‘’A Born Devil Whose Nature-Nurture can never stick’’ – ‘The Tempest’.
Between the three texts it could be said that there are clear links closely related to Gender role, Emotion and Modernity which are fully exposed to the core through the intricate manipulation of Structure, Form, Lexis and Representation. Throughout ‘The Tempest’ Shakespeare outlines the line of thought that human actions are never fully influenced by a single factor, and so, evolves into a culmination of ‘’nature-nurture’’. From this, critics must evaluate the intricate detail of texts before assigning them to a predetermined cause of ‘’nature’’ or ‘’nurture’’.
Particularly through the manipulation of structure and form in both ‘The Winter’s Tale’ and ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ we are increasingly aware of the inherent nature of a ‘Tale’, that is historically known as a story told by women and yet, can be comfortably dated back to Geoffrey Chaucer and his interpretation of a ‘Tale’ throughout ‘The Canterbury Tales’. More notably, throughout ‘The Winter’s Tale’ the audience is guided by Time and Leontes’ Jealousy, which are so intrinsically linked, that the audience may find some difficulties from differentiating between the two themes. Here, Shakespeare almost confines the 17th century audience to a heightened sense of confusion amidst the dark, violent court of Sicilia. The Polarisation of setting savours strongly of bitterness, whereupon the introduction of Time in Act IV metaphorically acts as a barrier to Leontes’ jealousy and his ‘’diseased opinion’’ and ultimately prevents the ‘disease’ from seeping into Bohemia. The ‘’great difference’’ between the Courts of Bohemia and Sicilia almost evolve into the epicentre of destruction whereupon we almost adopt a somnambulatory approach to defining the characteristics of an individual once we are aware of what court they derive from. The Stigma attached to Bohemia savours of Frivolity and Freedom which irrecoverably lingers in the darkness of Sicilia. From this, the audience, particularly a 19th century Victoria audience would perhaps understand Leontes’ jealousy and violence in the light of presumed infidelity of his wife, and so, may be more empathic towards Leontes through their own dark sentiments which are suppressed by their Prudish Façade.
Similarly, throughout ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ it can also be said that the novel adopts a hysterical attitude to the manipulation of Time and the Polarisation of setting. However, despite the common ground between the texts, ‘The Handmaid’s Tale’ is essentially deficient in a structural sanctuary such as Bohemia for the reader to escape to. Although Jezebels appears to be a place for frivolity and a sanctuary for the ‘’old days’’, at a closer look the element of a sanctuary is merely confined to Offred’s stream of consciousness. Critics such as Charlotte Newman comment closely on the intertwining of ‘’reality and history’’. Here, there is a clear counteraction to ‘The Winter’s Tale’ where Time is not seen as a mere linear continuum, but rather, for Offred it is a thought that can be manipulated…