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Word Count: 874
The philosopher Aristotle gave the very first definition of a tragedy Because of Poetics lecture notes taken by one of Aristotles students one knows the definition of a tragedy From what we know to be true in history scholars furiously debated the definition of a tragedy These scholars discussed the best tragedies and the worst ones The scholars debated the definition and components of a tragedy The definition of a tragedy results in many interpretations Therefore thousands of years of furious debating yielded nothing and wasted precious oxygen However according to Aristotle the greatest tragedy is Oedipus Rex by Sophocles Aristotle must have held this tragedy in very high regard because the Poetics is based on Oedipus Rex What makes Oedipus Rex a tragedy To understand how this play is a tragedy one must examine the inner machinations of the Poetics the mindset of Aristotle and the glorious Golden Age of Greek civilization Oedipus Rex is a tragedy because it contains all the components as defined by Aristotle A tragedy must have a catharsis to take the readers soul through a roller coaster ride of feelings An analogy of a dark cloud of rain cleansing a house makes a good comparison for the catharsis This sentence symbolically represents the catharsis or cleansing of the emotions that arouses pity or fear in a tragedy Aristotle XIV 1 The catharsis in Oedipus Rex is when Oedipus is as piteous as he appears in the final scene with Creon Weigel 1601 The placement of the catharsis results in many contradicting emotions flurrying These emotions all mix to represent the catharsis The emotions create a whirlwind of feelings At first the people of Thebes think he is god and then Jocasta commits suicide These actions represent the spectrum of emotional discharge To capitalize on the readers emotions the catharsis should be used in concordance with recognition and reversal These effects leave the reader
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