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Sophocles’ Antigone 1 January 31, 2008. 2 Agenda Background –Play-facts, “Theban Cycle,” Politics, etc. Class Discussion –Cleon versus Antigone Gender.

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Presentation on theme: "Sophocles’ Antigone 1 January 31, 2008. 2 Agenda Background –Play-facts, “Theban Cycle,” Politics, etc. Class Discussion –Cleon versus Antigone Gender."— Presentation transcript:

1 Sophocles’ Antigone 1 January 31, 2008

2 2 Agenda Background –Play-facts, “Theban Cycle,” Politics, etc. Class Discussion –Cleon versus Antigone Gender in Antigone

3 3 Background Play-facts, “Theban Cycle,” Politics, etc.

4 4 Play Facts Sophocles –ca. 496-ca. 406 BCE –first victory 468 “Theban Plays” –Dates »Antigone ca. 441 »Oedipus the King ca. 429 »Oedipus at Colonus ca. 406 (“Theban Plays,” cont.) –Story order »Oedipus the King »Oedipus at Colonus »Antigone

5 5 Characters Antigone Ismene Chorus of Theban citizens “Leader” = chorus leader –koruphaios Sentry Haemon Tiresias Messenger Eurydice

6 Myth Background: House of Thebes Labdacus OedipusJocasta PolynicesEteoclesIsmeneAntigone Menoeceus LaiusJocastaCreon Eurydice Megareus Haemon

7 7 Political Background, Themes “Radical” democracy (Athens, BCE) “People power” (dēmos, kratos) –sovereign assembly –assembly = citizenry –democratic council (agenda- setting body) Paid political service Election (mostly) by lottery Egalitarianism Ethnocentrism Sexism Tyranny Monarchial rule Arbitrary rule Possessive rule Illegitimate rule Protective rule

8 8 Play Analysis (nums. refer to Penguin pages) Prologue (59 ff.) Antigone, Ismene (burial) Parodos (choral entry ode, 65 f.) victory song 1st episode Creon, Sentry (Polynices’ burial) 1st stasimon (choral ode, 76 f.) “Many the wonders …” 2nd episode Sentry, Creon; Creon, Antigone, Ismene (Creon-Antigone agōn) 2nd stasimon (91 f.) “Blest they who escape misfortune” 3rd episode (92 ff.) Creon, Haemon (agōn) 3rd stasimon (101) madness of erōs 4th episode (101 ff.) Choral dialogue (kommos) w/ Antigone (bride of death); Antigone, Creon 4th stasimon (108 f.) myth parallels to Antigone 5th episode (110 ff.) Tiresias, Creon (prophecy, warning) Hyporchema (choral ode, 118 f.) Dionysus save the day! Exodos (119 ff.) Messenger, Eurydice; Choral dialogue (kommos) w/ Creon

9 9 Class Discussion Cleon versus Antigone

10 10 Conflict: Creon versus Antigone Creon bit arbitrary if city- oriented non-compromising stubborn a contest under pressure concrete thinker Antigone pro-family won’t compromise NOT a contest under pressure abstract thinker love

11 11 Gender in Antigone

12 12 Sophocles’ Antigone: 2 Readings Hegel’s… Antigone –divine law –private sphere versus Creon –human law –public sphere Butler’s… Incest as –interrogation of gender Antigone as –proto-feminist Antigone’s Claim (Butler’s book) shows “how a culture of normative heterosexuality obstructs our capacity to see what sexual freedom and political agency could be” (book blurb)


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