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

The genre of The Tempest.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

The genre of The Tempest: The Tempest is customarily identified as the William Shakespeare's last piece. These marginal issues aside, The Tempest is the forth, final and finest of Shakespeare's great and/or late romances. Along with Pericles, Cymbeline and The Winters Tale, The Tempest belongs t the genre of Elizabethan romance plays. It combines elements of Tragedy (Prospero's revenge/Loss of a royal son) with those of romantic comedy (the young lover Ferdinand and Miranda) and, like one of Shakespeare's problem plays, Measure for measure, it poses deeper questions that are not completely resolved at the end. The romantic gesture is distinguished by the inclusion (and synthesis) of these tragic, comic, and problematic ingredients, and further marked by a happy ending(usually concluding in a masque or dance) in which all, or most, of the characters are brought into harmony. The term romance is given to the comedies written at the end of Shakespeare's career. Pericles, Cymbeline, The Winters Tale and the Tempest. They were written between 1608 and 1612 and are different in style to his earlier comedies. Whilst love and marriage are they key themes in these plays, they focus primarily on the separations and reunions of families and culminate in homecomings, reconciliation's, rebirth and redemption. ...read more.

Middle

In the tempest the plot can be viewed as matching perfectly the typical Elizabethan revenge tragedy, up until the point when Prospero and Miranda are banished on the sea. Bradley claims that we can categorize a play as a tragedy when a person of high rank suffers a fatal fall and experiences exceptional suffering. However when we compare the main characters suffering with that of, for example, Macbeth, we cannot but be struck by the different effect of the reader or audience. By this standard the plays do not fit the tragic pattern [Also, in the tempest there are no deaths, all that were split in the storm were reunited at the end of the play] This point between two styles to which Shakespeare brings us in the last plays, with for example the characters poised just on the brink of death, is neither comedy nor tragedy. This type of scenario has lead to the Tempest being labeled a Tragi-comedy. According to Greenblatt a feature of the tragi-comedies is that they expect us to imagine a turn of events against the evidence of our senses.. ...read more.

Conclusion

This theme of renewal and regeneration is the moral message which ties together not only the disparate elements of style, but also the last plays as a whole. The themes of innocence and experience are tied up in this regeneration, the new offering innocent hope for an older, corrupted generation. Miranda and Ferdinand, unite the broken relations of their fathers and seal the band of reconciliation. In The Tempest Prospero himself can also be seen to embody regeneration and spiritual development, for through his magic he brings about the repentance of Antonio and Alonso, and the marriage which is to achieve the regeneration. Through Prospero also, the disparate styles are united. He is the symbolic figure in which the tragic events are rooted, for he is both victim of revenge tragedy and the hero who suffered from a fatal flaw. So too is he the instigator of the play's romance. With his magic wand we find he has caused the shipwreck of the first act, which initially seemed to be rooted in realism. The mixture of styles in both plays are, then, successfully combined. They work together to produce a unified whole; separately and collectively combing to 'exert [an] energy' which enhances and balances the moral message of Shakespeare's last plays. ...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. Explore Shakespeare's presentation of Caliban in The Tempest. How far do you accept that ...

    "I cried to dream again" this is sensitive. This whole speech shows Caliban's poetic side and tells of his dreams. He says that he's learnt language to curse but when he describes Miranda he is so poetic and persuasive with the extent of her beauty and he even uses a French word.

  2. Caliban In The Tempest

    When Caliban then says in line twenty-eight, "Lo, how he mocks me!" Caliban should speak in a shrill voice to show that he is afraid. He could also stagger over to the corner of the stage and cower to add to this impression.

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

    A key or cay is another name for a small island or islet. An island in a river or lake may be called an eyot. There are 2 main types of islands:- Continental islands, and Oceanic islands. There are also artificial islands.

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

    Iris, Ceres, Juno, Nymphs and Reapers these are spirits that appear by Prospero's will. These are the characters that arrive at Prospero's Island by shipwreck: Alonso he is the King of Naples. When Prospero's brother Antonio, took Prospero's dukedom, it was Alonso who recognized Prospero's brother, sealing Prospero's fate of living in exile.

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

    More commands follow as the urgency increases. However soon afterwards comes the first power struggle of the play as we see the clash between Alonso and the Boatswain. This heats up the intensity of the storm as the Boatswain, first tries to politely tell the king to keep below the deck, then loses his patience and almost commands the king to return to his cabin.

  2. William Shakespear's Tempest

    hounds to chase them away, with all the options he had at his disposal he chose one of the less violent options. This makes him a hero rather then a villain, choosing a "nicer" option to deal with a threat to his life.

  1. Analysis of 'The Tempest'

    When Prospero and Miranda arrived on the island, Prospero using his magic frees a captured spirit Ariel who was imprisoned for many years in a tree by an evil with named Sycorax, whom the island belonged to until she died and could not free Ariel.

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

    This is the kind of ending that would be expected in a masque in the reign of James I: "Now my charms are all o'erthrown, And what strength I have's mine own... ...Since I have my dukedom got... Let your indulgence set me free". The Tempest was written in 1611-12.

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