In scene 2, the choragus accuses Antigone of being headstrong, deaf to reason, and unyielding; then he says her behavior is barefaced anarchy. Could either apply to Creon? Why?

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noahvox2 | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

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In Sophocles' Antigone, despite the fact that the title character violates Creon's decree that Polyneices should not be buried, if we look at these two characters closely, we find that they are more alike than either would like to admit.

One needs only look at Creon's conversation with Haemon to see that Creon is headstrong, deaf to reason, and unyielding. Even Haemon, Creon's own son, cannot get his father to see that his decree of death against Antigone is causing the people of the city to be very troubled. Haemon makes a reasonable argument to his father that moderation is needed in the matter involving Antigone, but Creon thinks that Haemon is a slave to the woman and Creon refuses to yield.

Of course, later on in the play, after Creon's encounter with Teiresias, Creon changes his mind once he hears the divine perspective on his actions. Unfortunately, at this point, it is too late for Creon to reverse course as Antigone has already killed herself.

As for anarchy, it is difficulty to see how Creon could be accused of anarchy. Anarchy means a state of lacking law. Creon, as king of Thebes, represents human law. Unless Creon's anarchy is viewed from the perspective of the gods, whose position Antigone advocates in the play. For Antigone, adherence to divine law is more important than adherence to human law (i.e., Creon). Creon, on the other hand, as king of Thebes does not want anyone to go against what he has decreed.

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