Who Is Creon A Good Leader In Antigone

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In the tragedy Antigone by Sophocles, Creon is an authoritative and wise ruler. For example, when Creon addresses the Chorus, he says, "...and as for the man who sets private friendship above the public welfare -- I have no use for him either" (1.23-25). Clearly, Creon informs the Chorus that he has "no use" for anyone who practices favoritism, and he makes it clear that he expects each of his officers to act professionally and responsibly. Though this lack of tolerance may seem cruel, it only helps Creon to assert his authority over the others; but one could argue that this quality is necessary to maintain order in one's kingdom. Obviously, as stated by Creon earlier that, "no ruler can expect complete loyalty for his subjects until he has …show more content…

However, Creon is not only authoritative but also wise. An example of this is when he says, "...whoever shows by word and deed that he is on the side of the state -- he shall have my respect while he is living, and my reverence when he is dead" (1. 45-47). As the king of Thebes, Creon is a man whose respect is earned, not given. Creon explains to the Chorus that a man who is loyal to the state and the ruler earns his total respect. A clever ruler would compel his subjects to obey him and follow his rules without explicitly stating the consequences. By explaining respect is earned, Creon has slyly planted the idea that his officers should obey him in order to avoid a fate like that of Polyneices. His subjects and officers, eager to please as well as keep their souls from wandering endlessly for eternity, will comply with his demands and thus add to Creon's power of the people as well as help him maintain an organized and united city. Due to the sly manipulation of his subjects, Creon has avoided conflict while still convincing his subjects to follow his demands. Although Creon is arguably the most powerful man in Thebes, when he says, "This is my command, and you can see the wisdom behind it" (1.43), it shows that he has appealed to his subject's logical side and has invited them to see the logic and wisdom behind his

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