The Tempest Essay

1610 Words 7 Pages
Everyone has lost something. One of my earliest memories is a car ride through the desert of Arizona. We had just stopped at a gas station, and after we had gotten back on the road I realized that I had left behind a small toy I had gotten at McDonald's earlier that day. Even at seven years old I knew that I would forget about the toy in a day or two, but for some reason I could not help but ardently entreat my parents to return for it. It was only after I had lost the toy that I realized how much I wanted it. Shakespeare’s characters have lost something as well: their freedom. The idea of a “puppet master” is not an uncommon one in classic literature. In Shakespeare’s Macbeth we sense the subtle manipulations of the three witches in …show more content…
Other times attempts at independence are thwarted by Ariel's intervention: he causes Alonso and Gonzolo to fall asleep before they can continue to search for Alonso's son (2.1.204-205), he wakes them up before Antonio and Sebastian can murder them (2.1.330-334), and he even imprisons the entire party for a time in a small grove so they cannot continue to wander around the island (5.1.10-13). Aside from this, Alonso is also trapped by his grief in his son’s death. For most of the play he is simply a silent observer content to watch the world around him without interest. Most of the attempt by other characters to interact with him are answered with a simple “Prithee, peace” or some variation of that phrase (2.1.10, 25, 127,178). His longest speech until the last act documents his struggle against a fate that has cursed him with a dead son and a distant daughter. “Would I had never / Married my daughter there! for, coming thence, / My son is lost and, in my rate, she too, / Who is so far from Italy removed / I ne'er again shall see her” (2.1.104-106). We also see Gonzalo’s ignorance. Gonzalo fails to see that he is being ridiculed by Sebastian and Antonio (2.1.11-16, 22-34, 148-151, 171-176) even as he discusses profound ideas building the perfect society. (2.1.147-177) Whatever the wisdom and purity of his thoughts, you cannot help but feel that any attempt at perfection would be doomed to failure simply because he is unaware

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