Is Antigone a Feminist?Is Antigone a feminist? Support your answer with text and/or analysis. 

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jamie-wheeler's profile pic

Jamie Wheeler | College Teacher | eNotes Employee

Posted on

Yes, yes.  Very good response!  I have a lot of student's argue that she is and they do make some valid points.  She is unafraid of men's opinions of her, stands up to Creon, goes her own way (to the Underworld) despite what anyone else says. 

But if we are looking to a basic definition of a feminist, that woman (or man) would believe, at least, that a woman is trying to overcome, for her sex, oppression and subjegation.  She is trying to gain equality in areas such as pay, work, and care of children.

Antigone has no larger purpose beyond herself, not even for her sister.  Her actions are strong, she is a woman, but she has no interest in making her own life "better" or the lives of anyone else, for that matter.  I say she is not a feminist. 

malibrarian's profile pic

malibrarian | High School Teacher | (Level 1) Educator

Posted on

This is one of those questions that I feel like I am answering with my gut-instinct, but I'm not sure if I can really explain where I'm coming from on this.  So, bear with me...

I do not think Antigone is a feminist.  I think she is a loyal daughter and sister, and is willing to die to defend what she believes to be right (burying her brother according to the laws of the gods).  I just don't see her as fighting for women's rights or equality in any way...She is a tragic figure who is destined to die because she refuses to yield in the face of tyranny and injustice.

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