Oedipus the King is a play that was done by Sophocles. Details that have been provided about Oedipus the King indicate that the play is very interesting. The playwright has done a remarkable job. The story’s background together with its plot may be known to Ancient Greeks, but Sophocles has managed to present the play in a manner that is as evocative as it is powerful, thus nullifying any suggestion that the Oedipus story is known. Given the interesting nature of this play, a student is bound to find it equally exciting to write an essay on Oedipus the King.
The student could start his/her essay on Oedipus the King by giving a brief background of the play. He/she will then proceed to analyze how the play has been performed. In this section, the student should be very careful not to go into too much detail and create an unnecessarily long essay. This requires proper summarization skills when writing a literature essay. Bear in mind that this is just an essay, should not be as lengthy as the play itself, and should highlight and explore only the main happenings.
Since Oedipus the King is a mythical play, the student should show clearly in the essay how the play relates to mythical practice. Another aspect to explore when writing an essay on Oedipus the King is to show how the play was received when it was first staged. The student must indicate that the play won second prize at the first performance.
In addition, as with any other literature essay, the student must identify the play’s themes. In the case of essay on Oedipus the King, themes such as fate along with free will and state control must be features.
Oedipus the King essay example
The issue of free will and fate are known to be vital problems even in contemporary philosophy. These are perhaps the most mysterious and eternal questions that may interest the human beings. Perhaps the best illustration of fate and free will conflict is the story about Oedipus the King of Thebes from the legendary ancient play called “Oedipus the King.”
The author of the story tends to stick to the point that the fate of each human being is more likely to be controlled by the external supernatural forces that are out of control of humans. Consequently, people cannot be the owners of their own fates. Sophocles also had a special view of the free will as being used to hold responsible in order to shape different aspects of human lives. Moreover, the author masterly resorted to irony usage in order to render the ultimately tragic conflict between the two notions: free will and fate.
The story itself starts with the announcement of the terrible event that happened to Thebes. Thebes were cursed and the plague affected the city caused by an impure being that killed Laius. Oedipus is the protagonist of the story in his turn cursed the murdered of his father to exile, though, in fact, the person that killed Laius was Oedipus himself. The irony and the ultimate paradox of the conflict is the fact that King Oedipus is willing to punish the murderer and cannot possibly realize it because he is not aware of the fact that it was actually him who killed his own father. There is an example of how the free will and fate may ruin people’s lives and turn happiness into sorrow: “I curse that murderer; if he is alone I curse him” (Sophocles, 263).