Oedipus the King- Metaphors
“«Light versus Darkness
Knowledge is characterized as a burst of light which contrasts the darkness of ignorance.
At the beginning of the play, and towards the fourth episode, we notice the “darkness”, the lack of knowledge that Oedipus has toward mostly everything that is surrounding him.
When Oedipus learns the truth, it “bursts” into light. The metaphor of light represents truth and knowledge.
“«Sight versus Blindness
A reference to this metaphor occurs early in the play, when Oedipus falsely accuses Tiresias and Creon of conspiracy.
“So this is what he wants, Creon the loyal, Creon so long my friend! Stealing up to overthrow and snatch!” (page 22).
“XTiresias responds by using the same metaphor: “I’m blind you say; you mock at that! I say you see and still are blind – appallingly: Blind to your origins and to a union in your house.” (pg 23)
Thus the idea of sight is critical in Oedipus the King. Though Tiresias is physically blind, he sees the truth from the beginning, while Oedipus, who has physical eyesight, is blind to his fate.
“«”Oh, look upon the city, see the storm that batters down this city’s prow in waves of blood” (pg 5)
The priest is comparing the bad situation of Thebes to a storm that attacks at any moment and leaves behind severe damages.
“«”Now smiled upon by all, saluted now, now drawn aside by suitors to the King, my ear their door to hope”
What Creon is comparing here, is his ears to the citizens’ door to hope, meaning that he has the kind of power that makes people hope to achieve something from their request that they submitted to Creon.
“«”You called me here, I never would have come”
Tiresias is actually trying to let him understand that Oedipus is the one who is pushing himself to the truth even though it’s not favorable!!
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