Vivian Journal 9
I think that we can make a better argument for Nora than for Othello but I still see Oedipus as the shining example of tragic.
Nora was a noble person and she had noble pursuits. The audience and Nora experience a catharsis of types when she comes to her realization and walks out. The story is serious and realistic. The only problem I have with labeling A Doll’s House as a tragedy is that I do not see a reversal of fortune for Nora. I cannot see her leaving and becoming an individual as a person as a bad thing. I don’t think it makes her a bed person and I don’t think it removes her nobility.
Othello starts as a warrior who is supposed to protect people and that role is completely reversed when he kills Desdemona. His nobility is lost after this and he dies in the end as a last resort. He is noble in position and has the tragic flaw of jealousy. The story is serious and the audience is somewhat emotionally cleansed as are most of the characters.
Oedipus obviously falls from nobility and goes from good to bad. He begins as noble by position and has a noble pursuit to save his kingdom. He then fulfills his fate by killing his father and sleeping with his mom which brings him down. He also is rude to those who try to help him like the oracle and the shepherd which shows that he is changing. The story is serious and ends with a catharsis for the characters. He is pitiful and has a tragic flaw which is arguably his ignorance or his stubbornness.
From this information it’s obvious that Oedipus is the only character that follows every aspect of tragedy. The others share some aspects of tragedy but they are never complete. I do, however, think that every play could fit under the modern definition of tragedy.