Suffering

HideShow resource information
View mindmap
  • Suffering
    • Introduction
      • Suffering in King Lear is intense and relentless, characters are driven beyond the limits of endurance
      • Gloucester and Lear especially are overwhelmed by their suffering: G dies of a broken heart and L's greatest agony is when C dies
      • Reflected in imagery of the play: L speaks of G&R physically attacking him: G "struck" him with her tongue and her "sharp-tooth'd unkindness"
      • According to aristotle, the two emotions an audience should feel are horror and pity: suffering in KL evokes both emotions in the audience.. Inc tragic hero
    • Suffering necessary anagnorisis/ redemption
      • LEAR: storm scene "Take physic, Pomp; expose thyself to feel what wretches feel" storm is a metaphore for england's suffering as well as Lears
      • GLOUC:      "I have no way, and therefore want no eyes; I stumbled when i saw" Metaphorical blindness to sychophance has led him to be physically blind
        • "As flies to wanton boys,are we to th'Gods; they kill us for their sport" Much like Lear Glouc realises the insignificance of man through his suffering
    • Shakespear presents guilt at the heart of all suffering
      • Religeous imagery
        • "thou art a soul in bliss, upon a wheel of fire"
        • Christian ethos underpins the play of forgiveness and redemption
          • CONTEXT: reminder to James who made strong convictions about the DROK eg in 1610: "kings are not only God's lietenants upon earth and sit upon God's throne, but even by God himself they are called Gods"
    • Evil or bad characters are mostly defined by their ability to pre-mediate and relish suffering
      • Let us "hit" together. Connotations of physical violence
      • "one side will mock another; th'other too// let him smell his way to Dover" sadistic pleasure
    • Good characters are able to empathise with the suffering of others... evoking pathos and cartharsis
      • GLOUC "I would not see thy cruel nails pluck out his poor old eyes" to regan about lear. Poor = pun evokes pathos in audience (foreshadow)
    • Conclusion
      • Through suffering, L and G become compassionat, and Edgar becomes strong and fit to rule. Through suffering they achieve heroism.
        • The best natures can absorb pain and learn from it, shakespear appears to suggest it is simply man's fate to suffer

Comments

No comments have yet been made

Similar English Literature resources:

See all English Literature resources »See all King Lear resources »