Much Ado About Nothing as an Exploration of Conformity In Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing, Beatrice and Benedict rant about marriage for most of the beginning of the play, while Claudio raves about how wonderful it will be being married to Hero. Yet in the end, Claudio exchanges his marriage to Hero for an opportunity to bash her in public, while Beatrice and Benedick marry despite that they were mortal enemies for most of the first three acts. How did the situation swing around to this degree? Beatrice and Benedick had been using the most extreme metaphors to demonstrate their scorn of each other and of marriage, and Claudio had been doing the same to demonstrate his love of Hero. Not only did none of these three characters mean what they were saying, but meant the reverse, and the people that plotted to bring them together or pull them apart plotted because they understood on some level what each really wanted. Beatrice and Benedick seem to have had some relationship before the beginning of the book that ended badly. This suggests that the initial situation between Beatrice and Benedick was one of mutual attraction, not of the overt hate they seem to flaunt at the beginning of the play. Scorn of this magnitude is rare among people who dislike each other from the start, and seems very unlikely in a broken up couple. In addition, both Beatrice and Benedick turned out to be very willing to abandon their smear campaigns as soon as they are convinced the other is aching for them. It is ridiculous that one would abandon one's own principals to bail out a hated enemy in trouble. This makes clear that their attitude toward each other is an act. If this is so, what is the purpose of the act... ... middle of paper ... ...ther, and nearly kills an innocent woman. In a broader perspective, conformity can leave people walking aimlessly down the beaten path with no real direction except conformity, doomed to live yet another meaningless life in a society based on archaic principles. Works Cited and Consulted: Barton, Anne. Introduction. Much Ado About Nothing. The Riverside Shakespeare, 2nd ed. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co., 1997. 361-365. Lewalski, B. K. "Love, Appearance and Reality: Much Ado About Something" Studies in English Literature, 1500-1900 8 (1968): 235-251. Prouty, Charles A. Conformity in Much Ado About Nothing. New York: Books for Libraries Press/Yale University Press, 1980. Rossiter, A.P. "Much Ado About Nothing." William Shakespeare Comedies & Romances. Ed. Harold Bloom. New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 1986.
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Set in the sixteenth century, Much Ado About Nothing is revolved around the thought of love and marriage. Primarily, this is prevalent in the two main characters, Beatrice and Benedick. They have once been courted which suggests more maturity than the majority of couples in Shakespeare’s various plays. In the duration of the play, the violent language between Benedick and Beatrice is most evident through their ridicule. Both characters always speak critically regardless of whether they are talking to each other or out loud about one another. This is highlighted when Beatrice exclaims, “What should I do with him—dress him in my apparel / and make him my waiting gentlewoman? He that hath a / beard is more than / a youth, and he that hath no beard is less than a/ man; and he that is more than a youth is not for me, and he that is less than a/ man, I am not for him...
In Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing, there are the usual characters that show up in most of Shakespeare’s pieces. For instance the characters Hero and Claudio could easily be compared to Romeo and Juliet. Both Hero and Juliet are innocent, quite, and beautiful young women who fall in love instantly without conversing with the other person. Likewise, Claudio and Romeo decide to marry these women within twenty-four hours. Because of these characters’ lack of unique and interesting qualities, I am intrigued by Beatrice.
Much Ado About Nothing. The Riverside Shakespeare, 2nd ed. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co., 1997. 366-398.
Every day in our lives and everything we do involves some degree of decision making or choice selection either mental or physical. We start making choices and decisions from the moment we wake up everyday to the second we sleep. Some decisions we make are blatantly obvious to ourselves because of our need to reflect on the choices before choosing. However, most decisions we make throughout the day are made without much thought. We are even, quite often, unaware that we are making decisions due to habituation and preference. Before going further, we must define the terms free will, determinism and fate or destiny. Free will is the ability to choose. Furthermore, it is the power of making free choices that are unconstrained by external circumstances or by an agency such as fate. Fate, or destiny, can be defined as the inevitable events predestined by this force. However, there is a better position to take when it comes to arguing against free will; and that position, or belief, is called determinism. Determinism states that the conditions at one moment are the necessary result from the “previous” conditions. Simply put, every effect has a cause, every action is predetermined. Unlike fate or destiny, it does not mean the future is already established. It is one thing to say that our choice is caused. It is another thing to say that we do not choose, and fate says, we cannot choose. This is definitely an endless argument given that it is a matter of personal opinion with no facts involved. However, free will definitely seems like the most plausible standpoint. We do have free will.
