Oedipus defeats the Sphinx in war
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Oedipus defeats the Sphinx in war
I: Sophocles – Oedipus the King
- Chorus: Pride breeds the tyrant
Violent pride, gorging, crammed to bursting
With all that is overripe and rich with ruin–
Clawing up to the heights, headlong pride
Crashes down the abyss–sheer doom!
When Oedipus defeats the Sphinx in war, he talks to the people of Thebes in a way that is ironical for us who know his fate. Based on the old myths, he is proud of having got out victoriously, yet the reality facing him ahead is terrible. When the Chorus speaks, there is a reiteration of how Oedipus will eventually come to his downfall because of his proud. At some other point, Tiresias says the statement to insist on the end of Oedipus due to his weak character.
The quote summarizes the story of Oedipus. He will come to an end due to his pride a character that is hated by the gods on Greece in the past. Besides, the Chorus builds dramatic irony pointing out that though Oedipus prides and thinks he is out for success for having been successful in a lot of missions, he will not actually be successful in the end. We as the audience know what Oedipus does not know.
II: Shakespeare – Hamlet
- “How weary, stale, flat, and unprofitable seem to me all the uses of this world.” (Shakespeare)
This is a quote happens as Hamlet pleads with God. It appears like the author was showing the importance of faith in times of distresses and stress. He cries to lord maybe hoping to have some relief but his desperation is beyond help that he now surrenders to death. If his mother marries the murderer of her father, the world is no longer important to him. Indeed, the quote builds Hamlet as a hopeless, Christian, but an emotional character who presence, disillusion, hopelessness, and shows vehemence. Besides, his character juxtaposes the Hamlet who was strong and loving towards the mother. It also foretells disaster in the text as there will be a possible conflict between him and any other character who has made his life desperate.
III: Ibsen – The Doll’s House
- Torvald: Before all else, you’re a wife and mother.
Nora: I don’t believe in that anymore. I believe that, before all else, I’m a human being, no less than you…” (Ibsen)
In the third act, Nora shows her change from naive, gullible, fragile and doll like character to frank, firm, rebellious and independent character. She objected to Helmer’s overbearing character, which had kept her in an unhappy marriage. She can no longer be a wife and mother. Instead, she stands by what she believes being free and doing what she likes not what the society feels is right. The quote is an affirmative statement to show the liberty of women as they resist societal consideration of them as people to stay at home, listen to the husband, and take care of homes. Besides, it is quite an ironical and rather satirical situation to end the Doll’s House story.
IV: Miller – Death of a Salesman
- “You can’t eat the orange and throw the peel away. A man is not a piece of fruit.” Willy
Willy says this statement to directly rebuke consumption. While serving as a salesman at the beginning for the father to Howard and later Howard, Willy is being discarded, just like an orange peel would be thrown away. It is like he has no value at all, he is used and now as a senile elderly individual, he has no value. Willy builds a metaphor, analogy, and a symbol too to mean that after the Howards took the best of him, energy, tough, ability through their work, they now think he is a useless thing which should be damped away. His age and speed are equal to an orange peel. Besides, the statement shows the wisdom, critical, and philosophical nature of Willy and the extorting, abusive, unappreciative, and exploitative nature of the Howards. It also builds the themes of capitalism, egocentrism, brutality, and exploitation in which the Howards mind value they get than what they offer to their workforce.
- Hwang – M. Butterfly
- “I have a vision. Of the Orient. That, deep within its almond eyes, there are still women. Women willing to sacrifice themselves for the love of a man. Even a man whose love is completely without worth.” Gallimard (92)
While in the French prison cell, Gullimard reveals that Song was a man, but he rejects a culturally supported truth and abandons to fantasies. He speaks in a soliloquy that results into an orgasmic gratification. He seems to be seeking freedom from the other and reevaluates the human subject as he moves beyond the Platonic ideal of the ‘individual’. The western principles of what one should be. The statements seem to be present cultural conflict, orientalism, and imperialism as he reveals who the actual Japanese women are as they sacrifice for love regardless of how it is. Still, it presents some sort of stereotype, desperateness, gender differences, cultural differences when it comes to love. The speaker should be a keen, wishful, sadist who enjoys the suffrage of women.
VI: Kushner – Angels in America
- “Nothing’s lost forever. In this world, there is a kind of painful progress. Longing for what we’ve left behind, and dreaming ahead. At least I think that’s so.”(Harper – leaving on the plane at the end of part II)
When Harper flew to San Francisco, he thought about this statement carefully, revealing the long time he had experienced before his flight, his meditation on the past, and his reflection on the tragedy people had experienced in many troubles and disasters. He believed that regardless of many people perishing in both natural and man-made situations, they had descended into descent images never to be forgotten. The statement offers themes of hope, tragedy, and consolation, a nostalgic situation that also presents Pitts as a reflective, meditative, and loyal character who wishes the best for his people. It possibly offers a flashback and foreshadows into the future of the nation and Pitt himself while showing the terrible tragedy that once faced the people.