Throughout history many minority groups have been maltreated; African or Japanese Americans, the LGBT community, and even at one point Christians. Each group has been oppressed, but none have come anywhere near the level of torture Jews have endured. This torture is prevalent throughout Shakespeare’s comedic play The Merchant of Venice. In the play the Jewish moneylender Shylock is subject to much anti-Semitism. Shylock is indirectly characterized as a victim of past Anti-Semitism in his everyday life and present Anti-Semitism in court by diction and repetition.
Considering that thrive is the root of thrift, the two quoted phrases, looked upon in hindsight, reveal to the audience Shylock’s future curse. A shaded beginning to this could be when Antonio’s boats are lost and the interest is due. The inability of Shylock to collect that interest, thanks to the artful legal maneuvering of Portia, exposes him to an ultimate curse--the loss of reputation and wealth. However, the likely commencement of this prophecy is the loss of the blessing which Shylock is so proud of, he blames the Christians, since his converted daughter is the one who robs him. (Thrift is blessing, if daughters steal it not.)
Deception, defiance and double meanings are what make Shakespeare’s plays the great wonder that they are today. Shakespearian is known as the most poetic, romantic and comic form of play writing, however each play has strong morals and meanings in them. One of Shakespeare’s plays, the Merchant of Venice, focuses of the acts of deception. Some say that none of the characters in the play are seen as ‘kind’ by the end of it, stating that: “Grace, nobility and generosity of spirit are submerged by greed, distrust and ugly prejudice.” This play enlightens true meanings of deception on nearly every level; from Jessica deceiving her father, Shylock being deceived by the court and the deceitful tale of ‘the rings’, that is seen throughout the Merchant of Venice. Jessica is the beautiful daughter of Shylock the Jew, who she despises greatly.
“This predilection for minding other people’s business was time-honored among the people in Salem, and it undoubtedly created many of the suspicions which were to feed the upcoming madness.” (Miller, p. 1217), Miller describes the situation in Salem. Another literary device used in the play is imagery. Most of the settings are very dark to make the reader feel how unwelcoming and gloomy it was. Miller describes the courtroom like this: “The room is solemn, even forbidding” (Miller, p. 1249). Imagery is important because Arthur Miller wants the reader to feel the dark atmosphere in Salem at the
In addition to everything else in his life, the deaths of his other siblings make it hard for him. What makes Smith an unsympathetic character is that he has killed before the Clutter just for spite. Smith also can seem to think for himself, it seems as though Hickock has to do most of the thinking because he himself is
Although, many people that were condemned weren’t actually apart of the Communist Party, (under McCarthyism around 1950-1954) they got blacklisted or lost their jobs. This social injustice is also portrayed in The Crucible as its characters face the Salem Witch Trials. Arthur Miller wrote The Crucible as his own reaction to the injustice of McCarthyism. Miller’s purpose was to show how people accused each other with false denunciations because of their fear, jealousy and solely hatred of one another under McCarthyism. Miller illustrates the process of the false accusations based on fear through one of the protagonists Abigail.
Arthur Miller brings slavery and racism and in his play, “The Crucible” which are the very common themes in black literature. Tituba lives under the triple oppression of these two things. Under the slavery system, she has to work outside from her homeland Barbados, which makes it hardly possible for her to return. “Negro slave enters. Tituba is in her forties.
In one conversation with Jessica, he begins by stating that “the sins of the father are to be laid upon the children,” implying from the start that there is significance in that Jessica is Shylock’s child, whether he means “sin” to represent the passing down of the Jewish faith specifically or not (3.5.1-2). This important introductory line is a biblical reference to Deuteronomy 5.9, which instructs that the “iniquity of the fathers,” or what a Christian might equivocate to the Jewish faith, will continue “unto the third and fourth generation,” just as religion was thought to be passed down through generations and heavily interwoven with one’s ancestry (King James Version). Therefore, because of having been born to a Jew, the concept of faith denomination by blood again makes its presence for
ROLE OF WOMEN IN THE PAST AND THE PRESENT. “Frailty, the name is Women “– William Shakespeare Merchant of Venice written by William Shakespeare is a bitter comedy about a Jewish moneylender Shylock who seeks revenge from a wealthy merchant Antonio. The play highlights many important themes such as mercy, prejudice, the law, justice. The setting of the play is in Venice and in Belmont. While the Jews had been banned from England since 1290 , Venice had laws to protect non venetians traders who contributed in the economic welfare .Shakespeare’s setting is full of religious strife between the Christians and the Jews .Belmont is presented as a contrast to Venice .
I say this because there is a reason as to why Shylock is a villain in the first place; the treatment of Shylock by our good hearted Christian, Antonio. The Jews are an oppressed people, so why would Shylock, a targeted Jew, not become a villain under the circumstances of which his life revolves? There are many situations that shows Shylock as the victim of this story, but his reaction to his oppression, is what drives the audience and modern day readers, to ultimately agree that Shylock is a villain. The first offence is as a result of the time period. During this era in the city of Venice, it was mandatory for Jews to wear red, so that Christians can clearly distinguish between Jews and non-Jews.