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How does Shakespeare seek to show that King Lear is a changed character by the end of the play?

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Introduction

How does Shakespeare seek to show that King Lear is a changed character by the end of the play? Concentrate on: * Act1 Scene1 * Act3 Scene4 * Act5 Scene3 * Social and historical context of play * Reaction of audience * Use of language King Lear was written in 1605-1606, the exact date is unknown. It was performed at the Globe theatre on 26 December 1606 and was first published in 1608. The play was written by William Shakespeare who has written 37 other plays for Elizabethan and Jacobean audiences. William Shakespeare wrote the play for King James 1. King James had sons in mind as heirs and not daughters and he might have thought it foolish and stupid to have daughters as heir to the throne as it is in king Lear. King Lear was written for the Jacobean audience. There are two plots in King Lear, both plots are not linked at the beginning but they link at the end when the characters in the two plots get together. The two plots are the main plot and the sub plot. The main plot is about Lear's madness and the sub plot is about Gloucester, Edmund and Edgar the bastard. ...read more.

Middle

Lear cannot face up to the truth about what Cordelia says and so banishes her this shows that Lear is blind and cannot see what is true and what are lies. Lear then banishes Kent because he was trying to explain what Cordelia said was true. Lear also uses the royal "WE" all kings and queens use it but Lear uses it to show of his importance. Lear liked to be seen as a powerful king by repeatedly using WE. Lear throws away the good and keeps the evil who are Goneril and Regan. This scene introduces the theme about the relationship of a parent and child. It also shows that King Lear has created a downfall for himself. Lear is also stubborn and bad-tempered we know this because the way he talks to Kent when Kent tries to stick up for Cordelia. "Come not between the dragon and his wrath'' (Lear) After the love test Goneril and Regan talk about Lear and they themselves say that his age has changed him. Lear thinks his daughters love him whilst they are the ones who plot against him. : "You see how full of changes his age is, the observation we have made of it hath not been little; he always lov'd our sister most, and with what poor judgement he hath cast her off, appears too grossly." ...read more.

Conclusion

Lear admits he was wrong, Cordelia almost certainly knew that, but Lear then goes on blaming Goneril and Regan for his downfall. Lear changes in more than one way but he still has his pride at the end because he goes on blaming Goneril and Regan without realising the part he played, he started it all. Lear knows it was his fault but doesn't want to admit it. "I know you do not love me, for your sisters have, as I do remember, done me wrong" (Lear) In this last scene Lear shows a few changes but mostly he is the same King Lear he was in the first scene. He changes because he asks Cordelia for forgiveness but is the same because he doesn't blame himself for everything that happened but blames Goneril and Regan. In conclusion I think king Lear is a changed character by the end of the play because at the beginning of the play he was proud, selfish and thought only about himself. He didn't want to listen to anyone but himself. But coming to the end of the play he knew it was wrong to banish Cordelia from the kingdom and so went to her and asked for forgiveness. He was also depressed at the end because Cordelia dies; he loses his wealth, power and his three daughters. ...read more.

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