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Power in "The Tempest"

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This 5 page paper examines the issue of power and control as seen in "The Tempest" and what it says about Shakespeare's society. Bibliography lists 2 sources.

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5 pages (~225 words per page)

File: D0_HVPwrTem.rtf

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depend for their effect on creating another world entirely separate from the "real" one (the wood outside Athens in A Midsummer Nights Dream; the imaginary country of Illyria in Twelfth Night) and that is certain the case here. Prosperos island is completely divorced from reality and as such, forms a backdrop for some of the playwrights most intriguing creations. However, the play is not all fluff, and this paper examines the issue of power and control and what it says about Shakespeares society. Discussion Three types of control spring to mind immediately, and they all involved Prosperos control of others: there is his control over his daughter Miranda by virtue of the fact that he is her father; there is his control of Caliban; and finally, his control of Ariel. Prospero is a loving father and his control over Miranda is based on his concern for her; his control of the other two is not so benign; in fact, he is somewhat dishonorable in his dealings with them, particularly Caliban. Prospero is a sorcerer and in the play his powers are quite real. "Since Prospero, by virtue of his art, his magic, is all-powerful on the island, since the other characters are subject to him, there arises inevitably the theme of servitude and freedom" (Smith 1608). We learn that Ariel was once the servant of the witch Sycorax, who was banished from Algiers and landed on the island when she was with child; when Ariel refused to obey her commands she trapped him in a pine tree, where he remained for twelve years: "... she did confine thee / By help of her more potent ministers, / And in her most unmitigable rage, / Into a cloven pine, within which rift / Imprisond, thou didst painfully remain / A ...

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