In what way is the play Antigone influenced by the audience?

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The original production of Antigone, like all Greek tragedies, would have been a reflection of the social and moral values shared by its audience. Plays were a community event in Ancient Greece, religious festivals designed to bind everyone together by invoking common values. Sophocles would've been aware of this, of course, and in writing Antigone would've been conscious of the need to represent the values of the city-state in the unfolding drama.

In Antigone, it is the Chorus which, in keeping with the dramatic conventions of Greek theater, gives a voice to community values. At times sympathetic, critical, and censorious, the Chorus gives us a general idea of how the play's original audience would've responded to the action onstage. The audience would doubtless have understood why Antigone defied Creon by burying the dead body of her brother Polynices. But at the same time, they would also have felt more than a little hostile toward Creon over his cruelty and unbending stubbornness.

In representing the values of his audience, Sophocles wasn't pandering to them in any way. He was simply doing what was expected of him as a playwright: articulating the values of a society of which he was very much a part.

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