil, 'I am determined, that never, If I can help it, Shall evil triumph over good' Antigone pg.131-132. Yet he ceases to identify the hypocritical aspect of his decisions, to defy the laws of God, in order to pursue his own beliefs of mankind.