King Lear Essay

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Imagine you have seen either a Feminist, Marxist, or Aristotelean production of King Lear. You are to present a discussion of the Feminist, Marxist, or Aristotelean interpretation of the play and how it differs from your own. When looking at King Lear there are many interpretations to consider. One of these is looking at King Lear from a feminist point of view. After seeing a production which focused on this interpretation I now have a greater understand of what quotes and language techniques show this and also what staging elements emphasis this overall interpretation. King Lear is one of Shakespeare’s tragedies, therefore the representation of values in the text are likely to be taken from real life. Throughout the play women are represented as subservient to males. However, they also try to assert power. This power assertion eventually leads to their downfall e.g. Gonerill and Regan both die after receive control of the kingdom. In the production which I saw, I found that the two of the most important scenes were Act 1, scene 1 and Act 2, scene 4. Act 1, scene 1 is obviously the establishment of the play and therefore one of the most important scenes when looking at the position of women. The first thing I noticed in the production was the positioning of women during each scene. Whenever they entered the room they would always enter after the males. Also, the male characters, with Lear in the highest position, stood on a platform above females. Lear’s word choice when referring to Gonerill and Regan objectifies them. For example in the line “Our dearest Regan, wife of Cornwall” (1, i, 63) we see that the women are identified by their relationships with men. To indicate how the women are associated with men, the play had the females wearing all black with a sash the same colour as their husband’s costumes and for Cordelia no sash until France asks for

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