HomeLUMINAvol. 23 no. 2 (2012)

Gender Pride as Tragic Flaw in Sophocles’ Antigone

Omolara Kikelomo Owoeye

Discipline: Literature



This paper reexamines the source of dramatic conflict between Antigone and Creon in Sophocles’ time-honoured classic, Antigone. Whereas critics are wont to interpret the play as a case of the State against the individual as inferred from certain declarations and actions of Creon, the present study discovers, through a psychoanalytic study of Creon, that the dominant reason for which Creon does not want to be seen as buying Antigone’s explanation for flouting Creon’s edict and burying her brother is because she is a woman. Creon’s attitude betrays his disregard for the female gender and haughtiness arising from his membership of what he considers the superior gender. Creon’s eventual tragic end is finally propelled by his obstinate refusal to change grounds because, to him, that will constitute being beaten by a woman.