Explorations Of Powerplay Essay

1398 WordsJul 24, 20096 Pages
Power. It is a mysterious force that can control countries. It is a strength that perseveres through wars. It is an influence that can manipulate people. Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to “Explorations of Powerplay”, an exhibition sponsored by Paramount and Bandai, that represents the complex interplay between people and power in various works. Our first and main part of the exhibition is William Shakespeare’s Antony and Cleopatra. The tragedy explores how relationships between people can affect their relationships with power. Antony and Cleopatra is a perfect piece to explore powerplay, as it represents sexual powerplay, military powerplay and political powerplay. The sexual powerplay is between Antony and Cleopatra. Cleopatra sensual, sexual and forceful, uses her feminine wiles to control Antony in the palm of her hand. “If you find him sad/Say I am dancing: if in mirth, report/That I am sudden sick.” From Act 1 scene 3, displays her manipulative nature; that she lies without second thought to keep her lover interested. Cleopatra is displayed as the pinnacle of feminine power in seduction, sensuality and manipulation, which is echoed through out the play. Enobarbus’ barge quote from Act 2 Scene 2 depicts Cleopatra as an enchantress or goddess; as something any man should want. “I saw her once hop forty paces/and having lost her breath, she/spoke, she panted, that she did/make defect perfection and,/ breathless, power breathe forth.” This conveys her unworldly perfection, that where women should look unsightly when in exercise, Cleopatra displays it as dazzling and elegant. “Age cannot wither her, nor custom stale/ her infinite variety.” The reoccurring metaphor comparing sexual desire to hunger is shown here. Cleopatra is compared to a food, that will never go stale, a food that has an infinite variety to keep anybody in hunger for it. Antony,

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