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Explore the ways Shakespeare presents the Duke in Act one of measure for measure. What possibilities and restraints does this role offer for the contemporary director?

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Introduction

Explore the ways Shakespeare presents the Duke in Act one of measure for measure. What possibilities and restraints does this role offer for the contemporary director? In a play we get to know about a character by what he says what he does and what other people think about him. When the duke abandons the city it cause society to collapse and the whole city to fall into chaos. Any eratical behaviour made by the duke, at the top of the hierarchical pyramid would be amplified as you go down. People at the bottom will want to know what is going on and the people near the top will try and grab a piece of power. ...read more.

Middle

The laws in Vienna have not been used for a long time and now are useless at protecting the people and the city, much like a rusty set of armour that has been "hung by th'wall" as Claudio describes them.. They normally protect people but they have been discarded and now are useless. Now the city is full of crime depravity and all the suburbs are full of Brothels. The Duke has discarded the laws so that the people of the city like him. He no longer likes his job as he has a lot of responsibility and is depended on. He feels isolated because of all the pressure of people behind him trying to get his power. ...read more.

Conclusion

He tells the Friar that he is going back to the city to see how it is going without him and to see if Angelo is really as virtuous as he seems. In Scene one the duke decides to leave because he can't take the pressure. Whereas in scene two he says he is leaving because he can't control the people. This shows that he is either not sure why he is leaving; he just doesn't want to be the duke any more or he wants to check up on people when he's not there. When the duke is in disguise Lucio says how the duke had been so slack with the laws and how terrible he was. In act one the speech is very rushed and shows us how much of a rush the Duke is in. ...read more.

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