The expression hero hails from a Greek term meaning somebody who faces adversity, or shows courage, facing danger. However, often he faces downfall besides. Whenever a hero confronts downfall, he's recognized as a tragic hero or protagonist. Aristotle, the Greek philosopher, characterizes these performs or stories, when the main character is a tragic hero, as tragedies. Here, the hero confronts his downfall whether considering fate, or by his own error, or some other social explanation.
Aristotle describes a tragic hero as “a individual who must evoke a feeling of pity and fear into the audience. He's considered a man of misfortune which comes to him through error of judgment.” A tragic hero’s downfall evokes emotions of shame and fear among the audience.
Traits of a Tragic Hero
Here we've fundamental characteristics of a tragic hero, as explained by Aristotle:
- Hamartia – a tragic flaw that triggers the downfall of a hero.
- Hubris – exorbitant pride and disrespect the normal purchase of things.
- Peripeteia – The reversal of fate your hero experiences.
- Anagnorisis – a moment in time when hero makes a significant development in tale.
- Nemesis – a punishment that the protagonist cannot avoid, often occurring due to his hubris.
- Catharsis – feelings of shame and fear experienced by the audience, the inescapable downfall of protagonist.
Examples of Tragic Hero in Literature
Example # 1: Oedipus,Oedipus Rex (By Sophocles)
Aristotle has utilized their character Oedipus as an ideal exemplory case of a tragic hero, as he has hubris so that he is blind to the truth. He won't listen to smart guys, such as Tiresias, whom predicts that Oedipus has killed his father, Laius. He could be tragic because he struggles up against the forces of their fate, and pitiable due to his weakness, which arouses fear into the audience. Thus, Oedipus is a great exemplory instance of the tragic hero, as he caused their own downfall, falling from their own estate and dealing with undeserved punishment.
Example # 2: Prince Hamlet, Hamlet (by William Shakespeare)
Hamlet is the prince of Denmark, a person of high social status and noble by delivery. He could be very nearly driven to madness by their father’s tortured ghost, who convinces him that Claudius is in charge of their father’s death, which he's got committed treachery. Hamlet then makes a plan to simply take revenge on their father’s killer, but he is blinded by his hamartia, neglecting their relations with other family members – Ophelia and their mom Gertrude. Hamlet’s hamartia is his constant contemplation and brooding, which causes him to delay, which finally results in his destruction. By the finish, Hamlet also falls in a bloodbath, touching the hearts of market by highlighting the most primal fear, death.
Example # 3: Romeo, Romeo and Juliet (by William Shakespeare)
Romeo is also a very good exemplory case of a tragic hero. He's a man of high social standing, whom falls in love effortlessly with a woman whoever family holds animosity towards his own household. Romeo’s tragic flaw is initiate thinking on his fate instantly. Juliet acts like a dead individual, and Romeo thinks the lady in fact dead. For that reason, he kills himself. Whenever she wakes up and views him dead, she additionally kills herself. Therefore, it is really not just fate, but in addition their actions and alternatives that bring their downfall and death.
Example #4: Davy Jones, Pirates regarding the Caribbean (by Irene Trimble)
Davy Jones is a modern example of an average tragic hero. He is essentially a sea captain, whom falls in deep love with the sea goddess, Calypso. But Calypso breaks Jones’ heart, making him enraged, tragic, and bitter. He grows into a combination of a humanoid and octopus, and leads their savage team on raids in whole ocean on his ship, the Flying Dutchman. At first, he was pretty good, but their beloved breaks his heart that turns him into bad man. In the course of time, Will Sparrow kills him. Jones’ hamartia usually he could be a broken-hearted hero, who suffers at the hands of their beloved, Calypso.
Purpose of Tragic Hero
The purpose of a tragic hero is to evoke unfortunate thoughts, such as for instance shame and fear, which makes the viewers experience catharsis, relieving them of the pent up feelings. The tragic flaw regarding the hero causes their demise or downfall that in turn brings tragic end. Thus giving knowledge to the market to avoid may be inside their each and every day lives. The sufferings and fall of a hero, arousing emotions of shame and fear through catharsis, purges the audiences of these thoughts, to transform them into good human beings and good citizens.