Discuss how Shakespeare presents different kinds of madness in King Lear. Mitchell Wassink Madness is a common motif in Shakespeare’s King Lear, and makes itself known in various different ways throughout the play. Lear’s madness and the seeming madness of Edgar meld with the madness displayed by the evil acts of Edmund and the Fool’s controlled foolishness to create a rich, varied text. Shakespeare manipulates dramatic and literary elements to communicate the idea of madness effectively to his audience, and uses it to enhance and enrich the more important themes in the play. The books Aspects of King Lear by Kenneth Muir and Law and Love: The Trials of King Lear by Paul W. Kahn discuss Shakespeare’s implementation of madness in his work, as does Norman Maclean in his essay, The Madness of Lear, and Jessica Dunckel in hers, The Necessity of Reasonable Madness in King Lear.
Jealousy is a powerful theme explored in Othello that remains of concern in today’s society. Through Iago and Roderigo who are both motivated by jealousy and Othello who is subject to it, many dimensions of jealousy are explored. The play uses emotive imagery; it is filled with images of darkness, confusion and uncertainty which helps establish this theme Jealousy is what appears to destroy Othello. It is the emotion suggested to him by Iago, when he says, “O beware jealousy; / It is the green ey’d monster, which doth mock / that meat it feeds on”. Iago has noticed Othello’s tendency to insecurity and overreaction, but not even Iago imagined Othello would go as far into jealousy as he did.
Dramatic irony occurs when the reader knows something that one of the characters does not. Such is the case in “The Cask of Amontillado” as the story begins with Montresor stating “The thousand injuries of Fortunato I had borne as I best could; but when he ventured upon insult, I vowed revenge”(510). This statement sets up dramatic irony throughout the story as the reader knows Montresor has sworn revenge on Forunato, while Fortunato believes they are still friends. This irony is evident through the whole story as Montresor pretends to be friends luring Fortunato to his cellar where he would eventually trap and kill him. The irony enhances the brutality of the murder as the reader knows throughout Montresor is planning some revenge while Fortunato believes he is going to sample his friends wine.
This fact is seen not only in modern times, but also at various points in history, including in great works of literature. In the play, Julius Caesar, Shakespeare demonstrates, through Brutus, Caesar and Portia, the ways in which one small detrimental character flaw can rapidly lead to one’s demise. Julius Caesar, for example, had one flaw in his otherwise immaculate personality, that is consequently the cause of his downfall. Though the great Roman leader has many admirable qualities of a ruler, such as his intelligence and oratory abilities, his arrogance overpowers his other traits. For instance, when a soothsayer cautions Caesar to “beware of the ides of March,” Caesar’s supercilious character is exposed when he coolly replies, “He is a dreamer, let us leave him.
Shakespeare is a master at providing an audience with keen insight into the human psyche through the actions and words of his heroes, and even more so, his villains. Contained in Shakespearian plays are characters that are considered archetypes for much of today’s basis of judging a person malicious or malevolent. Two of the most infamous villains in all of Shakespearian literature are Iago in Othello and Claudius in Hamlet. Both Claudius and Iago are driven by immoral ambitions, such as jealousy. Unlike many of the "evil villains" in literature, Iago and Claudius are far more complex than may be seen at first.
He also tells the murderers that Banquo is blameworthy for their tragic, unhappy lives. After angering the murderers, Macbeth switches to a more sarcastic tone and manipulates the murderers so they will feel like they need to prove themselves men, worthy of Macbeth’s presence. By asking questions, Macbeth leaves a gap between him and the murderers and waits for them to fill it. He asks “Are you so gospeled/ To pray for this good man and for his issue/ Whose heavy hand hath bowed you to the grave/ And beggared yours forever? (3.1.98-101).
Shakespeare has used a metaphor here to describe the seriousness of the issue at heart. The war is described as a monster that opens his jaws and ensnaring people lives into abysmal darkness. The effect of metaphorical language entails to the reader the intelligence of King Henry in not only his choice of words but highlighting the consequences to the French king. It is through King Henry's intelligent choices that has made him such a successful and fearful leader by being not only being a fearsome warrior
William Shakespeare conveys a recurring motif throughout the tragedy ‘Othello’ of the power that Jealousy and Revenge have on influencing the characters decisions, and the danger of Appearance versus Reality. This motif is evident as Iago, the psychotic antagonist, performs a soliloquy during Act 1 Scene 1, where he explores these key concerns and main ideas of deception, betrayal and arrogance, which are typical of the play as a whole. Shakespeare uses thematic concerns and language techniques to show how Iago’s ambiguous personality and manipulative nature emphasise the main messages portrayed. Firstly, the power of Jealousy is used in the play to convey the motivation behind Iago’s vengeful plot and to foreshadow a betrayal later on: “We cannot all be masters, nor all masters cannot be truly followed”. Iago’s jealousy of Othello is shown by the envy of him being a master, In context, Othello was a Moor, the racial prejudice in the Elizabethan era was that a Moor was considered inferior to Venetian men; this would’ve made Iago insecure as he failed to be promoted by someone of a lower social class than him, thus leading to his cynical plan; “cannot be truly followed” this shows Iago’s pessimistic nature as he foreshadows his betrayal as one of deception, rather than directly abandoning Othello, telling the audience that Iago will follow him, but not faithfully, and with plan to deceive.
Thus conscience does make cowards of us all; And thus the native hue of resolution Is sicklied o’er with the pale cast of thought; And enterprises of great pith and moment, With this regard, their currents turn awry, And lose the name of action. ( pg , line 58) This clip would be an Oscar moment because this speech connects many of the play’s main themes, including the idea of suicide and death, the difficulty of knowing the truth in a ghosts unclear universe, it connects between thought and action. In addition to its crucial content, this speech is important for what it reveals about Hamlet’s mind. His passionate nature is complemented by a harsh logical reason, which works to find a solution to his madness. He
Shakespeare's Presentation of Othello as Responsible for his Own Downfall Shakespeare’s Othello consists of the themes betrayal, love and dishonesty. At the centre of this play is the tragic downfall of Othello at the hands of his so called friend Iago. In this essay I will be discussing the reasons for and against Othello being responsible for his downfall through looking at critical interpretations of his character and actions. In some ways you could say that Othello was highly responsible for his own downfall as he was easily manipulated by Iago showing him to be gullible and naïve. Iago manipulates Othello by making him suspicious through inference, “Ha I like not that”.