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

Discuss the Ways Your Feelings for Shylock Develop Throughout the Play. What is Your Final Assessment of the Man and How Far do You Feel Your Feelings would be the same as Those Experienced by a Shakespearian Audience.

Extracts from this document...


David Goodwin 16/06/03 Discuss the Ways Your Feelings for Shylock Develop Throughout the Play. What is Your Final Assessment of the Man and How Far do You Feel Your Feelings would be the same as Those Experienced by a Shakespearian Audience. Shylock's first entrance into the Merchant of Venice leaves you with no definite feelings for him. He does not immediately stand out as an enthralling character although neither does he strike you as a selfish person driven by money. Although at this point in the play I believe an audience in Shakespeare's time would have been forced to show dislike towards Shylock just because Shylock is a Jew. In Shakespeare's time Jews were seen as outcasts because the large majority of Britain's population in 15th century were Christians. Today the majority of the people who watch or read the play will be less prejudiced towards Jews. I feel that Shakespeare wanted his audience to feel dislike for Shylock from the beginning of the play because he wanted the audience to support Antonio and also lull the audience under a false sense of security. ...read more.


During Act 3 Scene 1 Shylock is told of his "daughter's flight". Shylock although angered by his daughter's departure seems more engrossed in the news of Antonio's loss of ships at sea; Shylock is delighted by the news of Antonio's missing ships. You now start to feel dislike for Shylock; he is obviously putting his self-satisfaction and welfare before his own daughters this showing a very selfish side of Shylock. This part of the play shows a very nasty side of Shylock's character. Although a Shakespearean audience would have had the contentment of seeing Shylock's own daughter run away they would now be very angered by the fact that Shylock is going to have the upper hand over a demise of a Christian. The audience I feel at this point would have realised that Antonio needed the ships to return for him to repay Shylock's loan. The audience understood that if Antonio did not repay the bond then Shylock would kill Antonio. This is the first time in the play that you actually feel any real dislike for Shylock. I believe Shylock has had all this anger building up inside him and has just decided to let it all go at one single point in the play "My own flesh and blood to rebel!". ...read more.


This shows how our feelings may be exactly the same for Shylock but for two totally different reasons between the two audiences. As the play progresses, your feelings for Shylock progress to as much as despising the man. In the first part of the play, you feel mild pity because of the way Shylock is treated by Christians. In Act 2 Shylock falls out with his daughter and says how he is going to dinner with Bassino only to destroy him. You now start to feel aversion towards Shylock. In Act 3 Shylock is informed of Antonio's missing ships, Shylock is over the moon so much that he forgets about he disappearance of his daughter, this is where you start to feel real resentment towards Shylock. In Act 4 you feel the same due to the way Shylock behaves towards wanting Antonio's pound of flesh. This shows that it was all just an act that Shylock was putting in the beginning of the play and that his true colours came out towards the end of the play. Shylock is shown to be very selfish and driven on destroying the lives of Christians. ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our GCSE The Merchant of Venice 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 GCSE The Merchant of Venice essays

  1. What is your assessment of the presentation of the character and role of Shylock ...

    The fact that Shylock has a sudden change of heart, and decides to dine with the Christians seems very coincedental to the fact Lorenzo and Jessica must elope, and it is all very convenient, even if it does not make much sense.

  2. Is Shylock More Sinned Against Than Sinning? Discuss...

    Shylock is very angry and wants revenge on Antonio, mainly because he is Christian - would he be so anti-Christian if it wasn't for Jessica running away with Lorenzo.

  1. 'How does Shakespeare present Shylock to the audience as both a stereotype and a ...

    It is quite clear that Lorenzo would have had the same opinions as his friends and thus would have looked down on Shylock and other Jews. It is evident that Jessica doesn't have a high opinion of her father as she steals some of her father's possessions.

  2. As we watch and read The Merchant of Venice, our feelings and opinions change. ...

    In addition, Shakespeare uses the metaphor of "Jason and the Argonauts"; where he likens her hair to the "Golden Fleece" that Jason sought, and adds "...Many Jasons come in quest of her." This illustrates the fact that many men put their futures at risk in an attempt to get her, indicating that she is significant and highly commendable.

  1. To what extent would an audience have sympathy for Shylock?

    I will run'. This suggests that Lancelet doesn't particularly like Shylock and describes him as the devil incarnate. This shows that he is expressing his dislike of him quite harshly. The audience would feel sympathetic for Shylock here because Lancelet works for him and he is calling him names behind his back.

  2. Should I Feel Sympathy For Shylock Carstens denied doggiejoy's structuration idea.

    Anybody found doing so will be permanently banned. I believe that Anti-Semitism, racism, religious intolerance and other forms of prejudice are disgraceful. Morally, how is a Jew different to a Christian, or how is a black person different to a white person. All prejudice does is cause separation and only lead to trouble.

  1. José Martínez Ruiz,"Azorín": La voluntad as a regenerational novel.

    characteristics of Mart�nez Ruiz's novel is that the novel does not have a plot. This lack of f�bula is what Mart�nez Ruiz was most criticized and admired for, many believed, especially the realist writers that without f�bula there was no novela.

  2. Why we feel sympathy for Shylock

    The Duke, once again, tries to derail Shylock?s attempts at getting his bond by saying that he is just trying to terrify Antonio with his performance and that he will forgive him at the last minute: ?We all expect a gentle answer Jew!? Shylock is not interested and still insists that he will have his bond.

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