Compare and Contrast Essay Sample About Medeс and Antigone

Posted on June 2, 2009

The main characters of all Greek dramas are usually alike in some ways and different in others. Medeс, by Euripides and Antigone by Sophocles are Greek dramas, and so the characters, Antigone and Medeс also have similarities as well as differences. By comparing and contrasting these two characters, we gain more knowledge about their motives and ambitions, and as a result, we can more easily understand their behaviors. By doing so, we also obtain a better insight concerning what basis each one comes from. Although the goals, irrational behaviors and personalities of Medeс and Antigone are what make them alike, their motivations, actions and destinies are what separate them.

Antigone’s goal is to obtain justice for her brother, but since she is stubborn and irrational, she cannot fully complete her purpose. Antigone is a loving person, who’s objective is justice for both of her brothers. She is someone very fond of the meaning of family and she doesn’t feel right when one of her brothers is ordered to be left out and be eaten by animals. She wants to give her brother eternal, but the state doesn’t allow it. Even though she is eager to fulfill justice, her irrationality forbids her from doing so. For example, when asked by Creon if she admits to her part in burying Polyneices, she replies, “I do, I deny nothing.” (II, 55) She acts very bigheaded, but she is not one who should do so since she is a women living in a male dominant society, and because her confessing can cause death for her. Her personality is another reason why she cannot accomplish her goal of justice. Even though she is a women, Antigone believes herself to be someone very important and dominant, and, she thinks she is smart and strong enough to go out a disobey the state law and burry her brother. Her love towards family, emotions and stubbornness overcome Antigone and cause her to do what she does.

Like Antigone, Medeс’s objective is to behold justice as well, but due to the lack of rationality and being able to listen, she cannot attain justice in an orderly, civilized fashion. Unlike Antigone, Medeс is an evil and hateful person, and her only goal in mind is retaliation and revenge on her ex-husband, Jason. Though in a sense evil, Medeс seems to love her children at first. When brought to her attention that she and her children are to be exiled from Corinth, Medeс sprouts anger and she gets a craving thought of revenge for she cannot bear the thought of her children uneducated and living in the streets. Although her goal is to avenge her enemies, her irrationality and persistence disables her from doing so in a cultured manner. Like Antigone, Medeс is not someone who will listen to others and take in consideration their suggestions. For example, when the Nurse trying to help Medeс says, “My lady; Lord Aegeus is here in Corinth, Creon’s guest. Aegeus of Athens. If you will see him and speak him fairly, we have a refuge.” (I, 247-252) Medeс, showing her unreason ability and stubbornness, turns to the Nurse and says, “I have things in my hand to do. Be quiet.” (I, 252-253) Medeс’s reply shows her stubborn behavior and inability to listen. Similar to Antigone, she thinks she has a better alternative solution to her problem. Her evil personality and uncivilized manner of attaining revenge is shown near the end when she kills her own children to cause endless pain for Jason. She says to him, “I have met you, throat for throat, evil for evil, vengeance for vengeance.” (II, 345) Here the hateful and evil way of Medeс’s retaliation is portrayed.

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