Scientia Potentia Est Analysis

964 Words4 Pages
The division between the mind and the body is all over “Scientia Potentia Est,” one of the strongest episodes of The Crown yet. Elizabeth may lead a life of physical luxury, but it’s becoming more and more apparent to her just how much her limited education is holding her back. She’s keenly aware that while the great men around her earned their positions with their intelligence, she earned hers solely through virtue of her birth. But those great men have their own problems too. For all their education and experience, Winston Churchill and Foreign Secretary Anthony Eden are being betrayed by their bodies. Churchill suffers not one but two strokes while Eden is left nearly equally incapacitated by gallbladder issues. As Elizabeth strives to improve…show more content…
As young Elizabeth learns from her tutor at Eton, there must be harmony and trust between the cabinet government or “efficient,” which makes and executes policy, and the monarch or “dignified,” which gives symbolic legitimacy to those laws. But that relationship is thrown into disarray as the cabinet government manufactures increasingly complicated lies to hide the extent of Churchill and Eden’s illnesses from the queen. It’s a continuation of the old vs. new, man vs. woman undercurrents the show has been exploring since the beginning. But the mind vs. body dynamic gives “Scientia Potentia Est” a more specific focus and drive. It’s another episode that puts Elizabeth front and center. And it gives us our strongest understanding yet of our central monarch. There’s a real sadness in Elizabeth’s awareness of her own limitations. She isn’t stupid—in fact she’s remarkably intuitive in her political dealings—but she lacks the tools to fully put her mind to work. Her parents raised her to be a polite princess with an encyclopedic knowledge of constitutional law, but it never occurred to them that she might also need to know the basics about science, math, literature, and history. She turns conversations to dogs and horses not because those are the topics she particularly wants to discuss, but because they’re the only subjects she feels comfortable with. But after months of feeling inadequate, she decides to enlist the help of a tutor named Professor Hogg (Alan Williams) to “fill in the
Open Document