How the Characters in Much Ado About Nothing Learn to Love The title of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing has sparked scholarly debates about its meaning for centuries. Some say it is a play on the term “noting”, revolving around the theme of all sorts of deceptions by all sorts of appearances (Rossiter 163). Others claim it has more to do with everyone making a fuss about things that turn out to be false, therefore, nothing (Vaughn 102). Regardless of these speculations, there is something rather profound going on in the play that is worth making a big deal about: four characters in the play learn about love, and eventually, how to love. The four characters that learn the art of love are Beatrice, Benedick, Claudio and Hero. From the first viewing/reading of the play, Claudio and Hero seem to be the main focus. However, looking deeper into the entire play, and/or if you read any scholarship on Much Ado About Nothing, the true fascinating plotline involves Beatrice and Benedick. The main difference between these two couples involves how they learn the art of love. At the beginning of the play, Claudio is the first one out of all the lovers to express his affections for someone else; however, he seems to have the weakest grasp on the concept of love compared to everyone else. Claudio hints of his growing feelings for Hero when he asks Benedick what he thinks of her (I.i.161). Benedick, who has a disdain for marriage, is not very helpful to Claudio. However, he does manage to draw out of Claudio the reason for his inquiry: “In mine eye, she is the sweetest lady that ever I look’d on” (I.i.188). This first glimpse into Claudio’s heart reveals mostly shallowness. His first words... ... middle of paper ... ...ial Identity and Masculinity in Much Ado About Nothing” Upstart Crow 16, (1996): 31-47. Much Ado About Nothing. Directed by Kenneth Branagh. Samuel Goldwyn Company and Renaissance Films, 1993. Much Ado About Nothing. The Riverside Shakespeare, 2nd ed. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co., 1997. 366-398. Prouty, Charles A. The Sources of Much Ado About Nothing. New York: Books for Libraries Press/Yale University Press, 1950. Ranald, Margaret Loftus. “ 'As Marriage Binds, and Blood Breaks': English Marriage and Shakespeare” Shakespeare Quarterly 30, (1979): 68-81. Rossiter, A.P. “Much Ado About Nothing.” William Shakespeare Comedies & Romances. Ed. Harold Bloom. New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 1986. Vaughn, Jack A. Shakespeare’s Comedies. New York: Frederick Ungar Publishing Company, 1980
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These stories have a continued overlapping influence in American Fiction and have remained a part of the American imagination; causing Americans to not trust Native Americans and treat them as they were not human just like African Americans.
Pocahontas and the Powhatan Dilemma, provides a vivid and brutally honest account of the atrocities committed against Pocahontas and her people, unlike the popular animated film released by Disney. We will never know the absolute truth behind Pocahontas and her people, or the early settlers who emigrated to Jamestown, but one truth, however, remains evident. The English had succeeded in destroying an entire culture, rich with diversity. This may not have been what the English had intended at first, but it untimely was the result of their actions against the Powhatan people and the other tribes of the surrounding region. They imposed harsh conditions which included abduction, conversion, violence, and tributes which practically impossible to
In the fall of 1743, somewhere on the stormy Atlantic, a child was born to Thomas and Jane Jemison aboard the ship William and Mary. The little baby girl was named Mary, and although she was not aware of it, she was joining her parents and brothers and sisters on a voyage to the New World.
Lane, Robert. "'Foremost in Report': Social Identity and Masculinity in Much Ado About Nothing" Upstart Crow 16, (1996): 31-47.
Pocahontas, whose real name was Matoaka, was daughter of Powhatan, an important chief of the Algonquian Indians (the Powhatans) who lived in the Virginia region in the 1600s. While she is known for one of the most important decisions she made later in her life, the life she led before that is can be considered somewhat normal. A young girl, around twelve, Pocahontas was already introduced and aware of the world around her. English settlers arrived at Jamestown, or America, and almost immediately tensions rose between the English and the Indians of the Powhatan tribe. Pocahontas, being the daughter of the extremely powerful chief, took on the role of peacemaker; her own people loved and respected her immensely and she became well liked by the English settlers. In 1607, Pocahontas committed a heroic act that is still being researched today. Besides Captain John Smith, there are no other sources and/or evidence to conform the event. However, how the story is said to of happened is that Captain John Smith was leading an expedition when suddenly the Indians took him captive. The great chief forced Smith to stretch out on two large, flat stones and Indians stood over him with clubs as though ready to beat him to death if ordered. Suddenly, Pocahontas, only twelve, emerged and rushed to Smith’s side and laid her own body on top of his, appearing as if to sacrifice herself. As a result of Pocahontas’ brave act, she saved Smith and relations between the Indians and English continued to be generally friendly. (Fausz "Pocahontas"; Townsend “Pocahontas”).
