Antigone Essay Prompts

Antigone Essay Prompts-47
As Creon’s political rhetoric unravels, his gender ideology further emerges as a dominant reason for insisting on Antigone’s punishment.In a passionate outburst, he insists that he “not let [himself] be beaten by a woman.As such, for Creon, the mere notion of abstaining Antigone from criminality is experienced as a loss of personal dignity.

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Creon’s hoarding of the power to “[rule]” suggests that Creon designates the political sphere as masculine and deems women as apolitical or unworthy of political participation.

When Creon immediately reacts to the Guard’s news of Polyneices’ burial with, “What man has dared to do it?

Creon’s insistence that “I won’t be called weaker than womankind” (680) reveals a male superiority complex that aligns masculinity with strength and dominance and femininity with weakness and subordination.

Even the Chorus of Theban elders, assumed to hold a neutral perspective so as to advise Creon on matters of society, consists entirely of old Theban men, excluding female perspectives from the political arena.

” (248), he assumes that transgression – a political act – is possible only by a man.

Martin Luther King Jr Essays - Antigone Essay Prompts

In other words, Creon – at least initially – assumes acts of civil disobedience to be inherently masculine.

According to Helene Foley, ancient Greek culture “reinforced symbolic links between female, ‘nature,’ domestic/private, emotion/the irrational, and passivity and male, culture, public, rational/the self-controlled, and activity” (232).

Such a systematic dichotomization of gendered characteristics, while seemingly arbitrary, has systemic political consequences – the political structure “identifies itself with a limited group of free men…

that has definitively expelled women from its androcentric sphere” (Cavarero 48).

Such an expulsion seems inevitable given that the political realm has been, by the gender essentialist’s definition, deemed out-of-bounds for women, with no place for so-called feminine emotionality.


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