The Wrath of the Mistreated

Good Essays
Shylock, a character in the play The Merchant Of Venice by William Shakespeare is a character of many emotions. Throughout the whole story Shylock is bitter towards all of the other characters. However, this spite and hatred is not undeserving, the other characters ridicule him without a good motive. Shylock puts himself in a position where he is able to be the antagonist and the protagonist of the situation throughout the whole story. By putting himself in this position he causes the other characters, specifically Antonio and Bassanio, even more trouble than they had before. Shylocks goal is not for him to succeed but for every other person around him to make their own demise. Shylock sets himself up to be both the antagonist and the protagonist through causing people to react to his very selfish actions, which ultimately cause his downfall.
Shylock, without even realizing what he is doing makes himself the antagonist and the protagonist by using his wealth. He is the savior of the whole play when he gives Bassanio a loan of three thousand ducats so he can have the opportunity to marry the stunning princess Portia. The agreement the men come to if the debt is not repaid is “let the forfeit be nominated for an equal pound of your fair flesh” (Shakespeare, I, iii,). At this point in time shylock controls the situation of most every key character in the play with the exception of Portia. Although Antonio and Bassanio do not like the agreement because they are nearly positive that Antonio will not pay they do not have a choice to accept these terms. Also, at the end of the play, Shylock controls every main character when they are in the courthouse. He is planning to kill Antonio if Antonio’s friends make even the simplest of mista...

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...ingly leaves the Christians alone. When Shylock overcomplicates thing he ruins every chance that he has to be successful by being selfish.
Although he is the character subject to the most internal and external issues, Shylock does not make any of his bad situations better for himself. First Shylock could have tried to make friends with the Christians but instead he retaliates to their comments and they end up being in a sort of religious war. Next when Shylock loses his daughter Jessica he does not try to find her but wishes she would go to hell for the pain she has caused him. He has many opportunities to make the most of the situations he is given but, shylock being the self-centered man he is, hurts himself in a poorly thought out plan to benefit him self. The reason Shylock becomes the sad, lonely old man that he is cannot be blamed on any one but himself.