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JUSTICE SERVED What is the relation of the state to the individual Should obedience be paid to the will of the state or to the justice with which it conflicts If loyalty is required is it conditional necessary only part of the time And given that the state and the individual will inevitably disagree on some issues who suffers in the end Through their writings Plato and Sophocles outline two sides of this issue In Euthyphro The Apology and Crito Plato expresses a view of the state as flawed but necessary never straying from the logical analysis performed by his main character Socrates However in Antigone Sophocles offers a tragic gut-wrenching story that also looks seriously at the same issue There are notable distinctions within the works but the conclusions of the two figures are more strikingly similar than different After careful examination it seems apparent that the two authors use the same situation to relay their beliefs of the relationship between the individual and the state Sophocles believes that the unjust will ultimately be punished and the just will always suffer when a conflict between the gods and the state exists Plato believes similarly that the just must obey the laws of the gods before those of the state and endure the consequences that the state imposes The primary difference is that Plato highlights the necessity of the laws of the state whereas in the tragedy-drama the necessity of the law is not in dispute probably because it would detract from the emotional outpouring from the audience for Antigone and the state representative is a tyrant Beyond this philosophical insight from Plato both writers demonstrate how the state will never benefit from a conflict with the gods Greek writers seemed to adhere to a stringent standard of inclusion when they created their works as is such in the three works examined All characters play a specific role never overlapping bringing with them a message
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