Gender Roles In Sophocles 'Oedipus The King'

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Oedipus the King - Third body paragraph - REVERSAL OF ROLES
This subsequently reverses Oedipus’ roles that were previously established in the play.
The dramatic character change witnessed in Oedipus creates irony through the reversal of roles. Sophocles had previously established Oedipus to be a beloved king and a loyal husband. The discovery of his true identity has subsequently revealed Oedipus’ incestuous relationship, allowed him to gain insight, and cost him of his throne.

Point 1:

The plotline is foreshadowed in the prophecies about Oedipus’ incestuous relationship with his mother. His arrogance and ignorance had lead to him disregarding the gods and their prophecies, an unfortunate mistake that leads to his eventual banishment
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Although Tiresias may be blind, he is by no means powerless since he is the sole character that can see past the lies blinding Oedipus. This accentuates Oedipus’ blindness towards the truth and helps the audience fully grasp his personality, and in turn, his ignorance. The confrontation between king and prophet is a critical event that enhances irony in the play. Oedipus consults in Tiresias expecting a solution to rid the plague cast on the city, but he only provides answers that Oedipus doesn’t wish to hear. Instead of respectfully asking Tiresias to elaborate, Oedipus furiously seethed at the prophet: “You have no power or truth. You are blind, your ears and mind as well as eyes” (23). Oedipus mocks the blind prophet, but eventually becomes what he had laughed at: a man who no longer sees the world of lies surrounding him, only the truth. After Oedipus understands the underlying truth, he blinds himself; he has become like Tiresias, blind to the world yet can finally see his despicable fate. Tiresias merely told Oedipus the truth, but it was Oedipus’ own fixation on the literal meaning of blindness wrong that caused his eventual downfall. The prophet is able to see past the literal meaning for blindness, unlike Oedipus who is fixated on it. This allows the audience to also consider the two distinct meanings for the word. The paradox of blindness relies on the two definitions of…show more content…
After Creon had consulted in the blind prophet, Oedipus immediately believes that he was conspiring with Tiresias to steal the throne. Despite not having any credible evidence, Oedipus makes the rash and arrogant decision to accuse Creon of being a traitor who has his sight set on the throne. The revelation had taken Oedipus’ throne and power away from him, leaving Creon to steer the city back onto the right course. Creon has the whole kingdom’s fear and expectations to worry about, so when Oedipus attempts to clench onto the power he once had Creon warns him with: “Don’t try to be master in everything. What you once won and held did not stay with you all your life long” ( 83). As king, he was the helmsman who steered his ship, the city, on its course; now as an object of pity, he is no longer in control yet he desperately attempts to still have a say in town matters. He no longer steers his ship, for it is now Creon's duty. Oedipus had accused of Creon of wanting the throne, yet it was Oedipus’ own actions and decisions that have resulted in him losing the crown. Creon is the only one left to lead and reminds Oedipus that he can no longer hold onto his illusionary control. Oedipus begs for banishment, but Creon remains true to his role as the new King. Creon becomes everything Oedipus had previously been, the King of Thebes. This abrupt transition is painted in irony, since Oedipus was so

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