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GREAT LITERATURE

PLOT ANALYSIS :
OEDIPUS REX (BY SOPHOCLES)

Summary Oedipus Rex

When Thebes is struck by a plague, the people ask King Oedipus to deliver
them from its horrors,to find the murderer of Laius, the king who ruled Thebes
before Oedipus. Oedipus sets about to solve the murder ask the blind prophet
Tiresias at first refuses to speak, but finally accuses Oedipus himself of killing
Laius. Oedipus ask Jocasta about Lauis, explaining that a prophet once told her
that Laius, her husband, would die at the hands of their son. According to Jocasta,
the prophecy did not come true because the baby died, abandoned, and Laius
himself was killed by a band of robbers at a crossroads. Oedipus becomes
distressed by Jocasta's remarks because just before he came to Thebes he killed
a man who resembled Laius at a crossroads. Oedipus also have prediction from
an oracle that he was fated to kill his father and marry his mother. Fear of the
prophecy drove him from his home in Corinth and brought him ultimately to
Thebes. Oedipus finds out from a messenger that Polybus, king of Corinth,
Oedipus' father, has died of old age. In fact, evidently Polybus and Merope are not
Oedipus' real parents but Oedipus is actually the son of Laius and Jocasta. And so,
despite his precautions, the prophecy that Oedipus dreaded has actually come
true. Realizing that he has killed his father and married his mother, Oedipus is
agonized by his fate. Rushing into the palace, Oedipus finds that the queen has
killed herself with hanged herself, and Oedipus, finding her dead, has pulled the
pins from her robe and stabbed out his own eyes, so that he can no longer look
upon the misery he has caused. Oedipus now emerges from the palace, bleeding
and begging to be exiled. He asks Creon to send him away from Thebes and to
look after his daughters, Antigone and Ismene.
Plot Analysis - Oedipus The King

The analysis is based on the drama stage play script, title of Oedipus The
King by Sophocles. The plot of Oedipus The King is so remarkable that the drama
has been called one of the most perfect dramas in terms of its plot construction.
The story full of msytery. The plot of this play is precise, and it is thematically
compact. The theme of this story that fate is iniscapable, and no matter how hard
one may try, fate will happen and we are powerless against fate. This theme is
seen throughout the events that occured in he story with the main characters
because two of them tried to escape fate at all costs, but instead, they ran into fate.
Jocasta and Lauis tried to avoid their pre-destined fate, told to them by the
prophency by attempting to kill their child. Oedipus tried escaping his fate, also
told by the prophecy by running away from Corinth and going to Thebes. The
subthemes aslo are truth, ignorance, death, and honour.

The beginner plays expositon of setting, the story of during ancient times in
Greece, specially in the land of Thebes for the main part, where Oedipus is the
new found king because the original king of Thebes, Lauis, was killed. Situation
about Oedipus is aware that there is a curse on Thebes and has Creon gather
insight into how to lift it. These are the circumstances at the beginning of the play.
At first, it seems like this is just another "Thebes has a problem, Oedipus makes it
go away," deal. The main characters are Oedipus, Jocasta, Creon, Tiresias, and
The First Messenger. While, the minor character is the Chorus Leader and the
servant. The main conflict about finding the murderer, cause Lauis is murdered.
No one wants to provide any information to Oedipus about Laius’s murder.
Oedipus struggles to get Tiresias, the messenger, and the shepherd to talk. He’s
desperate to solve the mystery but he keeps being urged to drop it.

The rising action play begins with the search for the cause of the plague,
Oedipus goes to look for man who killed the of Thebes and curse the murder. For
example, Oedipus say “Now my curse on the murderer. Whoever he is, a lone
man unknown in his crime or one among many, let that man drag out his life in
agony, step by painful step”. Second, Oedipus ask Tiresias about the murder,
because he’s a wise man, but Tiresias refuses to share any iinformation about the
truth because it will cause an even bigger disturbance and even more pain. For
example, Tiresias cryptically states, “You all are ignorant. I will not reveal the
troubling things inside me, which I can call you grief as well”. Thus, Oedipus begin
to wonder if his brother in laws, Creon and Tiresias are conspiring against him
with the accustion. For example, Tiresias gets angry and tells Oedipus he is to
blame. So, Oedipus thinks Tiresias and Creon are in a plot to over throw him.

The climax of this story is when it is revealed to Oedipus that he is the child of
Jocasta and Laius. Oedipus realizes he’s slept with his mother and killed his father.
He also realized that his whole life was a lie and that instead of running away from
his fate, which was a huge turning point. He ran straight into his fate and did as
the prophecy stated about killed his father and married his mother. In a moment of
horror, Oedipus understands what he’s done. This is the emotional and
psychological climax of the play.

The beginning of the falling action begun when Oedipus realizes who he and
his biological parents are. The horror behind the truth causes him to storm back
into the palace to confront Jocasta. Ashamed that her past mistakes were coming
to light, Jocasta decides to commit suicide. Jocasta kills herself, because she
cannot bear with the pain. For example, “She was hanging there, swaying, with
twisted cords roped round her neck”. Oedipus also realizes that the is a killed was
his father. Thus, Oedipus finds Jocasta hanging and blinds himself with pokes out
his own eyes. Because he was ashamed of killing his own father, marrying his
mother and having children with her, Oedipus figures he does not deserve to see
so he gashes his eyes out with golden brooches from Jocasta’s dead body. For
example, “from her clothes he ripped the golden brooches she wore as ornaments,
raised them high, and drove them deep into his eyeballs”.
The resolution of this story is how the story finally ended as a result of what
the character found out in the climax. Therefore, he laments for all his past and his
ill-fated life, and he also moans for the destiny of his children. But his mind is full of
conflicts of several kinds. Creon takes over and commands that he be taken
inside, for the moment, before being driven away from the city. The resolution of
this story is when Oedipus asks Creon to become king, take care of his two
daughters, Antigone and Ismene,and to exile himself from Thebes forever. For
example, Oedipus say “But my two poor daughters have never known my dining
table placed away from them or lacked their father’s presence. They shared
everything I touched-that’s how it’s always been. So take care of them for me”.
Oedipus hopes the decision and mistakes he has made affects his daughters in
their life and their able to be genuinely happy, unlike him.

In conclusion, the plot of Oedipus The King is perfect because nothing is left
loose or illogical. The unities are maintained and the actions and dialogue are fully
convincing and have satisfaction and emotional. The process of unfolding the
truth of the life and destiny of Oedipus also changes and enlightens the audience
to realize their own human condition.