• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

Explore how Much Ado About Nothing uses the comic genre to allow Shakespeare to expose and criticise Human Flaws.

Extracts from this document...


Benedict states that ?happy are they that hear their distractions and can put them to mending.? Explore how ?Much Ado? About Nothing? uses the comic genre to allow Shakespeare to expose and criticise Human Flaws. When Benedict states that ?happy are they that hear their distractions and can put them to mending?, he is stating that characters are able to recognise flaws within their own character and, more importantly, are able to fix them. One conventional aspect of Elizabethan society, that is very much evident within ?Much Ado? About Nothing?, is social inequality. ?In Shakespeare?s play, women are portrayed as being powerless in their own lives and in everything around them.? In Elizabethan society, men were dominant over women and made all the important decisions. In ?Much Ado? About Nothing?, the men frequently make bad decisions, and is a recurring theme throughout the play. Although Shakespeare was a product of his time, and accepted social norms and values, he demonstrated an understanding of women?s subjection by men in his work. The comic genre allows Shakespeare to push the boundaries when challenging social conventions. For example, Shakespeare is able to portray Beatrice as a feisty, sharp, intelligent woman. ...read more.


The night before the wedding, Don John deceives both Don Pedro and Claudio into believing that Hero ?is disloyal? and has slept with another man. Don Pedro questions the allegation at first ?I will not think it? whereas Claudio is quick to believe it to an extent ?May this be so?? The fact Don Pedro is able to question the allegation shines a negative light upon Claudio who should not question Hero?s dishonesty. The audience feel frustrated with Claudio through Shakespeare?s use of dramatic irony, allowing the audience to know the truth that Hero is innocent, especially when Claudio rushes to plan his revenge, whereby he will ?wed, there will I shame her.? Women in Elizabethan times were objectified and became possessions of their husbands. They would not have attended school and their ?education would have been purely of domestic nature? in preparation for marriage. As men were seen as the superior figure that provided for him and his family, their pride and dignity meant the world to them. Therefore, to be a cuckold (a man married to an unfaithful wife) associated much shame and brought down the male?s social standing. ...read more.


For example, an Elizabethan man?s good name was of considerable worth to him and any action that tarnished it, would affect his social standing. However, Shakespeare highlights that ?susceptibility to pride and deception? and ?the inability to think before drawing conclusions? are major flaws found within the play and within Shakespearean society. It is through the comic genre that Shakespeare is able to portray his message that all of us, to some extent, have our own character-flaw(s) and it?s those who can fix them that benefit - like Leonato. Furthermore, as the audience watch ?Much Ado? About Nothing? and laugh at the character-flaws found within it, it makes them realise that their own character flaws can just as easily, be made fun of, as ?Comedy is intimidating and encourages complacency in those who laugh?. Many people have a fear of being laughed at because it makes them feel inferior. This is known as superiority theory, whereby people laugh at something or someone to make themselves seem superior. Due to this fear of being laughed at, people are more encouraged to fix the things that are comical, such as their human flaws. 1) Essay on The Accepted social more of Elizabethan times, 2) http://www.directessays.com/viewpaper/102401.html?utm_expid=174881- 1&utm_referrer=https 3) http://www.elizabethan-era.org.uk/elizabethan-women.htm 4) http://www.shmoop.com/much-ado-about-nothing/maturity-theme. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Much Ado About Nothing section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Much Ado About Nothing essays

  1. Marked by a teacher

    In "Much Ado about Nothing", Shakespeare presents us with a conventional and unconventional heroine ...

    5 star(s)

    the demand of Benedick that could be seen as very unfeminine: "Kill Claudio". She bemoans the fact that, as a woman, she cannot use force to avenge the wrong done to her cousin, and has no hesitation in using Benedick's avowals of love as a tool in her own desire for revenge: scarcely the archetypal submissive and dependent woman.

  2. Marked by a teacher

    Claudio-'a man of honour betrayed'?

    3 star(s)

    In the renaissance period people used to live by the bible, this is where the idea of male superiority came from. The story of Adam and Eve blames Eve for tempting Adam to eat the fruit. Thus, it was the woman who was morally weak.

  1. A Marxist Study of Much Ado About Nothing. The ideology perpetuated in Much ...

    These two instances of gulling, which bolster the authenticity of the second world of Don Pedro, manage also to exorcise and suppress the power of women in deflating Beatrice. The second world led by Don Pedro must succeed in replacing the primary world (where Benedick is verbally attacked by Beatrice)

  2. Much ado about nothing exploring the relationships between Claudio and Hero & Benedick & ...

    'farewell, therefore, Hero' Claudio's placement of trust in one who cannot be trusted, and his sudden change of heart regarding Hero illustrates to the audience that Claudio is a flawed character with a hasty temperament. Claudio's character is further developed by Shakespeare as one who acts on impulse; this is most obvious when Claudio supposedly witnesses Hero's infidelity.

  1. Note Notes, Forsooth, And Nothing: Themes in Much Ado About Nothing

    One aspect of this theme involves the idea that objects or affairs, when noted, are not always what they seem to be. The frequent use of masks throughout the story supports this idea. Masks create a distorted version of reality by giving a person a false appearance.

  2. To what extent does the portrayal of women in Much Ado About Nothing subvert ...

    Although, staying true to her word, Beatrice turns down the offer, on the basis that his ?Grace is too costly to wear every day.? But there is dramatic irony in this; it is evident that she does not want a husband, so the audience is fully aware that the plot will alter in due time, ending in a married Beatrice.

  1. Through comparing the relationship of Claudio and Hero with that of Beatrice and Benedick ...

    celebrities today who profit economically from advantageous marriages are proof that money based relationships still very much drive notions of love. Claudio is the typical Elizabethan romantic, beguiled into notions of chivalry by society?s stereotypical view of males as creatures honourable and confident and easily enticed into romantic love through

  2. What comic devices does Shakespeare use in the opening scene of Much Ado About ...

    He mocks her further in the same line by exclaiming, ??are you yet living?? This mocking battle continues for several lines but in the end Benedick ends with a ?Jade?s trick? and slyly excuses himself from the engagement. The audience finds the use of names funny because it makes the

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work