Justified tradgedy

1076 Words3 Pages

In King Lear by William Shakespeare, Shakespeare recounts the tragedy of King Lear as he fails to acknowledge his tragic flaw and thus falls into tragedy and unintentionally brings others with him. Throughout the play, tragedy befalls undeserving people and they suffer greatly even though they have not done anything to deserve their suffering. Although Gloucester, Edgar, and Cordelia all live happy lives at the beginning of the play, they experience great suffering despite their inner goodness, a fact that highlights Shakespeare’s belief about the blindness of a justice that does not necessarily strike only the wicked.
Throughout the play, the good-hearted Earl of Gloucester suffers at the hands of his illegitimate child Edmund and the king’s evil daughters Goneril and Regan. Gloucester loves his son Edgar and has given him land as a result. Edmund wishes to take these lands from his brother but in order to do so he must make Edgar fall from his father’s good graces. Edmund hatches a plan and says, “A credulous father and a brother noble/ Whose nature is so far from doing harms/That he suspects none” (1.2.187-189). Edmund quickly and cleverly begins to place doubt in his father’s mind about Edgar and soon manages to falsely convince his trusting father that Edgar wants to kill him. By falsely believing his son Edmund, Gloucester believes his actions to bring Edgar to “justice” are appropriate and sends (search patrols to find his son in) order to do so. Gloucester also defends and helps King Lear although his two evil daughters told him not too. Gloucester cannot bear to see King Lear in such a miserable state and goes against his daughters’ wishes when he says, “I would not see thy cruel nails/ Pluck out his ...

... middle of paper ...

... to lower herself to her sisters standards as they exaggerated their love for their father in order to receive more land. In the end, Cordelia receives in just justice for trying to do the right thing throughout the play.
Throughout the play, Gloucester, Edgar and Cordelia all falsely receive justice even though they have benevolent hearts and never did anything to deserve the punishments they receive. Justice seems to strike the good more than the wicked in the play which helps show the blindness of justice. Justice has a negative connotation throughout the play which helps show Shakespeare’s disbelief in true “justice”. Justice seems to pick out its victims randomly and without sense showing Shakespeare’s belief that justice does not exist. Overall, the unfairness of the just suffering because of justice proves that true justice does not exist in society.

Open Document