2010 HSC Question Analyse how the central values portrayed in King Richard III are creatively reshaped in Looking for Richard The work of Pacino is able to creatively place Shakespeare’s core ideals of humanist philosophy and the corrupting influence of power within a modern context, to reveal the perennial nature of the playwright’s central values. Shakespeare’s King Richard III (1592) identifies hereditary power as a potent force when the natural order is usurped. Al Pacino’s Looking for Richard (1996) sees power within a democratic time and thus presents it as privilege, not a God-given gift, yet the two maintain a similar view of the dangers of authority without balance. Shakespeare’s time demanded a negative portrayal of Richard’s humanist ideals, where blame is placed upon the King’s lack of Christianity for his abhorrent acts. Pacino, however, contends with a time where it is increasingly becoming the norm, but still contends with a society that can be considered moral devoid in some manners, and thus the importance of spirituality and thought is evident in both.
Perrine uses evidence from the poem, as well as pieces of Jerman’s work to argue in favor of an intelligent, shrewd Duke of Ferrara. As readers in the 20th century, we may view the Duke as a senseless and vain character. As the Duke confesses to the murder of his late wife, we immediately peg him as a bad guy, regardless of his title and nobility. Jerman judges the Duke similarly, adding that the Duke must be an idiot for confessing to the Count’s emissary (Perrine, 157). Perrine reminds us that Browning’s “The Last Duchess” is set during the 16th century during a time when nobility ruled over actions.
No character is spared from this deception, and therefore, it stands as a key theme in the play, “Hamlet”. Behind everything else in this play, there is a constant awareness of the murderous nature of the king. He breached his brotherly trust by killing his brother, and deceived his country by lying about the “rank” deed. “The serpent that did sting thy father’s life now wears his crown”. The murder was driven by lust for the queen and also a desire for power, two factors which remain with the king until the final moments in the play.
He commits murder and puts his entire kingdom in danger. Still, many of his evil acts are committed while he is under the influence of the Weird Sisters and Lady Macbeth, who are often considered to be the true villains of the play. At the end of the play, Macbeth realizes the evil he has committed and seems to feel sorrow for such. Because of this realization Macbeth is often viewed as a tragic hero, for tragic heroes almost always recognize the errors they have committed by the end of their stories and seek, in some manner, to atone for them. Macbeth is indeed a bit too complex to be categorised as a villain or a hero.
Cooney uses MacBeth to prove her thesis; whereas, Lee uses the character Bob Ewell to prove her thesis, and Shakespeare uses Tybalt to prove his argument. In the book Enter Three Witches, Cooney uses the character Lord MacBeth to prove that people who are power hungry and dislike others eventually meet a violent end. In the book, MacBeth is a king who gets his turn on the throne after the death of Scotland’s two previous kings. Lord MacBeth was a terrible and unfair king. He killed many people including innocent children in order to inherit his power.
Through the character Abigail Williams, he shows how people are willing to abandon their firmly-established values in order to conform with the majority and protect themselves. Those who refuse to part with their conscience, such as the character of John Proctor, are chastised for it. For this reason, the Salem witch trials raise a question of the administration of justice. During this time in the late 1600’s, people were peroccupied by a fear of the devil, due to their severe Puritan belief system. Nineteen innocent people are hanged on the signature of Deputy Governor Danforth, who has the authority to try, convict, and execute anyone he deems appropriate.
Antigone now has a death sentence, Ismene is not without punishment, and her fiancé is without a bride. Hindsight is surely the best perspective, but Antigone acted so rash there was no room left for another solution once the ball started rolling. It could be said Antigone’s reaction to the king set the motion of the consequences to this tragedy. On the surface Creon is to blame, naturally. He is the antagonist, it is he who sent Antigone to her death and brought trouble to the kingdom.
Guilt is a powerful feeling of remorse that takes control of your life, you always feel it, both mentally and physically. You will feel this remorse until you have admitted to it and have accepted what you have done and are willing to partake in your punishment. This is portrayed throughout the play Macbeth by William Shakespeare, where the main character commits various devastating murders. He must hide all of them in his quest for Kingship and to remain on the throne. As we can see through Shakespeare’s writing, power cannot produce happiness nor satisfaction.
Hamlet in his first soliloquy demonstrates his disgust that his mother has allied herself in love and in politics with her late husband’s brother, so soon after his death, “frailty, thy name is woman... to post with such dexterity to incestuous sheets”. Claudius is clearly established as the villain in Hamlet, murdering his own brother and then plotting to kill Hamlet. He lies and is deceitful toying with the notion that the appearance of things is not their reality. The audience is privy to the ‘reality’ of Claudius ‘deed’, and of his guilt, through an aside, climactically stating, “then is my deed to my most painted word. O heavy burden!”.
Some people use their power in a wrong way, and commit crimes because they want even more power that they already have. The blinding act marks a turning point in the play, because some actions like cruelty, betrayal, and even madness may be reversible, but blinding is not. Gloucester reflects the profound despair that drives him to desire his own death, after being blinded by Cornwall and Regan, “As flies to wanton boys are we to the gods; they kill us for their sport” (4.1.37–38). More important, he emphasizes one of the play’s principal themes, the question of whether there is justice in the universe. Gloucester’s philosophical musing here offers an outlook of miserable despair, he