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Oedipus Rex: Catharsis, Hamartia, Hubris, and a Tragic Hero

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Amanda Piasecki

on 17 May 2016

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Transcript of Oedipus Rex: Catharsis, Hamartia, Hubris, and a Tragic Hero

Oedipus Rex: Catharsis, Hamartia, Hubris, and a Tragic Hero
What is a tragedy?
According to Aristotle, a
tragedy
is a serious play in which the chief figures pass through a series of misfortunes leading to a final devastating catastrophe.

The play must be divided into five parts:
The character is in a state of happiness, or at the height of their power
The problem or dilemma is introduced
Point of crisis is reached, but can still be averted
The disaster occurs
Grim consequences are revealed


Hamartia
Literally "missing the mark"
Signifies a
"tragic flaw"
, a misperception, lack of insight, or some sort of
blindness
that ironically results from the character's strengths.
The trait that makes the individual noteworthy is what causes the downfall
Peripeteia
Greek "sudden change"
Sudden
reversal
of fortune
Must be
observable
change in direction
Often a change from stability and happiness to destruction and downfall
The Tragic Hero
Necessary Components
Hamartia
Catastrophe
Hubris
Anagnorisis
Peripeteia
Catharsis
Hubris
Greek word
Selfish
Self-pride
Self-confidence
Arrogant
Can be a
hamartia
, lack of insight due to over-confidence in one's abilities
Anagnorisis
Greek "recognition'
The moment of tragic recognition
Protagonist discovers some important fact about himself, human nature, or his situation
Critics claim it is found in one single line of text
"
Turning downward
"
Typically occurs after the climax of the plot
The moment of
tragedy
Catastrophe
Catharsis
Emotional discharge that brings about moral or spiritual
renewal
or welcome relief
Aristotle: catharsis is marking feature and
ultimate end
of any tragic work
Allows for a
purgation of emotions
"A man doesn't become a hero until he can see the root of his own downfall." --Aristotle
Characteristics
Flaw or error of judgement
Reversal of fortune
Discovery or recognition
Excessive pride
Character's fate is greater than deserved
Must suffer more than he deserves
Doomed from the start
Noble in nature, but imperfect
Discovered fate with his own actions
Understand his doom
Story should arouse fear and/or empathy
Physically or spiritually wounded by his experiences
Major flaw or weakness, usually pride
Questions?
Full transcript