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Oedipus the King: Sight and Blindness

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Maya Pintar

on 27 March 2015

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Transcript of Oedipus the King: Sight and Blindness

Metaphorical Vs Literal
- Metaphorical can be harder to deal with than literal
- A person who is literally blind learns to deal with it and accept it
- One who is metaphorically blind is helpless until they come to realization of the truth
- Metaphorical blindness comes from ignorance, too much self pride or from the influence of others that purposely hide the truth
Blindness in Oedipus the Play
- Not only physical blindness shown in the play but metaphorical blindness as well
- Blindness is found in multiple characters
- Oedipus`s blindness is broken down into two components his ability to see (as he is not actually blind) but also his willingness to see
Teiresias' Blindness
- Physically blind
- Can clearly see the horror that is in Oedipus's past, present, and future
- He is mocked by Oedipus for his blindness but Tiresias predicts Oedipus will be blind, poor and shamed as well
- Teiresias'predictions initiates Oedipus' blindness
Jocasta and Blindness
- Metaphorically blind from the truth
-At the beginning Jocasta is aware of the prophecy but is blind to the fact that there is a possibility of it being fulfilled
- Towards the end Jocasta displays willingful blindness once the truth of her horrific past starts to unravel
- Purposely wanting to be blind influences Oedipus as she convinces him to stray from the truth of the prophecy's
Blindness and Oedipus
- Metaphorical blindness
- Oedipus's completely blind to the fate the gods placed upon him
- Solving the riddle of the Sphinx lead him to the throne of Thebes and his arrogance
- His blindness is evident when he believes he knows who killed Laius and places a curse on the murderer (himself)
- Oedipus does not choose to be blind to the truth
What is Sight and Blindness?
- The theme can be interpreted literally and metaphorically
- Metaphors occur when characters are blind to the truth
- Literally is when characters are physically blind
Oedipus the King: Sight and Blindness
By:Maya,Jocelyn,Hannah and Mackenzie
Blindness in Oedipus
- Physical blindness
- Teiresias prediction becomes true when Oedipus gauges out his eyes
- The physical blindness was a choice Oedipus chooses when revealed to the truth
- Becoming physically blind reveals the weakness and shame of Oedipus
- Teireias ignites the sight in Oedipus and Jocasta through his predictions into the future
- The Shepard reveals the truth about Oedipus` past to him and Jocasta
- Jocasta cannot bear to see the truth so she takes away her ability to see by taking her own life
- Oedipus takes away his sight of the situation by gouging out his eyes.

Importance of Seeking the Truth
Sight in Oedipus the King
- Too much arrogance can blind you from reality where life and the world is changing constantly. You can never know exactly what is in the future for you.
- If you constantly blind yourself from the truth it can lead to emotional and physical anxiety (Ie. Oedipus and Jocasta's downfalls)
- The truth allows people to grow and discover their true character


"Jocasta: Stop - in the name of God, if you love your own life, call off this search! My suffering is enough!
Oedipus: Courage! Even if my mother turns out to be a slave, and I a slave, three generations back,you would not seem common.
Jocasta: Oh, no, listen to me, I beg you, don't do it.
Oedipus: Listen to you? No more. I must know it all, must see the truth at last."
(1163-1170)

"Now my cursen the murderer, whoever he is a lone man unknown in his crime or one among many, let that man drag out his life in agony, step by painful step-" (280-283)
"What good were eyes to me? Nothing I could see could bring me joy" (1471-1472)
"Blind, lost in the night, endless night that nursed you! You can't hurt me or anyone else who sees the light- you can never touch me (425)
"O god-all come true, all burst to light! O light-now let me look my last on you! I stand revealed at last-cursed in my birth, cursed in marriage, cursed in the lives I cut down with these hands!"
The Poster
Full transcript