Tragedy
Tragedy
 is a dramatic narrative in which serious and important
actions turn out disastrously for the protagonist, who
is also known as the tragic hero.
The Tragic Hero
 The classical tragic hero is a person of great
importance to his/her state or culture.
 He or she is conventionally noble and of a high
member/leader, the ruler or an important standing in
his/her society.
The Tragic Hero
 The moral health of the state (in this case, the tribe) is
dependent on that of its hero, and so the tragic story of
the hero and the tragic story of the state are
connected.
The Tragic Hero
 Tragic heroes are mixed characters, neither
completely good nor bad, yet “better” and “greater”
than everyone else in the sense that they are of higher
than ordinary moral worth and social significance.
The Plot
 The plot of tragedy traces the rising of the hero, when a
disastrous event, also known as reversal, sends him or her
from the heights of happiness to the depths of misery. This
fall usually comes as a consequence of a tragic flaw in the
hero’s character and /or a moral weakness.
 The fall may also be a product of the hero’s pre-determined
destiny or fate. The gods may have prophesized this fall.
The hero’s tragic flaw, sometimes in the form of a strong
passion (classically, hubris or excessive pride or selfconfidence), may cause the hero to disregard divine law
and/or try in vain to escape his/her fate.
The Tragic Hero
 The tragic hero may experience a supreme moment of
recognition of the truth of his situation or identity.
The tragic hero is supposed to move us to pity because,
since he is not an evil man, his misfortune is greater
than he deserves. However, his story may also move us
to fear or terror because we recognize similar
possibilities in ourselves.
The Tragic Hero
 Greek theorist Aristotle also asserts that these feelings
of pity and fear are purged through catharsis, which is
the moment when an audience is left feeling, not
depressed by our hero’s actions but relieved and often
left feeling better about ourselves.
 (Catharsis is the purging of emotions or relieving of
emotional tensions.)
Okonkwo
 Analyze Okonkwo as a tragic hero.