Purge And Prophecy In Oedipus Rex

2227 Words9 Pages
Tustykbayeva Aisulu
Language, Experience, Culture
Purge and Prophecy
Sophocles’ play Oedipus is the most striking exemplar of classic drama that has endured thousands of years of reading and analyzing. It begins with an issue for the king Oedipus of Thebes to resolve. The problem is that there is a curse on the city and to lift it he is required to find the murderer of the previous king of Thebes – Laius. Oedipus, being an intelligent man and revealing traits of a great leader is utterly concerned with the whole situation and takes necessary steps to investigate the murder and find the murderer. Eventually, by the end of the play the characters and an audience assume that it is Oedipus himself, who killed Laius, who turned out to be Oedipus’ father. However, the question of the precise number of killers remains unaddressed by all the characters since the action of the play takes a rather dramatic turn. Taking into account the reason for the whole investigation of the play and how it is crucially important to find out who killed Laius, it is surprising that everyone merely assumes that it was Oedipus without verifying the issue of the number of the murders, while in this situation the precise number is the game changer for the protagonist. In this paper I argue that Oedipus assumes his tragic role not because he is factually guilty, but because it is necessary for him to be found guilty. First I establish the fact that the number of Laius’ murderers is unclear,
Open Document