Examine The Theme Of Deception In "Much Ado About Nothing" Much Ado About Nothing is a social, romantic, Shakespearean comedy. This suggests that the characters involved will work through a series of events and come out as better people. The key idea in this play is deception. It appears in many forms, both positive and negative; positive deception resulting in good, reflecting the joyful, carefree nature of Messina (the town in which the play is set), and negative resulting in disruption, both in the characters involved and in what Messina stands for. Shakespeare uses a character like Don John as a catalyst for the negative deception. This doesn't require a well thought out character, he merely has to say the right things to invoke the reactions required by Shakespeare. The personalities of Benedick and Beatrice are used for most of the beneficial deception. At the beginning of the play Don Pedro, Claudio, Benedick, Don John etc are returning from war. The first speech between Benedick and Beatrice sets up the apparent tension between them. This is implied when Leonato says, before Benedick has arrived, "There is a kind of merry war betwixt Signor Benedick and her". This could be seen as a form of deception, where the two characters involved are deceiving themselves in so much that they do love each other really. Benedick is determined that love is not for him. He is the
GCSE English and English Literature- Shakespeare Discuss how Shakespeare creates the character of Benedick in Much Ado About Nothing Much Ado About Nothing is a romantic comedy by William Shakespeare. The play was first published in 1600 and first performed in the winter of 1598-99. It is set in the picturesque and scenic town of Messina in Italy. Leonato, the governor of Messiana, lives with three relatives. Hero, his shy and "short" daughter, Beatrice his witty niece, who is an orphan and lastly his elderly brother Antonio. The play follows the lives of the two couples, Benedick and Beatrice and Claudio and Hero. In the first scene, Claudio declares his love for Hero to his best friend Benedick, whom after his argument with Beatrice expresses his extreme dislikeness for the very idea and love in general. Don Pedro (the prince of Aragon) along with the other characters, decide to spend their week in Messina to get their close friends Benedick and Beatrice to stop arguing and declare there love for each other, as they are clearly made for each other. Benedick, who is alone in the orchard at the time, considers the changes he can see in Claudio's character now he's in love with Hero. Meanwhile, Don Pedro, Leonato and Claudio set the trap, which will completely reform Benedick's character. They pretend to talk amongst themselves, knowing
Dominick Vargas 4/20/04 Benedick's Change Throughout all of Shakespeare's comedies, there is no other character like Benedick. This is because Benedick undergoes a transformation like no other. The Character of Benedick appears in Shakespeare's comedy, "Much Ado About Nothing." Benedick is a good, honorable man, but his only problem is that he does not like to, or want to, fall in love. At least, this is how he felt at the beginning of the play. By the ending of the play he was willing to get married. So how did this change came about and why? In act one of the play, one can see almost immediately Benedick's opinion on love and women. Some of his first lines are Beatrice and him bickering with one another. This was started because he said, "...I would I could find in my heart that I had not a hard heart, for truly I love none." What he is saying here is that he dose not think of himself as a cold hearted person, but just someone who can not fall in love. Of course Beatrice, who goes through almost the exact same change as Benedick, would not pass up an opportunity and made a joke about that comment. Even after Beatrice leaves, Benedick begins talking to Claudio. Here he calls himself a, "tyrant to their sex," with the word "their" meaning woman. This shows that Benedick is not just flirting with Beatrice because his thoughts and comments about love are the
Explore the ways 'Much Ado About Nothing' presents love. Shakespeare is well known for presenting the full repertoire of human emotions, and love is no exception. Much Ado About Nothing is unquestionably a play about love. Shakespeare provides the audience with a whole gamut of lovers from the banal Claudio and Hero to the rebellious Beatrice and Benedick. It is this range which allows Shakespeare to critique the conventions and perceptions within his renaissance society This variance in love and lovers also serves to inform the audience of the many different faces of love, and to further the plot, for example it is Margaret's brand of free love that causes the turning point in the play. The comparisons drawn between Beatrice and Benedick's love and the superficial love of Hero and Claudio are typical of the constant contrasts that Shakespeare builds into this play, comical or otherwise. It is in this way that Shakespeare manages to cross-reference almost all of his characters with each other; ` the 'wise' Beatrice with the 'modest' Hero, the 'valiant' Benedick with 'Sir boy,' the young Claudio. This emphasises their strengths and highlights their weaknesses respectively. By this he makes them more interesting, and so more realistic, pointing out things about the society in which the play was written, and about human relationships as a whole. One of the topics Shakespeare is
Deception is one of the main themes of 'Much Ado about Nothing'. Discuss. The plot in 'Much Ado about Nothing' is based upon a series of deceptions and lies. There are good deceptions and bad deceptions throughout the play, but in the end, good wins over evil. In Act I, Don Pedro, Prince of Arragon, returns to Messina, Italy from a war with his bastard brother Don John. Count Claudio of Florence and Signor Benedick of Padua accompany Don Pedro. Don John is accompanied by his followers, Borachio and Conrade. Signor Leonato is governor of Messina, and with him is his brother, Signor Antonio. Leonato's heir is Hero, his only daughter, and his niece is Beatrice, an orphan. In Act I scene i, we see the 'skirmish of wit' between Beatrice and Benedick. Throughout the play, there are not many mentions of why Beatrice and Benedick continue their 'merry war', although in Act II scene i, Beatrice speaks of how she gave 'a double heart for his single one'. This suggests that they have had a previous encounter where Benedick broke her heart. The first of the deceptions take place in Act II scene i, the masqued ball. In this, all of the men wear masks to hide their identity, which is a huge deception in itself. The first deception at the masqued ball is a good one. Don Pedro woos Hero while pretending to be Claudio. Don John hears of this and decides to take advantage of the situation.
