I liked the play and the themes in Oedipus. The best part of the book is to see how Oedipus develops as a character. The progression as a character from who he was at the beginning to the end shows all factors of a dramatic character that most books need and love. He shows pride, faith, and intelligence in himself. When he finally sees everything, he has done at the end also shows that he finally got some sense and what is going on around him. Through Oedipus, we learn the truth behind being delusional and how it can affect people in the long run. Oedipus shows that the search for truth is a necessary part of the human condition, and in the process how its suffering causes emotion and potential heartbreak. Another theme that was important to me was human freedom vs. fated destiny. When Oedipus looks to get around the fate that has been set out for him it shows us that no matter what we do is the gods have a destiny for us that there is no way around it.
I think that people from different ethnic groups might see Oedipus Rex in a different light than I did. Some groups around the globe fine relations between family members normal and what they regularly do. So, from one of those groups, if they were to look at this play, they might not see it as different and uncomfortable between Oedipus and his mother as people in North America. People from different age groups also might not see Oedipus and his mother in different lights. Now children around ages 1-6 might not understand the classic marriage roles in Canada, so if they were to hear this play or watch it, they might not know yet how strange this relationship is. Now for a teenager to around mid-thirties might find the relationship so weird and strange because this man was having sex and had children with his mom and somehow didn’t put the pieces together. Lastly, you have elderly people. If they were to look at the situation, they could think that everyone is being overdramatic about it because in reality they didn’t know about each other so looking at it might not be so strange because it wasn’t their fault. Oedipus Rex says a lot about gender roles. They make it seem like women are objects to men and that men are always the head of the relationship. Women have little responsibility in life and are basically seen as child carriers. Anytime Iokaste is mentioned, the fact that she is the carrier of children seems to always be mentioned. In the first scene, Oedipus talks about how owing is to Laios. ‘Now I, having the power that he held before me, having his bed, begetting children there, upon his wife, as he would have, had he lived their son would have been my children’s brother if Laios had had luck in fatherhood!’ (727) Iokaste is not presented as an actual being; instead, she is described as Laios’ property that had come into Oedipus’ possession along with the throne, land, and power.
In Oedipus Rex, fate is in my opinion the reasoning for the outcome of the play. The gods decided Oedipus and Jocasta’s fate before anyone knew. Trying to avoid this fate was pointless because no matter what, it caught up to them no matter what. He thought that he could change his destiny to kill his father and marry his mother, but in reality, their fate was put into action the day Oedipus was born.
During the play, Oedipus tries to change his fate. When he was told by two messengers and an oracle that his destiny was to marry his mother and kill his father, he panicked and left. He knew that he definitely had to avoid the situation, so he decided he would attempt to change his fate. But at that time, he did not realize that your fate will not change. When Oedipus realizes what his future holds, he decides to avoid it at all costs. As a result, he picked up and ran away. Then, in the end, Oedipus realized the man he killed in that street was actually his dad and that his parents that he knew forever were his adopted parents.
I think the main concept that Oedipus Rex shows about morals is the concept of pride. The fact that Oedipus thinks he can have a say in his fate and what the gods have planned out for him shows his pride. Oedipus is also proud of the fact that he does not want to see his fate go through. Also, in Oedipus Rex, it shows a moral implication of how you can’t run away from your fate. No matter what Oedipus did or journey through he could not run away from the fact the gods had been controlling his life and there is nothing he can do about what they have decided. This shows that people will go through close to everything to change what is written in stone even though there isn’t a chance.
One main metaphor used in this play would be Sight vs Blindness. The blind man that told Oedipus his destiny could see something about Oedipus that he couldn’t see in himself. Although the blind man was unable to visually see, he had thoughts that could allow him to see Oedipus’ future through a prophecy. Oedipus had the ability to see and was warned by others and did not take the advice that was offered by others. As a result, he cut his eyes out because of the awful things that he did. How does Oedipus Rex relate in the 21st century some might ask, well if he had been assured of his own goodness, he would not have believed the Oracle when she said he would kill his father and bed his mother. He would have stayed where he was rather than flee and inadvertently cause his own demise. I think that applies to our modern situation because if we were true to our own moral beliefs, we would not give in and give up, we would fight for what we believe and stand by what we believe instead of believing some stranger about who we are and what we’re capable of.