My Response to Oedipus the King

Before reading this book, I had previously read an adaptation of it, called “The Gods Are Not to Blame” by Ola Rotimi, and despite knowing the events that took place I still enjoyed reading the Greek version of the story. The main difference between the two books were names and cultural differences (example; names of gods, names of cutlery, geography). Although, I will say that the Greek version was more violent and brass, this of course includes the violent nature of the people in the story and the normality of bloodshed in their daily lives.

I liked all the characters and especially loved their dynamics. My favorite duo would be Oedipus and Jocasta because even though they’re in a romantic relationship, you still catch small whiffs of Jocasta’s motherly love seeping out onto Oedipus, which I feel adds to the irony of the story. “What, Oedipus? What haunts you so?” (pg, 202) Although this quote can be said to be mainly out of respect and her duty as a queen to her king, I interpreted it as both motherly and respectful. My favorite character is easily Tiresias for simple reasons, he solved the mystery in an instant (technically) and is the wisest character. We see that a few pages after Tiresias have been introduced, he tells Oedipus who the perpetrator is, and I feel that the fact that he prophesized exactly what was going to happen to Oedipus while reading him like a picture was most impressive.” You mock my blindness? Let me tell you this. You with your precious eyes, you’re blind to the corruption of your life, to the house you live in, those you live with- who are your parents…”(pg, 183)

I found the structure of the story/play interesting and enjoyable. The dialogue varied from short one to two sentence responses to over a page long rant. The imagery used were quite good too, much easier to understand compared to a traditional poem. “Soon, soon you’ll scream aloud- what haven won’t reverberate? What rock of Cithaeron won’t scream back in echo?” Lastly, the language that was used. The language used were modern and we still make use of most of these words till date. This was probably a big factor in the comprehension of the multiple use of imagery and the overall plot and dialogue. Although, the way some words were used were different from the way most people would expect them to be used in a sentence. ” I will never shrink from the anger in your eyes”(pg,185). In a modern way of restating that statement it would be, I would never retreat (or back down) from the anger in your eyes.

Leave a Reply