Essay William Shakespeare 's Twelfth Night

Essay William Shakespeare 's Twelfth Night

Length: 1034 words (3 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Better Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Twelfth Night is often portrayed with contrasting themes, however, it is arguable that Shakespeare emphasises concealment and flawed characteristics in many of the characters, as a reoccurring theme. In order to entertainingly explore the potentially controversial, oppressing and uncomfortable ideas, such as sexuality or secrecy, Shakespeare delivers them in a comedic approach or concealed manner. In particular, Shakespeare uses trickery to take countless forms in his plays which is often through the humorous accidental encounters of The Comedy of Errors. Consequently, the theatrical cause and effect of these mishaps will significantly vary and impact the storyline of the play; however, it all remains on Shakespeare intentions, for example, to create malice, perplexity, suspense or humour. In addition, the most recognised occurrence is in the romantic comedy Twelfth Night; Or What You Will, through the utilisation of disguise and concealment which is expressed within varied themes and motifs to portray misunderstanding, mistaken identity, affection or comedy.

Twelfth Night causes confusion, chaos and controversy between the characters which can reveal challenging messages to be portrayed and thus, appealing to the reader. Shakespeare presents these ideas in all of the characters of the play, either with their own experiences or an interaction. In particular, Shakespeare’s first accidental deception is demonstrated within the example of Viola, as she wanted to be employed by Orsino and yet, the end result is her becoming a man by the name of Cesario in Act 1 Scene II, as she asks the sea Captain to ‘Conceal me what I am, and be my aid’. The stanza and tone of dialogue Viola uses, suggests that changing her physical appearance is a...


... middle of paper ...


...e male costume. Therefore, due to this falling action scene, Shakespeare can sophisticatedly portray through the character Orsino, controversial themes of emotional disguise which was frequently suppressed in the 16th century.

Paradoxically there are many other problems, deceptions and illusions which also provide a comment on character’s behaviour which creates comedy. Yet, Disguise is one of the most significant themes within Twelfth Night; Or What You Will, as it is a crucial element to the plot of the play, which reoccurs from start to finish. To the extent that women’s parts in the play were played by boy actors which is historically evidential to the 16TH Century as women were meek and submissive but strong minded and passionate, thus the audience and readers found sophisticated viewing of women such as Viola and Olivia who were male actors disguised as women.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

William Shakespeare 's Twelfth Night Essay

- Twelfth Night revolves heavily around the shipwreck plot device to split apart the siblings Viola and Sebastian, leading to the development of a bizarre love-triangle and a case of mistaken identity. Besides the rather literal importance of the sea as the driving force for the play’s plot, water appears to resonate as a recurring theme throughout many scenes; specifically, it becomes a living representation for the emotional status of various characters, and woven within the ebb and flow of the tides, qualities such as fate, grief, death (imagined or real), and reflection churn amongst the brackish waters of the play’s symbolic ocean....   [tags: Love, Twelfth Night, William Shakespeare]

Better Essays
1581 words (4.5 pages)

William Shakespeare 's Twelfth Night Essay

- Shakespearean plays are renown for their combination of comedy and drama that both engage the audience as well as entertains. The mood of The Twelfth Night sways between drama and comedy, like most of Shakespeare’s plays, which alter between the two realms of theatre to produce depth, and in this case, deception. Feste’s final song gives the impression of a darker mood that dampens the celebrations of love between the play’s characters in 5.1, in which he questions the meaning of love and if it even exists....   [tags: Love, Twelfth Night, William Shakespeare, Jester]

Better Essays
1370 words (3.9 pages)

Essay about Deception in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

- Deception in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night In William Shakespeare's comedic play, Twelfth Night, a recurring theme is deception. The characters in the play used deception for a variety of purposes. Viola's use of deception involves her disguising herself as a man in order to obtain a job with the Duke of Illyria, Orsino. On the other hand, Maria, Olivia's servant, writes a letter to Malvolio in Olivia's handwriting to make Malvolio act foolishly because of his love for Olivia. While some use deception as a means of survival, others use deception to trick others and make them act foolishly....   [tags: William Shakespeare Twelfth Night Essays]

Better Essays
770 words (2.2 pages)

