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King Lear Final Paper Essay

1. The theme of this play is the relationship between parents and children. Show how Shakespeare handled this. As how Shakespeare portrayed the parent-child relationship, he diverted it in aspects of how their ruler, King Lear, was mistreated by his own children after his authority had been stripped from him. King Lear, as what took place in the play, divided his land among his three children depending on how they would be able to please him. As was not predicted by the king himself, his most beloved daughter wanted to answer him fairly for the reason that she did not want to inherit a part of his kingdom unjustly. On the other hand, the two remaining daughters of his only wanted his land, and therefore flooded the king’s ears with lies. The two villainous daughters of the king represent the children who mistreat their parents when they are not of any use to them anymore. So the ungrateful children banish their father to fend for his own while they yearn for more power. Furthermore, the youngest daughter of the king said the truth to her father, although it would hurt him, for the reasons that she respected her father enough to tell him the painful truth. In modern times, people call it “tough love”. Her honesty did get her banished from the land, but it is evident in the play that the daughter did not love him less for his foolishness and bitter actions afterwards.

2. Discuss the importance of the storm scenes. The storm in the play represented the lowest points of King Lear’s life. When the king was mistreated by his two daughters, Goneril and Reagan, and shun by them, he was left out in the storm without shelter along with his fool. This scene in the play also represented his vulnerability because he had no one to run to. Luckily, Kent found him and took him in. He was willing to be taken in and cared for by his servant, since he had no power to say that he still had authority over Kent. Furthermore, the storm also represented his current state of mind and his emotions. Since he had lost all of what was his before, his mind was starting to become cloudy and his feelings were out of control.

3. Do you agree that Lear was “more sinned against than sinning”? Yes I agree that King Lear had paid more than enough for the sin he had committed against his daughter. The king only banished his most loving daughter, while he, himself, was banished by his two other ungrateful daughters. I had once stumbled across a quote that said, “Karma hits twice as hard as the initial blow.” This is exactly what happened to the king. For the price of banishing his youngest daughter, the deed was returned twice the initial blow because it was done to him by his two elder daughters, Goneril and Reagan.

4. “This is not altogether fool, my lord.” Discuss the function of the fool in the light of the remark. This statement was released by Kent in Act 1, Scene 4, as to support what the fool was pointing out during his conversation with the king. The fool was the only one who’s criticism the king would listen to. In this conversation, the fool is trying to put some sense into the king’s head that he had turned away from everything that should have mattered to him the most, which was his beloved daughter, Cordelia, and the land he once ruled. Those decisions led him to lose the title of being a father and a ruler, which left him with a single title of which is only owned by a fool. As a result, this only made the king a bigger fool than the fool himself because at least the fool knew better than the king.

5. The language of poetry is a metaphor. Do you agree? Cite examples from King Lear. Yes, I agree that poetry is made up of metaphors as a form of expression. The use of exaggeration in a text gives emphasis, entertainment, and imagination, to the readers. Shakespeare used the metaphoric figure of speech throughout this particular work of his. One instance would be when the king described his two daughters as pelicans in the line, “’Twas this flesh begot. Those pelican daughters.”(Shakespeare, 141). This line signifies that the king described his daughters as animals, which is vile and cruel. Another example in the play was when the king compared himself as to how a dragon would rage seen in the line, “Come not between the dragon and his wrath.” (Shakespeare, 15). This sends the message to Kent that he should not enrage the monster that he already was any further.

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