Sight In Oedipus The King

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A person is able to physically see while being blind to the truth of who they are. One of the most prevalent motifs in Oedipus the King is the idea of sight vs. blindness. Sight is synonymous with ignorance, and blindness is synonymous with knowledge.This particular motif could be emphasizing many different themes, but one theme that applies to Oedipus is self-discovery. All throughout the Greek tragedy, Oedipus is meeting people and going through events to help him discover who he really is and all that he has done. Sophocles used the sight vs. blindness motif in Oedipus the King to emphasize the theme of self-discovery.
Tiresias played a major role in Oedipus’ self-discovery. He was physically bind, and yet he knew all things, including …show more content…

As Oedipus finally discovers who he is and what he has done, Sophocles reiterates the connection of sight with ignorance, and blindness with knowledge by having Oedipus blind himself. But before Oedipus blinds himself, he finally connects all the “puzzle pieces” of his life. He realizes that he had indeed killed Laius, who was his father, and married his mother. He soon goes into his house and finds Jocasta dead. Oedipus then removes the brooches from Jocasta’s clothing and stabs his eyes. “He tore the brooches-the gold chased brooches fastening her robe-away from her and lifting them up high dashed them on his own eyeballs” (Sophocles 474). By stabbing his eyes, Oedipus makes it clear that he has discovered who he is. Oedipus had always been a very proud king, and to stab his own eyes was very humiliating. “Oedipus’ relentless and self-ruining pursuit of truth is the mark of a noble mind; his gesture of self-blinding is an unforgettable compensatory act of humility” (Bloom 22). Being the very prideful person that Oedipus was, he would not have humiliated himself by stabbing his eyes unless he discovered how terrible his past was. Oedipus goes on to explain why he went through the pain of stabbing his eyes. “Why should I see whose vision showed me nothing sweet to see?” (Sophocles 476). He is saying that his vision was useless to him because he could not see the truth and was totally blind to himself. …show more content…

blindness motif to emphasize the theme of self-discovery. Sight vs. blindness is one of the most prevalent motifs in the Greek tragedy Oedipus the King. Sight is synonymous with ignorance, and blindness is synonymous with knowledge. Throughout the entire tragedy, Oedipus grows more and more aware of who he is, and that is reinforced through the mention of sight and blindness, especially since Tiresias was blind and all-knowing. The use of motifs to emphasize themes from the tragedy was executed masterfully by

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