The Tempest Essay

‘Obey, and be attentive’ quote
‘Caliban, my slave’ quote
‘This island’s mine by Sycorax my mother,/Which thou tak’st from me.’ quote
‘For I am all the subjects that you have,/Which first was mine own king;’ quote
‘You taught me language, and my profit on’t/Is I know how to curse.’ quote
‘I might call him/A thing divine, for nothing natural/I ever saw so noble.’ [Ferdinand] quote
Usurpation – Theme the overthrow of a rightful leader or rules
Nature vs. Nurture – Theme civilisation corrupts, can be seen through Prospero’s usurpation – this event only happens because Antonio is too concerned with materialism and power; which can be viewed as traits of civilisation – though Sebastian and Antonio’s plot to kill the king, and through Caliban, Stephano and Trinculo’s attempt to murder Prospero. These plots and mutinies suggest that civilisation changes humans by encouraging them to be greedy for material wealth and power. In a complete contrast of civilisation, Miranda’s character functions to show the audience what society could be like if left untainted by the control of civilisation. For example, Miranda is a character full of innocence and concern for others, which she has not learnt but has simply always known – the most obvious example of this being when she tries to stop Prospero from hurting the men on the ship because she does not want them to suffer, and that she ‘has suffered with those I saw suffer’. (Act 1, Scene 2)
Colonialism exploitation which Western society uses to control ‘inferior’ beings
Attitudes and Values of the Time romance, peace and colonisation
Shakespeare’s Theatre farewell from Shakespeare to theatre. This is primarily due to the fact that this was Shakespeare’s last play and this goodbye to theatre is paralleled by the character of Prospero who gives up his magic and art at the end of the play.
colonisation western colonisation is foolish and irrational. For example, Prospero as the leader of the island takes control of the natives for his own purposes, such as Caliban and Ariel, but this is presented negatively through Shakespeare’s negative portrayal of Prospero as arrogant and manipulative.
the game of chess The game of chess which interrupts Act 5, Scene 1, between Miranda and Ferdinand is used by Shakespeare to show how Prospero has successful completed his aims
prospero’s books Prospero’s books also show his isolation from civilisation as magic is what causes him to forget his duties as Duke of Milan and cause Antonio to usurp him. We can see, from the ending of the play, that the only way Prospero can return to civilisation is by ridding himself of his magic by destroying his books. This suggests that magic or the supernatural does not function in society.
colonisation and freedom Language is depicted paradoxically as a curse and a gift which he uses to spurn Prospero who acts as his oppressor and jailer.
colonisation “You taught me language, and my profit on ‘tIs I know how to curse. The red plague rid youFor learning me your language!”
whilst self-discovery can be influenced significantly by others, ultimately the discoveries made are contingent upon the mindset of the individual. self discovery

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