Benedick's Diary Today seems like a dream, I still cannot truly believe what I have discovered. Well, I suppose I had better start at the beginning - I was sitting in the orchard this afternoon, deciding on the virtues that would be required of my future wife, when I suddenly heard Don Pedro, Leonato and Claudio approaching. Without thinking, I jumped into the bushes but instantly regretted doing so as I realized I would have to remain there until they returned to the house after finishing their long and boring conversation about love. Nobody noticed that I was hidden in the bush, and the three men sat down on the bench and prepared to listen to Balthasar's singing. What followed was the soppiest and most pathetic song I have heard in a long while. I prepared myself to be bored stiff and was almost in utter despair when suddenly Balthasar was sent away and the men began talking in a quite different tone. I sat up instantly when I heard my name mentioned and began to eavesdrop on their conversation. They talked about how Beatrice had "an enraged affection" for me. Beatrice of all people! The way she talks and acts around me I would have thought she despised me, but now I find out that she is in love with me! It is just too much to take in. They said that the reason she dares not tell me of her love is that I would "make but a sport of it, and torment the poor lady
Shakespeare Course-work Unit. How does Shakespeare Make Act 4 Scene 1 exciting and dramatic? Act 4 Scene 1 is a very dramatic and exciting scene, because it give the story that all-important twist. It opens up the story and keeps the suspense going. Shakespeare builds up to Act 4 scene 1, to make the scene more enjoyable and exciting for us as an audience. He does this using dramatic irony. In Act 3 Scene 2 L: 60-100 Don John convinces Don Pedro and Claudio that Hero is not "a maid" in this sense meaning virgin. Don John uses the words "Leonato's Hero, your Hero, every man's Hero." (3,2 L: 78) This is shocking here because it strongly suggests that Hero is not a woman for one man, but every man's woman, she is nothing but a "common stale." Claudio tells Don John that if he is given proof he will not marry her. He says (3,2 L91-92) "If I see anything tonight, why I should not marry her tomorrow in the congregation, why I should not wed, there will I shame her." This is telling us that he is prepared to humiliate her and embarrass her in front of every one in the congregation. Thus the audience is left awaiting a dramatic showdown, knowing that the most character in the drama are expecting events to proceed happily. We know that Claudio can be easily manipulated making it more believable for us as an audience. We would expect Claudio to defend Hero but he believes what he
How does Shakespeare challenge the conventional role of women within the patriarchal society of Much Ado About Nothing.
How does Shakespeare challenge the conventional role of women within the patriarchal society of 'Much Ado About Nothing'. 'Much Ado About Nothing' is set in a patriarchal society in the late 16th century. In a patriarchal society, men are the dominating sex and women are the oppressed ones. The title of the play also plays a part in showing how things are overly based on sexual relationships between men and women. The play takes place over a course of three days. As so much happens during these three days, the events take place rapidly and can create confusion and misunderstanding. 'Much Ado About Nothing' is a play of wit, deception and slander. It is full of darkness just as much as it is full of light. For Beatrice, a pre-occupation with death arises from her entrapment within a court whose practices she does not admire. She constantly tries to oppose the views of her society with which she doesn't agree. The treatment of gender issues in 'Much Ado About Nothing' would have been central to its impact on Elizabethan audiences. Women, stereotypically, were expected to be silent, gentle, passive and submissive. Independent women were regarded with suspicion and interest. In the first three scenes, the male characters continually criticise the females. Benedick voices the traditional patriarchal ideology through his constant criticism of women's actions and sexual
Chris Ramsdale Much Ado About Nothing C/W In what ways is Act 4 scene 1 a significant scene in, 'Much Ado About Nothing'? The witty comedy Much Ado About Nothing (1599) is marred, in the opinion of some critics, by an insensitive treatment of its female characters. The play Much Ado About Nothing is a comedy, which was written in the reign of Elizabeth I. In this era comedy had a slightly different meaning, human folly. This meant that in the time it was written the play was about people with a foolish nature. Although the play is a comedy, it also has a serious nature that is reflected in act 4 scene 1. This often leads to lyricism and ambiguity and shear despair. This makes this scene stand out, and also makes it a turning point in the play. Also Shakespeare played with the words on the title, as the word nothing in Tudor times also sounded like noting, which in Much Ado About Nothing is observing. The punning on 'nothing and noting in the title suggests from the start that the play will be concerned with ways in which people perceive one another. Characters are continually faced with questions: 'can I be certain that what I see, or hear, or know is true? Their difficulties are often caused by the deliberate deceptions of others, but equally often stem from self-deception or their own human failibility. Act 4 scene 1 also explores the role of woman in the time it was
How would a contemporary audience of Much Ado About Nothing know that it was a comic play? Elizabethan comedy was a big part of the culture. When Elizabeth came to the throne, she reinstated Protestantism as the country's religion. Many disliked these ideas, many wanted to be Catholic. But she did amazing things. She beat the Spanish Armada. People rejoiced and enjoyed being English, many children were born soon after and many people started to write and entertain this new generation. And soon in 1590, Shakespeare wrote his first play. He wrote Much Ado About Nothing about the same time the Globe Theatre was built, in 1599. He had written a few comedies before, all having similar features. Much Ado About Nothing and Twelfth Night both end in two marriages, involve disguises, lower-class characters as comic relief and involve courtly love. Other than comedy Shakespeare wrote tragedies, probably more famous than his comedies. They were very different, for example Othello, (some say the tragic re-work of Much Ado About Nothing), involves many deaths, credible villains and hatred. Shakespeare very typically uses two young lovers, the courtly love relationship and another more odd couple. There are lower class individuals adding to the comedy. But Shakespeare didn't just write comedy for the laughs. Many characters symbolise certain things, for example Hero represents innocence.