20 terms

Oedipus Rex Review C

STUDY
PLAY
Why is Jocasta pleased at the news of Polybus' death?
If Oedipus' father is dead, and Oedipus did not kill him, then the prophesy was false, and seers are discredited.
What information does the messenger give Oedipus to put an end to his dread of the Oracle? How does this man know the truth?
The messenger explains that Oedipus was not the natural son of Polybus and Merope. A shepherd found Oedipus, who had been left to die with a skewer that pinned his feet together. This shepherd, one of Laius' men, gave the baby to the messenger, who in turn gave it to the childless Polybus.
What is the meaning of Oedipus' name? Why is this significant?
Swollen feet. The baby's feet were nailed together before he was given to King Polybus.
How does the messenger's information change the central question in the play?
Up until this point the question is "who killed Laius?" Now it is "who are Oedipus' parents?"
What does Jocasta fear Oedipus will learn if he continues to seek the truth of his parentage?
Jocasta clearly fears that Oedipus will learn that he is the son of Jocasta and Laius - that he did indeed murder his father and marry his mother.
Why is the shepherd so reluctant to identify Oedipus as the child he gave to the messenger?
To acknowledge that Oedipus was that child would be to admit that he did not follow Laius' instructions.
What is the climax of this play?
Oedipus discovers he is indeed the son of Laius and Jocasta.
Explain the Chorus' statement, "All-seeing time discovered you unwilling." Why is this concept central to the play?
Even though Oedipus tried to escape his fate, it found him anyway.
What does the servant report is Oedipus' explanation for his self-mutilation?
He shouts that his eyes should not see anymore of the evil that he had created.
Oedipus believes that the gods hate him more than any other man. Does anything justify their hatred?
Oedipus is overly proud, but there is little else that apparently justifies the gods' hatred of Oedipus. He was simply cursed from birth..
How does Oedipus' cursed life speak to the central issue of the play?
This issue of why Oedipus was cursed speaks to the question: how much control do we have over our own lives? Regardless of Oedipus' good deeds and noble qualities, he was chosen to live out a terrible fate, but not because of any wrongdoing on his part. The Greeks felt the gods became angry with people who were guilty of pride, and Oedipus certainly was, so perhaps that justifies his fate in some way. He also attempted to escape the will of the gods through free will.
Why must Oedipus seek Creon's permission to go into exile?
Creon is now the king.
Besides exile, what else does Oedipus ask of Creon?
To give Jocasta a proper burial and to take care of his daughters.
Why is Oedipus concerned about his daughters' futures and not his sons'?
His sons are grown
How does Creon treat Oedipus in this final section.
Respectfully
hubris
pride, believing that one is as good or better than the gods
anagnorisis
moment of realization
perepetia
reversal, downfall
catharsis
emotional purification
hamartia
transgression, flaw
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