Traditional readings of Oedipus the King focus on the tragic.docx
Traditional readings of Oedipus the King focus on the tragic downfall of its
Traditional readings of Oedipus the King focus on the tragic downfall of its protagonist. I
would like you to write an essay about Sophocles’ play that does not follow this traditional
approach to the text. You can still write about the character of Oedipus (and this is
inevitable given that he is the focal point of virtually every episode in the text) but he cannot
be the focus of your paper. Instead, I would like you to write an analysis that takes into
account the communal aspects of the play. There are various ways to approach this
assignment: you can write about the political implications of the play (the tension that
exists in the play between absolute rule and democracies), the depiction of Thebes as a city-
state (a walled city set apart from the wasteland that surrounds it), or even the
metaphysical dimension of the play (the role of gods and their interactions with humans).
What does Oedipus the King look like as a text when we turn our attention away from its
protagonist and focus our attention on other aspects of the text? Please make sure that
your essay includes textual citations.