Sophocles Oedipus the King and Antigone Discussion Sophocles Oedipus the King and Antigone Discussion You will write a five page paper (approximately 1,500 word

Sophocles Oedipus the King and Antigone Discussion

Sophocles Oedipus the King and Antigone Discussion

You will write a five page paper (approximately 1,500 words) based on Homer’s Odyssey and/or Sophocles Oedipus the King and Antigone. As before, choose a topic that focuses on one or the other or the interaction of both. The list below provides a few possible suggestions. Be sure you have a clear thesis based on your main idea and use the paper to support your thesis.

Possible Topics

Discuss the theme of personal identity and self-knowledge. This is a key issue for both Odysseus and Oedipus. (With regard to Odysseus, see the essay by George Dimock posted earlier in the semester.)

Discuss the role of fate and free will or agency in human affairs as depicted by Homer and/or Sophocles. Can human beings make a real difference in the world through their choices and actions? You may also want to consider gender in relation to this topic, since women (Penelope, Antigone, Ismene, Jocasta) are particularly constrained in their power to act.

Oedipus and his family seem cursed, while Odysseus draws great strength from his family, with loving relationships with his wife, son, and father. Yet Oedipus is not obviously a worse man than Odysseus. How might we account for this difference? Is it just luck of the draw, or is there something more going on?

Discuss the theme of blindness in Homer and Sophocles (e.g., Polyphemus, Tiresias, Eurycleia, Oedipus).

Using Aristotle’s six essential elements, discuss either the element of plot – how did Homer and Sophocles choose to tell their stories and why did they make certain choices? Or Character – what does Odysseus or Oedipus learn about themselves and how does that help the audience/reader learn something about themselves?

As with all written work, we expect to see thoughtful, well-written, and grammatically correct prose befitting an upper-level college course. Please be mindful of the usual standards of academic integrity and ensure that you cite all sources used in your paper (Turabian or MLA format preferred).

You must proofread your paper. But do not strictly rely on your computer’s spell-checker and grammar-checker; failure to do so indicates a lack of effort on your part and you can expect your grade to suffer accordingly. Papers with numerous misspelled words and grammatical mistakes will be penalized. Read over your paper – in silence and then aloud – before handing it in and make corrections as necessary. Often it is advantageous to have a friend proofread your paper for obvious errors. Handwritten corrections are preferable to uncorrected mistakes.

Use a standard 10 to 12 point (10 to 12 characters per inch) typeface. Smaller or compressed type and papers with small margins or single-spacing are hard to read. It is better to let your essay run over the recommended number of pages than to try to compress it into fewer pages.

Likewise, large type, large margins, large indentations, triple-spacing, increased leading (space between lines), increased kerning (space between letters), and any other such attempts at “padding” to increase the length of a paper are unacceptable, wasteful of trees, and will not fool your professor.

The paper must be neatly formatted, double-spaced with a one-inch margin on the top, bottom, and sides of each page. When submitting hard copy, be sure to use white paper and print out using dark ink. If it is hard to read your essay, it will also be hard to follow your argument.

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