The Concept of Legitimate Authority

Literature / April 23, 2015 / No Comments /
This essay is an analysis of the concept of legitimate authority in “Antigone” written by Sophocles in 442 BC.

This paper is an analysis of the play “Antigone” written by Sophocles and its main themes. It discusses mainly the concept of legitimate authority and how it is portrayed in the play. In the play we see a very strong distinction between the laws of the gods and the laws of Creon, the king of Thebes. The play tells of Antigone and Ismene and their brothers Eteocles and Polyneices. It compares the play to “Letter from Birmingham” which was written by Martin Luther King, Jr. after he had been jailed in Birmingham, Alabama in 1963. The letter was a response to a statement made by eight white Alabama clergymen urging the black community to withdraw support from demonstrations taking place in Birmingham.
“Letter from Birmingham deals with a situation different from, but the same as, that in which Antigone found herself. The letter was written by Martin Luther King, Jr. after he had been jailed in Birmingham, Alabama in 1963. He had broken the law by participating in a demonstration against the treatment of blacks in the community. The letter was a response to a statement made by eight white Alabama clergymen urging the black community to withdraw support from demonstrations taking place in Birmingham. The statement of the clergymen appealed for law and order and common sense to be used in dealing with the racial problems faced by the blacks of Alabama. They believed these matters could be handled in the courts, and that the decisions made by the courts should be obeyed. They deemed the demonstrations, some of which were being lead by outsiders as unwise and untimely.”


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