Last Updated on July 29, 2019, by eNotes Editorial. Word Count: 252
Oedipus Rex, Sophocles's play written c. 430 B.C., years after Antigone, concerns the downfall of Oedipus, Antigone's father. As king of Thebes, Oedipus must remove the plague from the city of Thebes by solving the murder of Laius, who was king before Oedipus. In doing so he discovers that he has murdered his own father, married his own mother, and himself brought the plague on the city.
French playwright Jean Anouilh's Antigone presents a modern version of Sophocles's play, one in which the chorus is represented by a single commentator. The play was applauded by both French resistance fighters and German Nazis during World War II.
Alcestis, Euripides's play first produced in 438 B.C. presents a contrast to Antigone in terms of both substance and style. When considered next to Sophocles and his apparent devotion to religious ideas and to the gods, Euripides seems to be a realist. In this play, Alcestis, wife of Admetus, agrees to die for him and for his family. This action serves as a contrast to Antigone's claim that she would not die for a husband or for children.
Kurt Vonnegut's 1976 novel Slapstick presents a futuristic view of a longing for relationship and for kinship, and one character's political program to make sure that every American citizen has an extended family.
The Godfather, Mario Puzo's 1969 novel about an organized crime syndicate, describes a family structure that is set in opposition to mainstream American political and ethical life and is organized around ideas of kinship and blood ties.
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