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Mothers in william shakespeares the tempest essay

Justice Tempered With Compassion —and a Bit of Mischief Prospero's brother, Antonio, unjustly forced him out of his dukedom and ordered him and his daughter, Miranda, to be set adrift on the Mediterranean. Had it not been for Gonzalo, who provided Prospero with provisions, he and Miranda would have died at sea. Alonso, King of Naples, sanctioned Antonio's rulership.

Twelve years later, having mastered the art of sorcery, Prospero uses his wizardry to regain his dukedom while working a modicum of mischief on his wrongdoers by throwing a scare into them.

They suffer the terror of a raging storm and a shipwreck, then ride violent waves that spew them onto the shore of a strange and mysterious island. After Prospero plays more tricks on them, the mothers in william shakespeares the tempest essay repent and yield to him.

Prospero then renounces vengeance, at least the bloody and deathly kind. Prospero says, For you, most wicked sir, whom to call brother Would even infect my mouth, I do forgive Thy rankest fault; all of them; and require My dukedom of thee, which, perforce, I know, Thou must restore.

Loyalty and Disloyalty After Antonio began managing the affairs of state for his brother, he seized more and more power until he became the de facto ruler of Milan. His advance enabled him to step out of Prospero's shadow and do as he pleased.

Or so he thought. Instead, he had fallen under the shadow of another man, the more powerful Alonso, King of Naples, to whom he was to pay tribute money and homage. But the King of Naples, a longtime enemy of Prospero, told Antonio he would waive payment of the tribute if he forced Prospero out of his dukedom.

Enthralled with the idea of becoming the Duke of Milan with all the trappings of power, Prospero tells Miranda in recounting events of his overthrow that he ordered his henchmen, in midnight darkness, to arrest Prospero and his daughter and cast them adrift on the Mediterranean, knowing full well that they would probably be doomed to death at sea.

But they survived, thanks to Prospero's loyal counselor, old Gonzago. He had provided the two castaways food mothers in william shakespeares the tempest essay clothing, as well as Prospero's beloved books—including books on magic and sorcery.

Eventually, Prospero and his daughter found their way to an island. There they survived in isolation. As one of his first acts on the island, Prospero freed the spirit Ariel from twelve years of imprisonment in the hollow of a tree.

Grateful, Ariel pledged to be Prospero's loyal servant. After the apparent shipwreck, Antonio plots against Alonso—to whom he had also pledged loyalty—persuading the king's brother, Sebastian, to join him in murdering Alonso. Sebastian would accede to the throne of Naples. Antonio would be free of Alonso's overarching shadow.

  1. He conspires with Stephano and Trinculo to murder Prospero.
  2. Grateful, Ariel pledged to be Prospero's loyal servant. Even the lovers Ferdinand and Miranda have to undergo trials to prove that their love is genuine before they achieve the freedom to marry.
  3. As one of his first acts on the island, Prospero freed the spirit Ariel from twelve years of imprisonment in the hollow of a tree. Act 3, Scene 2 Caliban claims that everyone on the island hates Prospero and he has enslaved all of its magical creatures and inhabitants.
  4. Fortunately, however, Prospero's dedication to perfecting the art of sorcery on the island enabled him to expose the evildoing of his enemies and regain his dukedom. Let me not, Since I have my dukedom got And pardon'd the deceiver, dwell In this bare island by your spell; But release me from my bands With the help of your good hands.

Thus, history is about to repeat itself, with Sebastian's disloyalty to Alonso imitating Antonio's disloyalty to Prospero. Sebastian tells Antonio, Thy case, dear friend, Shall be my precedent: Unfortunately, conflicts involving these themes don't always end happily, as in The Tempest.

Humanism During the European Renaissance between 1400 and 1600, great thinkers began advocating the betterment of civilization by emphasizing the study of classical culture and literature and by promoting the cultivation of such ennobling qualities as compassion, generosity, friendship, wise judgment, and prudence. In The Tempest, Prospero exhibits those qualities. He does not seek to retaliate against those who wronged him; he seeks only to bring them out of the darkness of hatred and revenge.

Why does Caliban hate Prospero so much in The Tempest? In his view, what has Prospero done wrong?

