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Discuss whether the Merchant of Venice is not worthy of study because the characters in the play do not show their good sides.

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Introduction

In this essay I am going to discuss whether I feel that the Merchant of Venice is not worthy of study because the characters in the play do not show their good sides. I will study the characters and their actions to decide whether I agree or whether I disagree. One of the reasons that I believe we should study it because I believe that the play is about racism, not a racist play. It was designed as a play to be topical at the time as anti-Semitism was a topical issue at the time. Proof of this is when the Jew, Shylock, makes his moving speech of desperation in Act 3 Scene 1, which is full of rhetorical questions to the Christians, saying inside we all have the same emotions and feelings regardless of race or religion. If the play was racist and William Shakespeare was an anti-Semite he would not have written this speech that defends ethnic minorities saying that race does not make a difference to the type of person inside. ...read more.

Middle

The only reasons he gives for this is because of Shylock's friendliness! He calls Shylock, 'the Jew,' so this suggests that his real reason for his hate for his master is because of his race. The actions of Jessica to her father are completely wrong, I believe that she has the right to marry someone of any religion, but she has no right to steal from her own father, this is completely iniquitous. Even though Jessica is disloyal to her father I have concluded that there is a moral in this, she later becomes unhappy after leaving him. She is with her husband after they have just been married; she should obviously be content and joyful, however she is uncomfortable and sad. She claims that this is because of the sweet music she can hear. I believe that this is actually just an excuse and she is beginning to regret her unfaithfulness. It is teaching us that being unfaithful will make you feel guilty inevitably. ...read more.

Conclusion

They both show us that they are only in love for money. We should be teaching our children the right reasons for marriage not for greed of money. Another person that Bassanio appears to only like for his money is Antonio, he only visits him for the purpose of asking for money. He does however show some care for Antonio saying, 'you shall not seal to such a bond for me: I'll rather dwell in my necessity.' We do not know however whether this is true concern or not. I believe that in the play, 'The Merchant of Venice,' that the characters do not always show their good sides, I believe there are mostly moral reasons for this and that the play can teach us a lot. This is why I believe that, 'The Merchant of Venice,' is worthy of study. It teaches about how racism affects people, why it is wrong and how it does not always benefit the racist. It also teaches us how we should be loyal to our parents and that greed does not always benefit us. ...read more.

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