King Lear Reveals the Tragic Pattern of Shakespeare

Salim Eflih Al-Ibia

Abstract


Rather than focusing on the obvious traditions of evaluating Shakespearean tragic heroes, this paper presents a groundbreaking approach to unfold the pattern William Shakespeare follows as he designed his unique characters. This pattern applies to most, if not all, Shakespearean tragic heroes. I argue that Shakespeare himself reveals a great portion of this pattern on the tongue of Lear as the latter disowns Goneril and Regan promising to have “such revenges on [them] both” in King Lear. Lear’s threats bestow four unique aspects that apply not only to his character but they also apply to Shakespearean tragic heroes. Lear’s speech tells us that he is determined to have an awful type of revenge on his daughters. However, the very same speech tells us that he seems uncertain about the method through which he should carry out this revenge. Lear does not express any type of remorse as he pursues his vengeful plans nor should he aim at amnesty. He also admits his own madness as he closes his revealing speech. This research develops these facts about Lear to unfold the unique pattern Shakespeare follows as he portrayed his major tragic figures. This pattern is examined, described and analyzed in King Lear, Othello, and Hamlet. We will find out that the pattern suggested in this study helps us better understand Shakespeare’s tragedies and enables us to provide better explanations for some controversial scenes in the tragedies discussed.  


Keywords


Dual realization of crimes, Revenge, Tragic pattern of Shakespeare.

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References


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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.18533/journal.v6i4.1142

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