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Essay about Peripeteia in Oedipus Rex

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Aristotle in his famous book 'Poetics' describes the traits needed to complete the tragedy. As in accordance to Aristotle, any tragedy is a perfect tragedy when the action has soberness, expansive, and ideal in it. Some of the important factors of a perfect tragedy are Peripeteia, Anagnorisis, and catharsis. King Oedipus of Greek mythology owns all the features of a complete tragedy. Oedipus epitomizes these aspects by adding an exclusive breadth, exemplifying a complete flow, presenting a tragic complex plot, and having a central character with a tragic flaw or hamartia that brings about Catharsis. For example, the plot of Oedipus is the end to which a tragedy exists. The Oedipus plot has some merits or solemnness due to the disobedience of two common prohibitions It has universal significance through the application of myths, the destabilization of one's identity, the acceptance of the human condition, and the role of destiny. Prohibited Oedipus violations are an indispensable sin of Patricides and the incest and this drama is the first to involve each of them in the same person. In addition, Sophocles used myths in his play, most exceptionally with the involvement of Apollo the Apostle of the Sphinx, and the Oracle.

Furthermore, according to Aristotle, tragedy sets the sequence of events or occasions that the poets describe. The plot should have virtual unity or a 'whole' in which all events resemble a series of reasons and effects. All the events in Oedipus play together in the same event, one after the other as needed individually, each action being unconstitutional with no external interference. Full flow also needs to be of equal importance to the beginning, middle, and equal plots in which the sequence of events, according to the law of probability or necessity, will, fortunately, admit to deterioration (Aristotle 523). There should be a series of even more tragic events that are now not permanent, however as a substitute permanent. The beginning starts with a series of events that all rise to the top and therefore lead to the solution and end of the play.

A tragedy must begin at the moment of stimulation. In Oedipus, it is a plague in Thebes. As the priest pleaded with Oedipus, Thebes had been dying. Oedipus, aware of the dire state of his city, sends Creon to Delphi for advice. Oracle responds that Laius’s killer should be deported from Thebes: 'Murder inflicts plague on the city' (Sophocles 395), and Oracle's response is the second case in the series. Oedipus cursed Laius’s killer and pledged himself to a mission to find the murderer and deport him, saying that he will light it all by himself. The fourth case is about the arrival of the blind prophet Tiresias to accuse Oedipus. This is especially true to build the irony in the play because of its interconnection with blindness, which hurts Oedipus now and he will later suffer physically. It also causes a quarrel between Creon and Oedipus, revealing Oedipus's flaws to the audience.

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According to Aristotle the Peripeteia is another important element of the plot which is the sixth incident in which Oedipus discovers that the man he had killed was his own natal father and the woman he married was his own natal mother.

As Aristotle said, 'The finest form of identity is that which is reversed” (Aristotle 523). In the plot of Oedipus, Peripeteia is intrinsically linked to agnosia. These two elements combine the rise of Oedipus with a change of fortune from good to bad, from being a respectable king to being a good husband to a cruel murderer of his own father. These events, leading up to the finale, eventually unveil the ultimate catastrophe: the suicide of Jocasta, the loss of Oedipus himself, and finally the closure and resolution in which Creon regrets Oedipus' fall. In this way, the play does not revolve around Oedipus; rather it focuses on the development of events that accompany it in the play. The character takes second place in the plot. However, according to Aristotle's view, Oedipus possesses the qualities of a perfect tragic hero. He says of the main character, 'First and foremost, it should be good. The character should not be too evil but not too good. In this way, Oedipus has been able to follow the prescription of SOPHOCLES. However, Oedipus falls down to his highest position, not because of any fault of his own, but because he failed to escape his destiny. Although it may have flaws, it is inevitable that the cause of its discomfort.

Conclusion: - In this way, Oedipus has all the features of the perfect Aristotelian tragedy. It illustrates the ambiguity, and seriousness of the involvement of the major issues and shows a complex plot with all the necessary components. So Oedipus has not only passed the test of a perfect tragedy but has created in the mind of the audience the same place it used to be on its first day.

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