The first factor that we shall discuss is the concept of ‘The Other’ and ‘Boutique Multiculturalism’ in order to understand how Disney's portrayal of Pocahontas in its film has misrepresented the actual historical account. The notion of The Other is defined as, ‘An individual who is perceived by the group as not belonging, as being different in some fundamental way’ and at the same time, ‘The Other is almost always seen as a lesser or inferior being and is treated accordingly’. (Melanie 2010). In the case of Pocahontas, she was considered The Other because her Native American world was considered to be fundamentally different to the explorers of the New World, who were physically similar yet different, speaking another language and using distinct signs (Coppi Agostinelli 2012:2). Through the understanding of The Other, we begin to understand how Pocahontas and her tribe are seen as The Other in the eyes of the colonists who considered themselves to be from a more civilised culture. Similarly for the Powhatan’s tribe, the unwelcomed colonists are considered to be The Other as they are seen to come from an unknown culture. As Melanie has suggested, The Other is often treated as the inferior group, especially in the face of what is considered to be backwards and tribal versus civilised and modern. According to Ono and Buescher, while Pocahontas’ story is meaningful in the Native American history, it is not told as such because of its inferiority in comparison to colonists’ account of the turn of events (2001: 25). From this brief look into the notion of The Other, we can begin to understand how Disney's portrayal of Pocahontas in its film has misrepresented the actual historical account.
Much Ado About Nothing. The Riverside Shakespeare, 2nd ed. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co., 1997. 366-398.
In “A Narrative of the Captivity and Restoration of Mrs. Mary Rowlandson,” Mary Rowlandson, a Puritan mother from Lancaster, Massachusetts, recounts the invasion of her town by Indians in 1676 during “King Philip’s War,” when the Indians attempted to regain their tribal lands. She describes the period of time where she is held under captivity by the Indians, and the dire circumstances under which she lives. During these terrible weeks, Mary Rowlandson deals with the death of her youngest child, the absence of her Christian family and friends, the terrible conditions that she must survive, and her struggle to maintain her faith in God. She also learns how to cope with the Indians amongst whom she lives, which causes her attitude towards them to undergo several changes. At first, she is utterly appalled by their lifestyle and actions, but as time passes she grows dependent upon them, and by the end of her captivity, she almost admires their ability to survive the harshest times with a very minimal amount of possessions and resources. Despite her growing awe of the Indian lifestyle, her attitude towards them always maintains a view that they are the “enemy.”
Pocahontas was the daughter of Chief Powhatan which made her an Indian Princess. When she was 12 years old, she saved a colonist named John Smith from being clubbed to death. After this, the relationship between the colonist and the Indians were at peace. Captain Smith sent many presents to Powhatan and the Indian woman gave food to the colonist. When John Smith left Jamestown because of a gunpowder accident, the peace between the Indians and the colonist weaken. In 1612, Governor Thomas Dale ordered for Pocahontas to be kidnapped, held for ransom that would be paid in corn by Chief Powhatan. While she was held captive, Pocahontas was baptized Christian and given the name Rebecca. Also while she was imprisoned, Pocahontas fell in love with John Rolfe, who then asked for her hand in marriage. Sir Thomas Dale and Chief Powhatan gave their consent and they got married in Jamestown on April, 1613. This marriage brought peace between the English and the Indians for many years. On 1615, John and Pocahontas had a child named Thomas. Pocahontas became the center of English society’s attention. She had then become Lady Rebecca Rolfe. Before going back to Virginia, Pocahontas became sick. She died on March, 1617, at the age of 21 in England. She was buried in the chapel of the parish church in Gravesend. Rolfe returned to Virginia, where he manufactured tobacco. I liked Pocahontas because she was the kind of person who was willing to do new things and she did the right thing even if no one would agree with her. She is famous for her actions (even if Disney exaggerated them) and I admire her strength and courage to stand up for what she believed in.
Years later, she married John Rolfe, a tobacco planter, bringing peace between the settlers and Powhatan. This was an enormous step, for Virginia needed “good publicity” to continue being funded. This was “fortified by the visit of the Algonquian princess” with her son and husband, proving that it was possible to spread Christianity to the natives. The royal court saw an opportunity and Pocahontas gained royal honor as she succeeded in connecting the two very contrasting
First, people affect the society around them for better or for worse. There is exceptional proof of this in the Bible. Genesis 2:8 says, “And the LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden; and there he put the man whom he had formed.” (KJV, Gen. 2:8) God placed Adam in the most fascinating place that has ever existed: the Garden of Eden. Everything was perfect; God even made Eve for Adam! But, Adam and Eve corrupted the beautiful world that they were created in. This alone is disproves the noble savage theory.