Essay on Feste in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

- Feste in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night In William Shakespeare's comedy Twelfth Night, it is ironic how many times the fool is said to be dishonest, when, in fact, his role proves entirely opposite. Though sometimes the characters do not realize his hidden messages, the reader can instantly comprehend Feste's figurative language, which is evident in every scene in which the fool appears. Whether he is singing to Orsino, arguing with Malvolio, or playing around with Viola, Feste always manages to sneak in a few symbolic foretokens before his exit....   [tags: William Shakespeare Twelfth Night Essays]

Better Essays
1065 words (3 pages)

Malvolio in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night Essay

- Malvolio in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night The problem involving Malvolio in Twelfth Night has been known for a long time but still very difficult. The gist of it is this. A lot of modern readers or spectators feel that the way in which Malvolio is treated is extremely bad. We expect him to become the centre of humour; we know that in the business of comedy, a very puritanical and rather joyless figure is likely to receive comedic humiliation; but in this case the humiliation that Malvolio gets, seems protracted and harsh....   [tags: Malvolio William Shakespeare Twelfth Night Essays]

Better Essays
576 words (1.6 pages)

The Use of Deception in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night Essay

- The Use of Deception in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night            Deception is a key theme in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night. The characters must use deception to obtain good things, escape bad situations, or to play cruel hilarious ticks on other people. One example of deception is when Viola clothes herself in men's clothing in order to obtain a job under the Duke of Illyria, Orsino. During another scene Sir Andrew, Fabian, Maria, and Sir Toby Belch trick Malvolio into making a fool of himself....   [tags: William Shakespeare Twelfth Night Essays]

Better Essays
697 words (2 pages)

Misperception and Deception in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night Essay

- Misperception and Deception in Twelfth Night                  Twelfth Night is likely one of Shakespeare’s most entertaining and complete comedy. This romance explores a generous wealth of themes and issues. The most recurrent theme is the relationship between misperception and deception. As a result of their environment and immediate circumstances, men are forced into misperceptions. Paradoxically, they are completely trapped by these illusions. Between the bad fortune they encounter and the bad fortune they themselves generate, they become caught between a rock and a hard place; they are victims of deceit as well as their own folly....   [tags: Twelfth Night William Shakespeare]

Better Essays
2156 words (6.2 pages)

Essay on Love Triangle in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night

- Love Triangle in William Shakespeare's Twelfth Night “O, what a deal of scorn looks beautiful in the contempt and anger of his lip. A murd’rous guilt shows not itself more soon than love that would seem hid: love’s night is noon. – Cesario, by the roses of the spring, by maidhood, honor, truth, and every thing, I love thee so, that maugre all thy pride, nor wit nor reason can my passion hide. Do not extort thy reasons from this clause, for that I woo, thou therefore hast no cause; but rather reason thus with reason fetter: love sought is good, but given unsought is better.” (Shakespeare....   [tags: William Shakespeare Twelfth Night Love Essays]

Better Essays
1041 words (3 pages)

Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare Essay

- There’s nothing better than a comedy to lift your spirits up with baskets full of laughter. I like the idea of comedies when there’s a complete misunderstanding, trickery or when things go wrong. For example in one of the episodes of My Wife and Kids when a girl called Claire tells her dad that there will be photograph day in school. So she asks her dad for a massive photograph of her to put on the wall. Her dad said no. On the day of the school photograph when she woke up, her right cheek was swollen-much bigger than the other....   [tags: Twelfth Night, Olivia, Cesario, comedy, The Elizab]

Better Essays
1025 words (2.9 pages)

Essay on Twelfth Night By William Shakespeare

- Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare was performed at the Whole Food’s rooftop on the night of September 30th by Present Company. Directed by Joseph Garlock, the play was well received by adults and children alike. The success of the play was achieved particularly through the play’s execution of stage techniques, community engagement methods, and unique character portrayals which increased the entertainment aspect of the play and facilitated understanding of the play’s plotline. Through stage set techniques, characters were able to manipulate space and make the play more engaging for spectators through establishing closer actor and audience interactions....   [tags: Theatre, Actor, Character, William Shakespeare]

Better Essays
787 words (2.2 pages)