In this respect, he is like the Renaissance humanist who builds a bridge for the Dark Ages to cross into the enlightenment of a new age in which humankind renounces its old barbarity and savagery. In discussing this idea, Shakespeare scholar Bernard D. Shakespeare is perhaps the perfect expression of Renaissance humanism.

Where Are the Mothers in Shakespeare?

His profound sympathy for humanity enabled him to pierce to the very core of his characters; his unexcelled gifts as a poet made his men and women unforgettable creatures of flesh and blood. This may be said as much of the best of his earliest plays as of The Tempest, where Prospero is himself a kind of incarnation of the best of what the Renaissance had extended to mankind.

English Literature and Its Backgrounds. Whether he intended the setting to symbolize the New World is arguable, but it certainly resembles it. Like America, it is wild and undeveloped, with strange sights, sounds, and creatures. In this respect, she is like the real-life Virginia Dare, the first English child born in the Americas on Roanoke Island, off the coast of present-day North Carolina.

Dedication vs Neglect As retold in a flashback, Prospero so loved books and learning that he turned over his duties as duke to Antonio to devote his full attention to increasing his knowledge, isolating himself in his study. He neglected to perform any of his offices.

The Tempest Essay

Meanwhile, in his new position as manager of the affairs of state, Antonio took advantage of Prospero's neglect to gain more and more control over the dukedom. This experience awakened in him, as Prospero says, "an evil nature" 2.

  • He has the power to change his appearance at will—and even to become fire or to fly to the ends of the earth in a split-second;
  • Whether those who rise to power can handle it without becoming corrupt is another question;
  • This lack is partly explained by the fact that women were not allowed to perform on the English stage;
  • For this reason, the play appeals to the child in all of us—and to children themselves;
  • Yet she appears to see beyond his physical presence into his soul;
  • Flashbacks Shakespeare uses flashbacks to recount events that occurred before and just after his arrival on the island.

Eventually, with the backing of the King of Naples—long an enemy of Prospero—Antonio overthrew Prospero, kicked him out of Milan, and ordered him to be set adrift at sea with his daughter. Fortunately, however, Prospero's dedication to perfecting the art of sorcery on the island enabled him to expose the evildoing of his enemies and regain his dukedom.

Miranda's enthrallment with Ferdinand is understandable. He is, after all, the first young man she has ever met. Yet she appears to see beyond his physical presence into his soul.

Ferdinand likewise seems to prize Miranda body and soul. Their instant love for each other suggests that at least some people have an instinctual ability to evaluate the overall worthiness and desirability of a potential mate without consulting elders or experts in human relationships.

Lovestruck men and women may not be able to explain why they have fallen in love at first sight. But their joy at having done so—along with their queasy stomachs—tells them that they have done the right thing.

Friends in Need In The Tempest, friends in need are friends indeed, as the old saying says. Thanks to his friend Gonzalo, Mothers in william shakespeares the tempest essay and his daughter survive their ordeal at sea. The Great Prize of Freedom Everyone in The Tempest is a slave or a captive—socially, emotionally, geographically, or otherwise. For example, Prospero and Miranda, victims of treachery, are captives of their environment. The shipwrecked Italians are captives of Prospero and his sorcery; some of them are also captives of their own faults and weaknesses.

Ariel, a spirit of the air, is Prospero's servant.

  1. This experience awakened in him, as Prospero says, "an evil nature" 2. The climax of a play or another literary work, such as a short story or a novel, can be defined as 1 the turning point at which the conflict begins to resolve itself for better or worse, or as 2 the final and most exciting event in a series of events.
  2. Here is everything advantageous to life. All of the female roles were played by young boys before their voices broke, so that a younger character part was obviously a better physical and vocal match.
  3. Whether those who rise to power can handle it without becoming corrupt is another question.
  4. Caliban believes he is the rightful ruler of the island.

Caliban, a misshapen half-human, is a prisoner of unruly instincts and of his overlord Prospero. Throughout the play, these characters work to attain their freedom and—through ordeal, tribulation, demonstrations of humanity, reformative behavior—get it.

Even the lovers Ferdinand and Miranda have to undergo trials to prove that their love is genuine before they achieve the freedom mothers in william shakespeares the tempest essay marry. Importance of Education Prospero believes that a good education is extremely important. He values education so highly that he turns the day-to-day operation of his dukedom over to his brother, Antonio, so that he can master the content of his books.

