Antegone by Sophocles is a tragedy which states the problem of relationships between relatives, family traditions, and the duty of a governor. It may be really complicated to combine the responsibilities of those two social characters as being a governor may mean to betray some family traditions that leads to betrayal of government responsibilities and obligations incase family is supported. The play under consideration clearly identifies this problem having presented a specific example.
The main points which should be discussed in the paper are as follows, no matter which position one occupies, family traditions must be followed as it is forever while the position in the government may be temporary. People should praise their roots and do not forget about their human qualities while running the country. Antegone by Sophocles is a good example when a governor has forgotten his roots.
Polyneices had to be given burial rituals in accordance with the family tradition. If the burial ceremony was followed, the situation would be absolutely different and would not lead to those disasters. Additionally, those who buried Polyneices in defiance of state should not be punished as well as Creon does not have the right to be entitled to the throne.
Polyneices should have been buried in accordance with the specific rituals inherent to the family tradition. Family is a sacred place, no one can destroy it or try to question its peculiarity. Creon has tried to put the priorities of the government under the priorities of the family. This is wrong.
Who are always near? Who will never betray? Who will do all possible to protect in case of problems? There is only one correct answer – family! Only the family will help in complicated situations and the failure to follow the family tradition means betrayal. This is exactly what Creon did by refusing to meet the family tradition and bury Polyneices in accordance wit the rules. Traditions which are followed from generation to generation bear great significance.
The connection with all the relatives, spiritual link to generations is felt via traditions and rude violation of the latter is inadmissible. It is impossible to ignore the reasons why Creon refused to bury Polyneices in accordance with particular family traditions, but he had a choice. People always have the right to choose what is more important for them. Creon’s decision cannot be justified as well as it cannot be explained by means of reasonable arguments.
Family should be at the first place for everyone and no matter which surrounding conditions make a person to change his/her attitude strong and self-assured people will never do that. They will remain faithful to their families, to people who spent much time on their up bringing. Thus, it may be stated that Creon’s decision as a betrayal and it is inadmissible to judge those who have decided to correct that terrible mistake.
Those who buried Polyneices in defiance of state should not be punished as they tried to follow the call of their heart and correct the biggest mistake in Creon’s life. As it has already been stated, family ties are highly developed among many people and there is nothing strange that the wrong action wanted to be corrected. Other family members of Polyneices did not pay attention to Creon and his power and did all possible to protect their dignity and secure family traditions.
The question is whether these people should be punished or not. On the one hand, the direct order of the governor was violated; but on the other hand, people just wanted to remain just. The situation is rather complicated as on the one hand, the governor should listen to his heart and understand the reaction of other relatives who just wanted to follow traditions. On the other hand, having made a decision once a good governor should not change it. The family relations are involved, therefore, it is impossible to remain objective.
But family is not something that can be either supported or not. Moreover, it is inadmissible to judge a person who wanted to keep the tradition and not to allow Creon to remain careless in the relation to his relatives. The actions concerning punishing those who buried Polyneices were inadmissible as Creon should be heartless to do so. Reading the play, it is impossible to miss the careless attitude and heartless relation to those who tried to secure tradition of the family and the great name of the dead person.
Creon does not have the right to be entitled to the throne as he does not correspond to the number of particular features. Thus, being a ruler of the country Creon has to be powerful. Is it possible to run the country without having the power to protect a member of the family, to perform the final will and to bury Polyneices with other relatives?
The violation of the government rules is not that criminal like the violation of the family tradition. To be entitled to the throne, a person should have a dignity. I am not sure that a person who dared to betray a family can be respected.
Family is sacred and a family of a ruler should be even more protected. And what does Creon do? He makes all possible to show the people of his country that he does not respect his family. Governor’s family is a reflection of his reputation. Looking at the present times, the history of the families of the political leaders are carefully searched and discussed. The history should be clear. Even though the times considered in the play are much earlier, the rules are unchangeable.
Only a person who can be respected by the whole society has the tight to be entitled to the throne. A person who not only violates the tradition of the family, but who is able to betray the family cannot be respected. He cannot be trusted. Therefore, the actions conducted by Creon and the consequences those actions led to does not show Creon as a good leader.
In conclusion, it should be stated that that Creaon’s actions directed at the burial of Polyneices cannot be justified. He violated all the moral and ethical norms, showed himself as a person which cannot be trusted and respected. It is impossible to give a person an opportunity to be entitled at a throne who cannot keep the most honored and sacred institution, the institution of the family.
Family is everything for a person and the inability to organize family relations in an appropriate manner, the failure to remain connected with the roots should be considered as the inability to run the country.