Comparison of Tempest and Dr Faust + Creative Writting Essay
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Compare and contrast the two plays in the light of this statement. To extend do you agree with it?
“You taught me language, and my profit on't Is, I know how to curse. The red plague rid you For learning me your language.”
“Both these plays explore the idea of language being at once a curse and a blessing – its creative as well as its destructive potential.”
In the classical world, the ability to express yourself verbally was inextricably bound up with the ability to think. Language, power, and identity are intertwined with each other. The way a person speaks or writes determines that person's power (social status) in the world. Language also affects the identity of people. In the Christian tradition language has a metaphysical origin. At the opening words of St John's Gospel: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with and the Word was God”. From this perspective the presence of language is the presence of God. Both in The Tempest and Dr. Faustus language challenges God's authority. In The Tempest language is used as curse what we can see from Caliban's speeches and Faustus rejects God's presense to indulge in his appetites.
The Tempest illustrates how power and language are related. In The Tempest, European nobles use different style compared to people of lower social status. The language that the nobles use in Shakespearean plays is called verse. Verse is a flowery and poetic type of language, as opposed to the blunt and choppy language of lower class people. Miranda says to Caliban, "I pitied thee, / Took pains to make thee speak, taught thee each hour...". Caliban then responded: "You taught me language and my profit on't / Is, I know how to curse." Caliban is a slave, yet he speaks in verse. Caliban can only speak in verse because Miranda and Prospero taught him. They did not teach Caliban to speak lower class language because they do