Homework Help

What are the characteristics of the character Antigone in terms of what she is...

user profile pic

cmaster2 | Student, Undergraduate | eNotes Newbie

Posted April 22, 2010 at 11:29 PM via web

dislike 1 like

What are the characteristics of the character Antigone in terms of what she is committed to?

I am writing a research paper on Antigone, and I wanted to do a character study on the character Antigone.  I need a little help coming up with ideas.  Thank you for helping!

2 Answers | Add Yours

user profile pic

mstultz72 | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

Posted April 23, 2010 at 12:17 AM (Answer #1)

dislike 1 like

Antigone is a tragic hero who makes at least two mistakes which contribute to her death: she takes an unbending course of action which leads, ultimately, to self-martyrdom; she refuses to suffer her punishment alone and commits suicide out of weakness or love of death.

Antigone is a feminist, as she is not defined by men.  She demands to be heard by Creon and the public.  Unlike her submissive and fearful sister Ismene, Antigone is an outspoken vixen generations ahead of her time.

Antigone upholds the gods' laws over man's laws. In this way, Antigone is a religious hero.  She knows that her brother's body must be buried according to the gods' decree, and she is willing to enact civil disobedience in moral defense.

Antigone is a romantic idealist.  In short, she has a death wish.  She sees suicide as a noble cause, and she makes decisions that lead her to this fate.  She wants to be remembered as a martyr.

user profile pic

Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted April 23, 2010 at 8:13 AM (Answer #2)

dislike 1 like

I would focus on Antigone's strength of determination and will.  She presents herself as a uniquely powerful philosophical woman.  It is a challenge to find such a philosophically driven woman in literature.  Antigone is steadfast in her pursuit of justice, even if it exists outside of the law.  She does not waver in this commitment and despite the please of her sister and others, she does not bend in her belief of what she feels is right.  The collision between the law and justice is remarkably embodied by Antigone.  In her commitment, there is almost a mythic- like quality within her.  She demonstrates this drive and zeal all the way to her death and does not weaken in her resolve, actually gaining strength and momentum throughout the play.

Join to answer this question

Join a community of thousands of dedicated teachers and students.

Join eNotes