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Is Prospero good or evil?

Paper type: Essay
Pages: 3 (606 words)
Categories: Book Review, Books And Reading, Literature
Downloads: 10
Views: 6
 “This shows the disgust the Caliban feels at being kept as a slave by Prospero are he helped Prospero survive on the island. Prospero has in affect taken the island from Caliban yet Prospero keeps reminding Caliban how much he has done for him. “I pitied thee, took pains to make thee speak… ” Prospero does this to keep Caliban mentally in debt to him. This is again for Prospero’s own gain; if Caliban couldn’t communicate then it would make it hard for Prospero to mentally control Caliban but it would also be hard for Prospero to instruct Caliban to do all of the manual labor.

The way Prospero treats Caliban could be justified as punishment for Caliban trying to have sex with Miranda. “… In mine own cell till thou didst seek to violate the honor of my child. ” Prospero could say that he has enslaved Caliban as a way of showing him he cant have what he wants all of the time.

This could be seen as human nature because after all Caliban is still a man Miranda is an attractive young girl so he can’t really be blamed. Prospero’s over reaction could be a sign of how much he has sheltered Miranda and is unable to accept she is a woman not a girl.

Even so the torment he puts Caliban through appears to be a bit excessive. When Prospero lands on the island he helps Ariel. He frees the tormented spirit for the clutches of Calibans, mother, Sycorax. Ariel has to pay the same price for Prospero’s help that Caliban has to pay – surrendering your freedom to Prospero. When Ariel was captured by Sycorax he was physically restrained but he was mentally free. When Prospero freed Ariel he became physically free but mentally he belongs to Prospero. Whenever Prospero calls Ariel he appears. “Approach my Ariel, come.

” This shows the tremendous hold Prospero has over Ariel; Ariel is a spirit but can be controlled by a mortal. Prospero doesn’t let Ariel forget that he saved him. He keeps reminding Ariel to keep him mentally trapped as he did with Caliban. “Dost thou forget from what a torment I did free thee? ” He keeps reminding Ariel what his life would have been like if Prospero hadn’t intervened. Again Prospero has helped someone on the island for his own selfish gain. This shows Prospero’s more two faced, self-involved side. Through out the play Prospero is seeking revenge for what injustices have been done to him in the past.

To achieve this he manipulates everyone around him. Prospero considers himself as a combination judge and jury. He has decided who was to blame for his exile and then carries out their punishment. Alonso corrupted Prospero’s brother Antonio and convinced him to over throw Prospero. In his mind this is the worse crime that could be committed. Not only was Alonso Prospero’s enemy he turned a member of his only family against him. This is where Prospero’s evil side shines through. Instead of just killing Alonso in the shipwreck he keeps him alive so that he can suffer physically and mentally just as Prospero would have done.

Alonso has to search for food and shelter but he also has to live with the assumption that his son, Ferdinand, is dead. “My son is lost”. Alonso is obviously wracked by grief at losing his son. To make it worse Ferdinand isn’t dead he is just being used by Prospero in a game on the other side of the island. This shows how Prospero likes to torment people just for the fun of it.

Cite this essay

Is Prospero good or evil?. (2020, Jun 02). Retrieved from https://studymoose.com/prospero-good-evil-9068-new-essay

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