Unfortunately, his brother becomes drunk with power and overthrows Prospero. After arriving on the island, Prospero continues his education with the books old Gonzalo provided him before he and his daughter were set adrift. Moreover, he devotes a great deal of attention to the education of his daughter and even teaches his language to the half-human Caliban.

Although it was his total dedication to education that caused Prospero to lose his dukedom, it was also education that regained it for him; for he had mastered magic and sorcery as presented in his books, then used this knowledge to cause the shipwreck and carry out a plan that resulted in the restoration of him as the rightful Duke of Milan.

Power Twelve-year flashbacks reveal that thirst for power motivated Antonio to betray and exile Prospero and his daughter and that Prospero mastered the power of sorcery, enabling him to rule his new island home and its inhabitants—Caliban and the supernatural entities—and even to control the elements.

After the play returns to the present time, Caliban complains that he should rule the island, as did his mother, the witch Sycorax, before she died.

Related Questions

In other words, he wants power. Then there is the case of Ariel, Prospero's spirit servant. He has the power to change his appearance at will—and even to become fire or to fly to the ends of the earth in a split-second.

Alas, though, he lacks the power to free himself from servitude to Prospero. After the Italians are on the island, power struggles occupy all of the principal characters. On the one hand, Prospero executes a plan to win back the power to rule Milan as its duke. On the other, Antonio and Sebastian conspire to kill King Alonso so that Sebastian can accede to the throne of Naples; Caliban, Stephano, and Trinculo plot to kill Prospero and seize his power.

In the real world, the desire for power is a major force in determining the course of world history, for better or worse. This force motivates the ambitious in politics, business, religion, journalism, medicine, and just about every other field of human endeavor. Whether those mothers in william shakespeares the tempest essay rise to power can handle it without becoming corrupt is another question.

In The Tempest, Prospero is up to the task. Magic and the Supernatural Magic and otherworldly forces drive the plot of The Tempest and enable the actors to execute theatrics that cloak the play with a fairytale atmosphere.

For this reason, the play appeals to the child in all of us—and to children themselves. In fact, The Tempest—along with A Midsummer Night's Dream—are among the most frequently performed plays in elementary and secondary schools.

The play has an evil witch, Sycorax—whom we learn about in flashbacks—and a good "witch," Prospero, who works powerful but harmless magic throughout the play. The supranormal elements in the play reflect the seemingly supranormal elements we confront in the real world, such as coincidence, serendipity, bad luck, ball lightning, UFO sightings, voodoo, the predictions of Nostradamus, and so on. Other conflicts include the following: Alonso, mothers in william shakespeares the tempest essay longtime enemy of Prospero, supported Antonio's overthrow of Prospero.

Caliban believes he is the rightful ruler of the island. He conspires with Stephano and Trinculo to murder Prospero. Sebastian and Antonio vs Alonso: Sebastian and Antonio plot to murder Alonso so that Sebastian, Alonso's brother, can become the king of Naples.

Flashbacks Shakespeare uses flashbacks to recount events that occurred before and just after his arrival on the island. The main flashback begins at line 65 of the second scene of Act 1 and ends at line 205. During this flashback, Prospero tells his daughter, Miranda, the story of his ouster as Duke of Milan and his arrival on the island with her when she was three years old.

Other flashbacks occur from time to time to reveal information about Sycorax, Caliban's mother, and her imprisonment of Ariel and other sprites. The climax of a play or another literary work, such as a short story or a novel, can be defined as 1 the turning point at which the conflict begins to resolve itself for better or worse, or as 2 the final and most exciting event in a series of events.

The climax in The Tempest occurs, according to the first definition, in Act III, Scene III, when Ariel appearing as a Harpy, a mythological monster with the head of a woman and the body of a bird reveals Antonio, Alonso, and Sebastian as sinners who conspired to remove Prospero from his dukedom.

According to the second definition, the climax occurs at the end of Act V, when Ferdinand and his father are reunited, and all the enemies in the play become friends.

Harrison has written the following appraisal of the language of the play: Shakespeare, like all Elizabethan dramatists, used four kinds of speech in his plays: