Shakespeare created a utopian society in his play, The Tempest. Utopian societies are meant to give an alternative way of living through social, political, and cultural methods. The word utopia was coined first by Thomas More is his publication of Utopia. Mores publication was from his imagination, but Shakespeare saw what was occurring around him in his world that he lived in. The Tempest takes place during a time when ones are pinned against uncontrollable situations such as, banishment, enslavement, and a weather storm.
As portrayed in The Tempest these two ideas merge and create a paradox within themselves as one’s “Utopia” causing another view that the same world becomes another’s “Dystopia” leaving the two to live in perfect suspension within reality. It can b... ... middle of paper ... ...ackles the personal involvement each individual has in society and how that affects the general consensus of what is deemed “perfect” and what is considered to be detrimental to the same civilization. In his play he exposes the “real world” as an imperfect interpretation of society as seen through the eyes of Prospero. While in contrast Gonzalo sees this “new world” as the perfect opportunity to right the wrongs of modern society, a new colony posed with the same problems, but unlike modern society, it solves them and therefore become a better world. The Tempest poses the ultimate question; can a perfect society ever exist?
Any thinking modern citizen knows what it means to fit round ideals into square realities. Therefore, it makes sense for Hamlet, one of our foremost fictional figures, to have trouble matching his internal ideals to the external world. In his introduction to the Norton edition of the play, Stephen Greenblatt points out that Hamlet, "seems to mark an epochal shift not only in Shakespeare's career but in Western drama." Greenblatt is referring to the dominance of Prince Hamlet's psyche over all aspects of the play's perspective and mood. Hamlet transports its audience into the Prince's mind and forces them to look at the world from the inside out.
Though King Lear might appear at first as chaotic in this regard as its titular character and the message/meaning of the play therefore uncertain, there is a predominant sense of order in its careful exploration of socio-political issues such as class struggle, tyranny by monarchy, and power-driven relationships. This criticism evidently influences Shakespeare’s manipulation of certain theatrical and literary devices within play, which in turn are used to further support the message of social equality and criticism of tyrannical monarchy. Dramatic and literary features such as plot, character, language and action complement this socio-political commentary and result from the tragic genre that Shakespeare has chosen. In turn, the genre and the devices work together to support the commentary that King Lear is trying to pass on to an audience; to reinforce the idea that Kings are also men and just as flawed, that men can also be Kings and that in death we are all equal. King Lear is a Renaissance tragedy and this particular form of the tragic genre defines how Shakespeare approaches the theatrical and literary tools that he uses.
Examination of specific characters and their corresponding role in the theatrical world encourages a deeper understanding of self-reflexivity of The Tempest; which highlights William Shakespeare’s struggle to relinquish his art. The scenes and language used by Shakespeare also help to reveal the play’s self-reflexivity. As the play reflects reality, it also reminds the audience that it is an artistic interpretation and not reality. This dynamic creates an interesting contrast between art and reality; which embodies the play’s significance as Shakespeare’s farewell to the theatrical world. Three of the main characters in this play are Prospero, Ariel and Caliban; these characters can be interpreted to represent significant roles in the theatre which are the roles of playwright, stagehand and actor.
The Tempest is a play about the power and dangers of creativity. Discuss. "From beginning to end the play-write gives prominence to the problems of dominion, freedom, political failure and of repetition." Like Russ Mc Donald I also believe that Shakespeare devoted his last comedy largely to the exploration of the shapes and effects that possession and the search for power can have on persons. The Tempest's central character, Prospero, is also crucial to this interpretation.
This highlights how new contexts and situations can stimulate discovery, as well as encourage one to engage and adapt their values. At the time Shakespeare’s plays were being written and performed, England was an emerging global superpower, focused on expanding its borders. Colonialism and the philosophy behind it are explored by Shakespeare through Prospero and Caliban’s relationship; that of a European colonizer and a native inhabitant. Prospero believes Caliban should be grateful towards him for assuming rulership of the island and educating him, raising Caliban above his ‘savagery’; “A thing most brutish, I endowed thy purpose”. The dramatic irony of this statement expresses the ignorance of Prospero’s attitude towards Caliban.
Prospero needs Ariel and Caliban in order to have power, and so throughout ?The Tempest?, contrary to our beliefs at the beginning of the play, we begin to see that the main protagonist of power within ?The Tempest? is not, in fact, Prospero. Shakespeare presents many kinds of power in ?The Tempest?. He demonstrates the control that Prospero has over Miranda using love, and also different kinds of power between master and slave. Sometimes the master and slave power is subverted, such as at the beginning of the play, when the boatswain takes control.
This can be seen as a highly effective means of keeping order and perpetuating the power structures already existing in society. We can read literature as expressions of universal themes and investigations into human nature and the human conditions, but we can also give alternative readings that question natural assumptions and investigate the 'silences' in a text. In essence, reading the 'politics' of the play. A traditional reading of The Tempest would position Prospero as the victim of unjust betrayal, who stranded on an island with his beautiful, virtuous daughter, uses his magical powers to right the wrong done to him. It is the old story of the 'rightful' ruler who is disposed by the bad guys, but manages to get back his power and live happily ever after.
With this discovery in mind, Miranda undergoes a change in values; specifically her undying loyalty to her father as the situation positions her to side against him. This highlights how new contexts and situations can stimulate discovery, as well as encourage one to engage and adapt their values. At the time Shakespeare’s plays were being written and performed, England was an emerging global superpower, focused on expanding its borders. Colonialism and the philosophy behind it are explored by Shakespeare through Prospero and Caliban’s relationship; that of a European colonizer and a native inhabitant. Prospero