Comparing Puck and Prospero

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Shakespeare’s characters of Puck from A Midsummer Night’s Dream and Prospero from The Tempest share some traits of speech and manipulation. The Tempest was written late in the author’s career. It features an older character tinkering about with the lives of the younger people around him. This brings to mind an easy comparison between Prospero and the writer himself. The character of Prospero is controlled by no one else. He is strong, he is in charge, and he is, in his own thoughts, wise. Like Prospero, Shakespeare is able to shape the events, emotions, and environment. Prospero can be seen a caricature of Shakespeare written by the author himself. Shakespeare was an older, experienced man, author, actor, and courtier. Prospero conjures up storms to achieve his means, Puck uses magic to create a dream world full of love, desire, and beguiled people, just as Shakespeare creates an atmosphere through his words. On the other hand, Puck is not in full control of his actions, he is guided throughout A Midsummer Night’s Dream by Oberon and must acquiesce to Oberon’s wises. Prospero, in many ways is a combination of the characters of Puck and Oberon. He holds magical abilities, he attempts to control matters of the heart, he is bent on getting what he wants, and he is manipulative. In many ways, Shakespeare embodies many of these characteristics as well. He can control the audience, he can persuade them into feeling different things at different times. He is, like Prospero and Puck, a magician. Puck and Oberon showcase a younger and less matured author. Their actions contain mischief and folly, easily accessible writing from a young author. It is a concept that Shakespeare would return to repeatedly. Their desire is... ... middle of paper ... ...uld have been a powerful tool to gain their attention at the end of what would have been a long evening at the theatre. The straightforward speaking to the audience would have pulled them back in and made sure that they understood the basic meaning of the play. Puck and Prospero explain their actions and try to convey to the audience what they are meant to take from the play. These final speeches from these characters would have memorable to a first time audience, something that could have a few lines easily repeated and retold to friends and family. There is a reason that these two pieces are fairly well known, even if one is not completely familiar with the works of Shakespeare. Puck's somewhat goofy plea for forgiveness and Prospero's more dignified and eloquent speech both call to simple human emotions. Works Cited the tempest, a midsummer night's dream
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