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Classical vs Modern Tragedy

Comparing Steve Irwin as a modern tragic figure to classical tragic heroes such as Oedipus.
by

Hannah Bates

on 4 April 2013

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Transcript of Classical vs Modern Tragedy

Classical vs Modern Tragedy What is a classical tragedy? A classical tragedy is an element of drama where the hero plummets from prosperity to suffering because of a catastrophic flaw (like hubris). A tragic hero is a man from noble birth who, because of his tragic flaw, is suffering by the end of the story. Oedipus is a tragic hero because he was "blinded" by his ego. Oedipus' downfall is similar to the downfall of Steve Irwin because they were both affected by their hubris. Both believed they were invinisble and could do/overcome anything. Steve Irwin ("The Crocodile Hunter") was an Australian wildlife expert and an important public figure. He achieved his worldwide fame from the television series The Crocodile Hunter, a wildlife documentary series. He and his wife also owned and operated Australia Zoo. Irwin died on 4 September 2006 after being pierced in the chest by a stingray barb while filming an underwater documentary film, Ocean's Deadliest. People around the world were shocked and dishearted to here the news of his death. Steve Irwin's death is very tragic because it was preventable. If he hadn't put himself in such dangerous situations, he would probably still be around today. Steve Irwin would not fit the classical definition of a tragic figure because of many factors. The risky situations that Irwin put himself in were involving dangerous animals that were filmed for the public. This completely different from the situations a classical tragic hero would put himself in, like killing others or fighting wars. The word tragedy has become less specific over the course of time. Modern tragedy has expanded from only those of noble birth, to ordinary people. Many modern tragedies include people dying or people killing other people for no reason. These would not be considered tragedies to the Greeks, who often killed for little to no incentive. Bibliography:

"Biography of Steve Irwin." IMDb. IMDb.com, n.d. Web. 03 Apr. 2013. <http://www.imdb.com/name/nm0410455/bio>.

Donovan, Susan. "The Tragic Hero." What Is a Tragic Hero. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Apr. 2013. <http://bookbuilder.cast.org/view_print.php?book=42569>.

"Welcome to The Crocodile Hunter Website." The Crocodile Hunter Website. N.p., n.d. Web. 03 Apr. 2013. <http://www.crocodilehunter.com.au/crocodile_hunter/about_steve_terri/>.
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