Miranda's schooling in The Tempest shows the audience the conflicting arrangement white women in the Shakespearean drama as well as Shakespearean times are forced to act within. Paul Brown points out that "the discourse of sexuality…offers the crucial nexus for the various domains of colonialist discourse" (208) and the conduct in Prospero manipulates his followers' sexuality is the mainstay of his power. The Miranda-Prospero relationship servers to represent a sort of patriarchy, which is unarguably the system many Renaissance women and women of Shakespeare's time found themselves in. It is thus unsurprising that Prospero controls Miranda and her sexuality as well. The system of patriarchy is demonstratd again and again throughout the play. For example, we see that Prospero's wisdom, magic, and education of Miranda, as well as his civilizing of Caliban demonstrates a system of authoritative love. There is no question that Prospero loves and wishes to protect his daughter; for example, Prospero continuously reiterates how much he cares for Miranda. However, at the same time, he exhibits enough power over her to be considered a patriarch. Prospero's authority over Miranda is so great that she cannot do anything but follow her father's wishes; it almost appears as if she has no choice in the matter for she, like Ariel and Caliban, can also be subject to Prospero's magical control. However, it appears that upon a closer study of this, we see that, patriarchalism makes specific, and often apparently contradictory demands of its "own" women, which can often cause confusion and problems for the woman involved.
Miranda, as a character in Renaissanc...
... middle of paper ...
... Prospero: Twelve year since, Miranda, twelve year since,
Thy father was Duke of Milan and
A prince of power.
Miranda: Sir, are not you my father?
Prospero: Thy mother was a piece of virtue, and
She said thou wast my daughter; and thy father
Was Duke of Milan, and his only heir
And princess no worse issued.
Brown, Paul. This thing of darkness I acknowledge mine: The Tempest and the discourse of colonialism." New York: Dollimore and Sinfield, 1985.
Kermode, Jack. Political Shakespeaere: New Essays in Cultural Materialism. Boston: Manchester University Press, 1985.
Lamming, George. The Pleasures of Exile. London: Allison and Busby, 1984.
Mies, Maria. Patriarchy and Accumulation on a World Scale. London: Zed Books, 1986.
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