Shakespeare Test 3

Shakespeare Test 3 - 1 Shakespeare Test #3 Question #1...

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Shakespeare Test #3 Question #1 Throughout the development of his works, it is clear that Shakespeare utilized similar themes and elements that are to this day still well-known and cherished as truly “Shakespearean”. Among these established elements is the theme of Appearance and Reality; or rather, the confusion of the two for one another. The principle of such confusion usually pertains to the identities of given characters, and not only plays a major role in the development of the play, but also proves to be a crucial element in developing the ideas underlying the theme of Appearance and Reality. As seen in Shakespeare’s Twelfth Night , the cross-dressing action of the elusive Viola serves as the successor to the identity confusion ideals first expressed in earlier comedies, such as The Comedy of Errors . In a sense, the confusion of identity and the failure to distinguish truth from trickery act as imperative points in highlighting Shakespeare’s beliefs on various elements of life, such as politics, power and namely, love. In his earlier work, The Comedy of Errors , Shakespeare swapped the places of the two twin brothers and their twin servants; this proved successful in providing an entertaining farce on identity and highlighting the oddities of “love”; Adriana cannot tell her husband apart from his twin brother, regardless of his clear objections and obvious obliviousness to her wishes. “Plead you to me, fair dame? I know you not:/ In Ephesus I am but two hours old,/ As strange unto your town as to your talk;/ Who, every word by all my wit being scann'd,/ Want wit in all one word to understand” (II:II:150-154). In Twelfth Night , Shakespeare takes such confusion to another level, cutting short the hair of a girl and replacing her gowns with stiff collared suiting and military style uniforms. The confusion that ensues is that of an even greater intensity than Errors , as Viola suddenly falls in love with her master, Duke Orsino, who believes her to be a man, his faithful friend Cesario. To make the 1
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situation even more laughable, Orsino’s object of love, Olivia, falls in love with Viola, whom she believes to be the dashing and charming Cesario. The situation is satirical in regards to love, as Olivia, in her blind passion, is unable to see that Cesario is actually a girl in disguise. Likewise, although Orsino spends much of his time in the company of his friend, he fails to see
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Shakespeare Test 3 - 1 Shakespeare Test #3 Question #1...

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