10H – 4 Dec 2014 – Antigone Day 1

Today you’ll read Antigone in small groups, up to the bottom of page 780. I’m having you read the play aloud in small groups rather than as a large group because (a) it’s not that difficult of a play (b) drama is meant to be heard, not read.

After you’ve read the material, you’ll discuss ALL of these questions and THEN choose one of the asterisked ones to journal about tonight:

  • * Which character garners the most sympathy (Antigone, Creon, or Ismene)? Why? Use specific examples from the text.
  • * Analyze Creon’s long inauguration speech. Look for the TONE (what’s the opening tone? How and when does it change during the course of the speech? Why?), APPEALS (how does he use logos, ethos, pathos), and METAPHORS (specifically the metaphor of the state/government as a ship in stormy seas. Analyze each of these components for effectiveness and meaning.
  • * How does the chorus/choragos feel about Creon’s decision? What about the Sentry? How do you KNOW? Give specific evidence from the text
  • Remember in Greek tragedy, the chorus/choragos TELLS the audience statements of theme. We don’t have to make them up, they’re right there. Identify TWO themes that the chorus/choragos names in this opening scene. Then, identify ONE “false” theme that Creon identifies. He’s the tragic hero, so we can’t trust his themes. They’ll all reverse by the end of the play, remember?
  • Starting just before the sentry’s arrival, the text repeats the word “man” or “men” a LOT. How many times? Why is this dramatic irony?

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