Which character is more flawed, Antigone or Creon?Flawed meaning more susceptible to poor judgment

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Lori Steinbach eNotes educator| Certified Educator

These two characters in Oedipus clearly (and obviously, considering Antigone's heritage) share some genetic traits, one of them being stubbornness. It's true that Creon is trying to maintain order and discipline, and it's true that laws should be obeyed unless they directly contradict a higher moral law (which is, of course, Antigone's argument).  It's also true, though, that he simply digs his heels in and refuses to accommodate any position but his own.  He punishes Polyneices but does not address the fact that Eteocles unjustly kept the throne rather than rotating, as they had decided to do.  Antigone has her own issues, of course, but she's not a king; it's incumbent upon Creon to at least consider all sides or positions, not just stubbornly stand on his own poor judgment.

jilllessa eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that Creon is more flawed than Antigone.  Her cause is at least righteous.  She wants to bury her brother so he can rest peacefully in the afterlife.  She may have gone about it in a prideful way, but her cause is just.  The burial of Polynieces does not have the same import to Creon.  It is just his pride that keeps him from forgiving Antigone.  He does not even pretend to try and understand her reasoning.  He gives no thought to her or Polynieces as family.  He gives no thought to the arguments of his son.  He will not change his mind and he will not be told what to do by a woman.  He had the power to be gracious but he did not use his power wisely and he paid for it with everything he held dear.

teachertaylor eNotes educator| Certified Educator

Consider whether Creon’s judgment in this situation is really poor.  He is a new king, and it is his duty to maintain order and peace in Thebes.  He wants to send a message to the people that treason is not acceptable and that he will only support those who are loyal followers and citizens of the city.  We cannot forget that Antigone clearly broke the law—she admits that she is aware of the decree set forth by the king, yet she believes that this law in incorrect.  In contemporary times, the law does not support vigilante crimes, so why should this be acceptable in the city of Thebes?