“Oedipus the King” is an enigmatic tragedy account where fate makes the main character to kill his father and marry his mother unknowingly. Sophocles borrows heavily from Aristotles’ tragedy ideas to make a tragic hero with a noble personality who is made to fall by mere errors in life caused by fate. The greatness of the main character Oedipus, a king is shown from his perfect and ideal traits from the beginning of the plot. His indulgence in matters about the plague and solving riddles that saves a city makes him to meet his foreseen wrath. The clairvoyance in the text tells of the misfortunes that will befall Oedipus, this makes any reader to complete the reading with much enthusiasm. The element of tragedy is well stipulated in the plot of the play by making Oedipus the main character that is being stalked by fate and eventually becomes a victim.
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Tragedy is the main element in “Oedipus” is a very interesting conflict that evokes pity and fear in any reader. Emotions about the killing of his father and marrying his own mother make the audience of this piece of art to see at a glance the power of fate on the destiny of a human being. This theme is a real depiction of our day-to-day society where societies are met with people with clairvoyance ability; that in turn makes the noble personalities to be victims of tragedy. For example, the plot of the story begins when the parents of Oedipus who consult the Oracle of Apollo about having a child. The conditions were given but turned to be harsh. The strategy adopted by the parents of Oedipus to safeguard his infancy and life was bestowed upon the King of Corinth. A few years later after he has accomplished a lot of things in life and earned a noble status he meets the strange twist of fate. A close analysis of the life of Oedipus gives an account of how fate can stalk someone no matter the accomplishment he has done in life. For example, he becomes a respected king of Thebes (Robert, 1984). This position gives him the chance to have children with a loving wife. His fame is well spread across seas and lands. His life is most sought after by many people. This means a well accomplished life with all one may want to achieve in life.
Fate twists after a long wait, when the priests from a country called Thebes seek guidance from him concerning a plague that is claiming a lot of people’s lives. With apt wit he gives solution to Sphinx’s riddle. The writer mixes myth with lives of people to drive home the point about predestination and tragic happenings. Well, at the end of this story a reader finds several features that make tragedy real and salient in our lives. For example, one is able to see the need for a family. Desperate situations make parents of Oedipus to seek help from a clairvoyant. The people seek guidance and help from Oedipus because of the wrath of a plague that was about to finish all the people. But the central theme about the twist of fate is being built in the plot and eventually giving a tragic end of the main character; hence evokes pity and emotions to the reader (Booth, 2006). These narrations make the play to depict the element of tragedy. Therefore, the element of tragedy is well stipulated in the plot of the play by making Oedipus the main character that is being stalked by fate and eventually becomes a victim.
Booth, A., Hunter, P., & Mays, K. (2006). The Norton Introduction to Literature. New York, NY: Harper Collins.
Robert, F. (1984). The Three Theban Plays : Antigone, Oedipus The King, Oedipus At Colonus. New York, NY: Penguin Books.