How Has Oedipus The King Changed

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Oedipus the King was first played to an audience in Greece over 2500 years ago, since then, the ways audiences think have changed dramatically. Audiences will find many parts of the play difficult to understand, such as having a lack of understanding of the backstory. Another major obstacle for a modern audience to understand is the underlying moral of the play, about how a person’s fate is unescapable. Even though the audience of the present may lack prior knowledge of the play, I believe with a few modifications we can make Oedipus the King more clear and relatable to the people of the 21st century. In this paper I will argue that the audience’s lack of prior knowledge of the Oedipus’ backstory and understanding of the moral can be changed…show more content…
Rarely are these films and TV series about the other stories of Ancient Greece like the story of Oedipus. Since Oedipus the King starts off in the middle of Oedipus’ reign of Thebes and there is no introduction of Oedipus’ past, the audience is left in the dark of what happened beforehand for most of the play. Most importantly the audience is left out of Oedipus’ fate which plays a vital role in the play. Since dramatic irony is a major part of the play the audience will not understand the ironic points in the play like how Oedipus comes out limping and his mission to find the murderer of the previous King of Thebes. In fact since the audience is oblivious to what happened before the play, it might lead them to believe that the play is a detective story instead of a story about fate. The audience’s lack of prior knowledge about Oedipus’ past will cause some difficulties understanding and enjoying the…show more content…
Since the audience might be oblivious to Oedipus’ story before watching the play, I suggest an introduction which explains Oedipus’ past. Like in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, this new introduction will give the audience a general idea of what’s going on and allow them to better understand the dramatic irony in the play. This introduction will also minimally impact the story of the play since it happens before the original introduction where Oedipus steps out of his palace to address his people. Another aspect where this introduction would benefit the play is that the audience is only told the events before the play, which will make the play more mysterious. The audience will be intrigued by Oedipus’ destiny and will speculate whether Oedipus’ truth be revealed to him. Another change I would make to the play is to change Oedipus’ personality to someone more deserving of his fate. Even though Oedipus might have many flaws such as being hot headed and arrogant, he is generally a good person. By making him a bit unlikeable, the audience will understand Oedipus’ fate more than if he was liked by everyone. Modern audience’s like to see endings where good prevails and if everyone in Thebes loved Oedipus, it would probably be hard for the audience to watch his fall

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