Oedipus the King Test | Final Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What does Creon say Oedipus can do, if he finds proof Creon's lying?

2. What does Oedipus say the chorus' position will result in?

3. What does Oedipus ask about Polybus' death?

4. What nationality does Oedipus say the mother who raised him was?

5. What does Creon say Oedipus should do to get proof of Creon's innocence?

Short Essay Questions

1. When Oedipus is questioning Creon, why does he ask Creon how long it's been since Laius was killed?

2. What did the oracle at Delphi tell Oedipus about his parentage?

3. What is the chorus' attitude toward Oedipus, in his conflict with Creon?

4. Why does Oedipus question how his father could love him?

5. How does Oedipus react to Creon's self defense?

6. What is the chorus' foremost concern?

7. What is the shepherd's reaction to being questioned about the infant he gave away and being told that Oedipus is that infant?

8. How did Polybus die?

9. What is Oedipus's attitude toward his wife?

10. How does Creon seem to react to Oedipus leveling charges against him?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Discuss love and family relationships in the play.

1) Discuss Oedipus' love for his children. Why does this love only come out at the end of the play?

2) Discuss Oedipus' love for Jocasta in this play. Is this love in any way caused by their biological relationship?

3) Discuss Oedipus' love for Thebes. Does Oedipus truly love Thebes? How does Oedipus treat his "children," as he calls them at the beginning of the play?

Essay Topic 2

What is the natural order in Oedipus, and how does Oedipus upset it?

1) What causes the plague on Thebes? Is Apollo sending a plague as punishment, or is the plague a natural reaction to a disruption in the natural order?

2) What is the hierarchy of power in the play? What place to gods, rulers, men, women, and slaves have in this hierarchy?

3) What makes Oedipus's crime severe enough to upset the natural order?

Essay Topic 3

There is a saying that "ignorance is bliss." Discuss knowledge versus ignorance in the context of the play.

1) Why is Oedipus driven to seek out the truth about himself? Why isn't he afraid of what he might find?

2) Why does Jocasta not want Oedipus to find out the truth, even when she has clearly realized it herself? Could there be any benefit to the characters in continuing to live in ignorance?

3) In the end of the play, if Oedipus could go back and undo his own knowledge, do you think he would? Use evidence from the play to support your position.

(see the answer keys)

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