Oedipus the King by Sophocles Research Paper

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Oedipus the King by Sophocles

The play Oedipus the King is a story about a willingness to ignore the truth and the limits of free will. This is accomplished by focusing on the life of Oedipus and how this is influencing a host of events that are occurring. To fully understand these ideas require examining a number of areas to include: the reasons for Oedipus blinding himself, what he learns from his suffering, what the audience discovers and how blindness vs. sight is used in a symbolic way. Together, these different elements will underscore how the play is teaching everyone key ideas and the way they relate to a willingness to ignore the truth and the limits of free will. (Sophocles) ("The Oedipus Plays") (Ramfos)

Although Oedipus gives some reasons for blinding himself, can you think of some others?

The primary reasons why Oedipus is blinding himself are based upon a failure to see the truth throughout the course of his life and for unknowingly having children with his mother. In the case of failing to see the truth and having children with his mother, Oedipus is at the center of power struggle between Creon and himself. This is a taking place when he learns that he was not responsible for his father's murder. (Sophocles) ("The Oedipus Plays") (Ramfos)

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However, he is fearful about the other part of the prophecy coming true through having a sexual relationship unknowingly with her. Once he realizes that this is the reality of the situation, is the point when his mother hangs herself and he pulls out the pins from his clothing. This is when he will blind himself based upon the sense of self betrayal that he felt. (Ramfos)

Evidence of this can be seen in the passage that says, "People of Thebes, my countrymen, look on Oedipus. He solved the famous riddle with his brilliance, he rose to power, a man beyond all power. Who could behold his greatness without envy? Now what a black sea of terror has overwhelmed him. Now as we keep our watch and wait the final day, count no man happy till he dies, free of pain at last." (Sophocles)

Research Paper on Oedipus the King by Sophocles Assignment

These sources are illustrating how Oedipus failed to see the truth for what it really is. To address these insecurities he blinded himself as a form of punishment. This allowed him to become more understanding of the world through not being influenced by false perceptions. (Sophocles) ("The Oedipus Plays") (Ramfos)

What do you think Oedipus learns from his suffering?

What Oedipus learns from his suffering is that his blindness to the truth is what hurt his quality of life and ability to see things for what they really are. This taught him to be more understanding and have a sense of respect for others and everyone around him. When this happens, it will help him to grow as a person and see things more clearly. (Sophocles) ("The Oedipus Plays") (Ramfos)

Moreover, he understands that freewill has its limitations. This is occurring through him wanting to avoid the same fate as his father. Yet, when he is King, is the point when his fate and the actions that he has taken will come back to haunt him. This happens, with the other part of the prophecy being proven correct. (Sophocles) ("The Oedipus Plays") (Ramfos)

What does the audience learn?

The audience learns that the truth is strange teacher.… [END OF PREVIEW] . . . READ MORE

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