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

HOW EFFECTIVE IS THE OPENING SCENE AS AN INTRODUCTION TO 'THE TEMPEST'?

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

HOW EFFECTIVE IS THE OPENING SCENE AS AN INTRODUCTION TO 'THE TEMPEST'? The opening scene to Shakespeare's last complete play, 'The Tempest' is set out at sea where a ship is struck by a tempestuous storm. This play questions the theme of colonisation and anti-Semitism which were very relevant to America in the seventeenth century. Throughout the first scene it becomes apparent that the cause of their shipwreck was due to Prospero. Prospero who spent a lot of time studying magic asked his brother to take over his Dukes title while he studied magic further; with this he was able to impose a storm over the ship in which his brother, who had refused to return Prospero's title, travelled. The opening scene portrays themes which are distinguished throughout the rest of the play. The raging storm helps to dramatise this scene while the various disputes between several passengers abroad adding to the humour, also making the audience wonder how the progression of time on the island will effect them. ...read more.

Middle

This inappropriate response highlights his insecurity of not being in power and his inability to take orders showing the aristocracies in a negative light, portraying them as shallow and arrogant. This draws parallels to the chaos of society in the sixteenth century. It shows incapable leaders not willing to step back and let someone more competent handle the situation. Antonio and Sebastian both want to "sink wi'th' King". This conveys their vanity, they feel that it would bring them honour after their death however it is apparent that the desire this purely to benefit their own status. Antonio mentions that he has been "cheated out of our lives by drunkards". This enhances the audience's perception of his selfishness. He is criticising those who are trying to save his life through his inability to hand over control. Furthermore, Gonzalo uses misogynous comments enhancing the idea that he is incapable of handling this situation in a constructive manner. He says, "Were no stronger than a nutshell, as leaky as an unstanched wench." ...read more.

Conclusion

There is also the suggestion that the sea equates the characters. They are all in the same position; there is no separation between the treatment of the nobles and the sailors displaying their indifferences despite their various perceptions of themselves in society. The chaotic opening to this play is poignant as traditionally tragedies end in chaos and disorder, maybe giving a forewarning as to the commotion that occurs later in the play. The dramatic tension caused by the storm creates an effective opening to the play as within it it encapsulates many themes and symbols which are relevant to the rest of the play. As a performance it would help to draw the audience into the action and would encourage them to feel inquisitive about the character's destinies. The various characters are clearly depicted within this scene, in this situation the conflict between them is potentially threatening to their lives which again would draw the audience further in. The themes and symbols in the opening scene help to are depicted as continuous plot lines which give the play a linear feel, making it easier to watch. ?? ?? ?? ?? 1 ...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 Tempest 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 Tempest essays

  1. How does Mrs. Doubtfire change peoples lives?

    With Mrs. Doubtfire's presence she becomes more independent and mature. Mrs. Doubtfire in the end gives her time to accept the changes in their family and realise there will be safety in the relationships with those she loves. The boy, Christopher at the start is irresponsible, when asked what he got in his history test he replies: "Don't ask."

  2. 'The Tempest' is centrally concerned with the themes of control and power. How are ...

    The comparison with the "damned witch Sycorax" was made by Prospero himself to symbolise that her "sorceries terrible" and "abhorred commands" led to her banishment from civilisation. Prospero makes this contrast between them because he is using magic for good, therefore he expects the audience to see the difference between them.

  1. The Tempest Written By William Shakespeare - How does the opening scene capture the ...

    The audience relied on the actor's lines and stage directions to supply the time of day and year, and the weather, location, and mood of the scenes. So this play does not successfully appeal to a modern audience, as this would be too boring for them to watch.

  2. How is the theme of magic presented in Act 1 Scene 2 of The ...

    in, they are meant to survive for 1 month on the island, and the person who took up the most challenges wins the prize of up to �1 million. In the tempest, the island is strange and magical, mainly because of the weather in it, and the strange spirits roaming

  1. "The Tempest is full of magic and illusion. Consider the effect this would have ...

    and Iris), and in Act 4 Scene 1, Prospero stages his own masque. At the end of the play, Prospero is re-instated as the rightful Duke of Milan, Miranda and Ferdinand marry, Ariel is set free and Prospero forgives his enemies.

  2. Analysis of 'The Tempest'

    "Here cease more questions. Thou art inclined to sleep." - Prospero Prospero puts Miranda to sleep with his magic as the ship holding his enemies approaches the tempest. However Ferdinand and Caliban's power over Miranda are both different. Ferdinand's power over Miranda is very political in a sense of royalty but is also romantic.

  1. Explore the dramatic impact of the tempest scene in Act 1, Scene 1 in ...

    They had built two boats from the one flagship. However just as The Tempest is full of power struggles a mutiny broke out with attempts to seize stores, spreading of malicious rumours and a bid to murder and govern the isle.

  2. How appropriate do you find this extract (Act 5, Scene 1, from line 216) ...

    Alonso feel remorse - he is in fact rewarding him, or saying that he does not need forgiveness. However, this demonstrates an appropriate ending, as it reveals the character traits of Prospero, which make him a good leader. For example, the fact that Prospero does not want revenge, is a

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