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Aristotle has long ago delineated a renowned definition of a Tragic Hero as an honourable protagonist with a tragic flaw This definition had been conveyed through time from Euripides in ancient Greece to Jean Anouilh in 1940s France In order to assess the degree of tragic heroism in both Euripides Medea and the modern Anouilhs Antigone it is essential to reminisce upon this definition with its further details as will be clarified later on By discussing the moral flaw the role of foreshadowing and of dramatic irony used by the authors in both plays the pattern of developing tragedy could be easily recognized and evaluated Even though both protagonists appear to be tragic in the end Medea murders her own children while Antigone commits suicide it is important to note that their tragic heroism is diverse due to the significant distinction between the character traits of the heroines While passion drives them both Medea is experienced wise and cunning whereas Antigone is portrayed as young na and desperate to make a difference The best type of tragic hero according to Aristotle exists between these extremes a person who is neither perfect in virtue and justice nor one who falls into misfortune through vice and depravity but rather one who succumbs through some miscalculation Consequently the hero has a moral flaw for example in Medea Euripides depicts a woman driven to violence because of her intense suffering It can be inferred that Medeas characters hamartia is uncontrolled passion and a manner of speaking without thinking Euripides protagonist employs the art of rhetoric and with the help of effective diction he accentuates her past nobility intertwined with her flaw the extremist infatuation Medeabut when she is wronged in her marriage bed no creature has a mind more murderous l265-66 This phrase as well as being an emotional ending to her speech one of the arts of rhetoric Euripides use of murderous mind emphasizes
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