Sophocles: Fate And Free Will In Oedipus The King

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Sophocles was a famous tragedian playwright, who influenced the development of drama, during the time of birth of ancient Greek tragedy. During this time, there were many debates in relation to fate and free will, which deeply affected the ancient Greek society. In his play, Oedipus the King, Sophocles encourages the argument by portraying the situation through his characters. Throughout the play, we are often met with Oedipus’s trial to escape his fate as he tries to leads the city of Thebes out of despairing times. Oedipus has many achieving qualities, to which the ancient Greek were fond of, and he made himself to be a good ruler. However, in the end, he could not escape his fate, and the gods reigned above him, no matter how good of a ruler he was. Thus, Sophocles portrays the qualities of a leader, in a Greek perspective through Oedipus, while remaining to convey the gods to have supreme dominance. For one, Oedipus is displayed as the perfect example of a leading Athenian man, as he acts bravely and he is selfless. For instance, he is “clearly a man of action, swift and vigorous action” (Knox, 138), for this is shown as Oedipus “acted at once” (Sophocles, 162) to send Creon to the oracle at Delphi, in search of a solution to save the dying city of Thebes. Oedipus makes this prompt, brisk action to take the chance of saving his subjects from the plaque. In fact, it seems that Oedipus always makes a quick decision and action; hence, he has an Athenian quality of a leader.

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