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Flamineo in the prominent revenge tragedy John Webster play, The White Devil.

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Introduction

Flamineo Flamineo is a central, and key character in the prominent revenge tragedy John Webster play, 'The White Devil'. Flamineo is the secretary of the Duke of Brachiano. He has two siblings in the play: Marcello and Vittoria. In the early stages of the play his immoral and evil actions such as the murder of Camillo in act two scene two are defined by his position as Brachiano's secretary, however from act five Flamineos true nature begins to emerge. He's developed into a tragic, ruthless figure and the quotation in act five ''at myself I will begin and end'' is a clear indicator of the events which are about to unfold and an insight into Flamineo's true intentions. The view of a critic of Flamineo is '' Flamineo is utterly immoral; he will do anything, anytime, to advance himself, regardless of the cost to others.''. This critical view of Flamineo immediately shows similarities to the critical view of Iago from the Shakespeare play 'Othello'. Iago, like Flamineo would be willing to do anything and betray those most loyal to him in order to advance himself and promote his own cause regardless of the consequence for others. ...read more.

Middle

Flamineo kills his sisters husband, Camillo, as it would then allow Brachiano a very wealthy man to marry his sister Vittoria. The reason he does this is to promote himself, and become rich. He doesn't take into account he has just murdered an innocent, unsuspecting, pleasant man and his sisters husband just so he can benefit from it. He shows no remorse. All this draws attention to an important question: Is Flamineo immoral or amoral? A question which is also asked of Iago. Is Flamineo aware of morals, and moral behaviour however chooses to ignore it, or is he totally oblivious of morals and a unscrupulous, unprincipled character. I believe he is the latter, I think he is amoral and ignorant of any moral thought and behaviour. As an immoral person would probably feel remorse, or acknowledge what they are doing is not right. However there is no sign of remorse or repentance from Flamineo and in no particular time has Flamineo shown any signs of moral doing. His behaviour is so shocking it even suprises Brachiano who is suppose to know what Flamineo is upto, this further enforces the point of amorality. To Flamineo, money and fortune is the most important to him, he values money and status above family loyalty. ...read more.

Conclusion

His view of women represents mens view of women at the time. He has a negative and degrading outlook on women, he goes as far as likening women to 'cursed dogs' when he says in act one scene two '' women are like cursed dogs, civility keeps them tied all daytime, but they are let loose at midnight; then they do most good or most mischief.''. Not only does he degrade women, he actually pimps his sister further himself, Cornelia's reacts by saying ''My fears are fall'n upon me, O my heart! My son the pander''. Flamineo is the central character in the play, the central character represents corruption. Flamineo is a catalyst for action. Webster includes rhyming couplets in various parts of the play. In act two scene two Cornelia uses a rhyming couplet: ''Whose regular example is so strong, they times by them go right or wrong'' then is act two scene one Isabella says ''And think with what a piteous and rent heart I shall perform this said ensuing part''- Rhyming couplets are method for Webster uses for the characters to gain sympathy from the audience. Another important factor Webster includes is switching the conversation from pro's to verse. When Flamineo and Brachiano are conspiring they are talking in pro's however when Camillo comes in they revert to speaking in prose. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...read more.

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