This brings us into a topic that has been very controversial through time, free will. Free will is a concept that becomes null for Sociologists for they claim that humans are controlled by biological reactions and their environment. For example, sociologists would argue that if you happen to have the desire for ice cream and you eat some, you are not taking this decision freely. There is an internal force that drives you to eat ice cream and you cannot overcome this desire. I disagree with this point. Yes, there may be an internal force that sparks the desire for ice cream in us. However, we are the ones who decide to eat it or not. Moreover, God gave us the ability to make our own decisions, he did not programmed us to act in a certain way. Therefore, humans actually have a mind in which free will
Free will is the term for a particular way of thinking in which an individual chooses to act or behave without exterior input from a variety of alternative actions (O’Connor, 2002). For example, if a person was waiting to cross the road, they have the ability to either wait until the green light signals
Imagine starting your day and not having a clue of what to do, but you begin to list the different options and routes you can take to eventually get from point A to point B. In choosing from that list, there coins the term “free will”. Free will is our ability to make decisions not caused by external factors or any other impediments that can stop us to do so. Being part of the human species, we would like to believe that we have “freedom from causation” because it is part of our human nature to believe that we are independent entities and our thoughts are produced from inside of us, on our own. At the other end of the spectrum, there is determinism. Determinism explains that all of our actions are already determined by certain external causes
A large portion of Shakespeare’s “Much Ado About Nothing” greatly focuses on the relationship between Benedick and Beatrice: two characters who provide comedic relief and romance. Even from the beginning of the play, their bantering rapport shows a deep connection, a fact known by everyone in the play but them. Their relationship between each other is what strengthens each other’s character, and the more the story progresses, the more we see the changes of each character. Both are very round characters, since they both go through a huge transition. This is most evidently seen in Benedick, who shows a huge change due to his new found romance, because his love for Beatrice not only changes his
Shakespeare’s Much Ado about Nothing is, on the surface, a typical romantic comedy with a love-plot that ends in reconciliation and marriage. This surface level conformity to the conventions of the genre, however, conceals a deeper difference that sets Much Ado apart. Unlike Shakespeare’s other romantic comedies, Much Ado about Nothing does not mask class divisions by incorporating them into an idealized community. Instead of concealing or obscuring the problem of social status, the play brings it up explicitly through a minor but important character, Margaret, Hero’s “waiting gentlewoman.” Shakespeare suggests that Margaret is an embodiment of the realistic nature of social class. Despite her ambition, she is unable to move up in hierarchy due to her identity as a maid. Her status, foiling Hero’s rich, protected upbringing, reveals that characters in the play, as well as global citizens, are ultimately oppressed by social relations and social norms despite any ambition to get out.
As previously stated the topic of free will has long been a debated issue of which philosophers have disagreed on. This is due in part to the three positions that philosophers take on, which are the—libertarianism, skepticism, and hard determinism views. Libertarianism (not political) holds the view that everyone no matter who the individual is has free will, and that casual determinism or the idea that every state of the universe is caused by prior states is completely false. The main question that surrounds the libertarian view then is how exactly free actions arise, which is drawn from the premise that the libertarian not only refutes the notion of casual determinism, but would also seem that free actions could in no way be uncaused let alone be a product of chance. Within libertarianism, philosophers have long debated the question of how free actions arise, this is because the libertarian not only rejects casual det...
For many years philosophers have discussed and argued on the subject of free will; whether or not we have free will to determine our course in life or whether our actions are being determined by forces outside of our control. A precise arguer would have to be Peter van Inwagen who although says we do have free will, he goes into depth about its relationship to determinism. I would have to agree with his choice that we can deny the claim that all our choices are determined and hold that we do have control over our choices even if we are still left with a mystery in the end.
Freedom, or the concept of free will seems to be an elusive theory, yet many of us believe in it implicitly. On the opposite end of the spectrum of philosophical theories regarding freedom is determinism, which poses a direct threat to human free will. If outside forces of which I have no control over influence everything I do throughout my life, I cannot say I am a free agent and the author of my own actions. Since I have neither the power to change the laws of nature, nor to change the past, I am unable to attribute freedom of choice to myself. However, understanding the meaning of free will is necessary in order to decide whether or not it exists (Orloff, 2002).
Since the foundation of philosophy, every philosopher has had some opinion on free will in some sense, from Aristotle to Kant. Free will is defined as the agent's action to do something unimpeded, with many other factors going into it Many philosophers ask the question: Do humans really have free will? Or is consciousness a myth and we have no real choice at all? Free will has many components and is fundamental in our day to day lives and it’s time to see if it is really there or not.