Consistency Leads To Destruction in Sophocles Essay

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In his well known essay, Self-Reliance, famous writer Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote, “A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds, adored by little statesmen and philosophers and divines. With consistency a great soul has simply nothing to do.” Put simply, the thought that Emerson is conveying is that too much consistency is not necessarily a good thing. Being too consistent with something means that no real effort is made. Things are done as they always have been, without someone trusting their own beliefs or opinions. In fact, the overall themes of Emerson’s essay is a person should stick to what their conscience tells them to, and not fear what others will think. After consistency there will inevitably be negative consequences. …show more content…
The king is stating this about his niece, Antigone, for she defied Creon by burying her brother. Creon is so caught up on the notion that someone could break a law he doesn’t even care about condemning his niece to death. Instead of thinking with his heart or his head, Creon chooses to think by the rulebook; the laws as they have always been instead of what they could be. On the contrary, Antigone chose to think with the Greek morals, which were to honor the Gods and stay loyal to one’s family above everything else. Antigone never stopped declaring that the Gods were being defied by Creon’s proclamation. Antigone tells Creon, “Nor did I think…that you, a mere mortal, could override the Gods…” (82). There was no doubt Antigone loved her brother, but a big part of why she went through her crusade was because she thought it was what the Gods wanted. Furthermore, Antigone stopped at nothing to make her brother’s burial happen, regardless of the pleas made by her sister. Antigone states, “…I will bury him myself. And even if I die in the act, the death will be a glory,” (63). Antigone is such a firm believer in staying loyal to her family that she is willing to sacrifice her own life, and her sister’s happiness, to stay true to tradition. She, like Creon, never questioned the ways of the old, and never for one second fathomed that she could be wrong in what she was doing.

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