Differences in Philosophizing Leadership

When comparing the ideal leaders of Socrates and Plato from The Republic and the leaders found in the works of Sophocles, one finds that they are very different. We see leaders in the works of Sophocles such as Oedipus and Creon. Creon was clearly not chosen to lead Thebes because he was the most qualified candidate but that he was next in the bloodline after the deaths of Oedipus, Eteocles, and Polynices. After seeing his ways of dealings with his cities issues, it is clear that he would not fit the bill for a leader in The Republic. He is not wise because he is stubborn and unmoving about the decisions he makes until it is too late and he refuses to follow the advice of the supposed wise man, Tiresias. He not only causes pain for himself, but for the entire city. Oedipus is selected to be a leader by the people somewhat for his wisdom because he solves the riddle of the sphinx; however, he is also superstitious and refuses to listen to other when he believes he is right. In either case, neither man had to go through the rigorous training that Socrates believes is necessary in order to be an effective leader. In fact, in my opinion, Socrates would probably believe that Tiresias would be better leader because he is a philosopher of sorts and he is able to foresee when there is danger lingering in the near future.


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