Explore Shakespeare's presentation of EITHER Cleopatra OR Antony in Act three Scene thirteen. How typical is their presentation here of the rest of the play?The presentation of Cleopatra in Act three Scene thirteen

Authors Avatar

Explore Shakespeare's presentation of EITHER Cleopatra OR Antony in Act three Scene thirteen. How typical is their presentation here of the rest of the play?

The presentation of Cleopatra in Act three Scene thirteen is quite ambiguous. Her presentation in the rest of the play is also very contrasting and distinct. I believe Shakespeare concentrated on demonstrating Cleopatra's personality and ambiguity to emphasise that, being the only central female in the play, it is even more surprising that she manages to act the way she does, with such an alarming range of emotions, for example forging illness for attention and accusing Antony of leaving Egypt for the wrong reasons. I think that Shakespeare wanted her character to be spontaneous, dramatic and attractive towards men so that the audience would build up very strong opinions of her, whether they are good or bad.

Throughout the play so far, Cleopatra has been presented as a very confident woman who adores playing numerous tricks with Antony. By Shakespeare creating the sense that Cleopatra controls Antony through her witty actions and words, it re-enforces her role in the novel as an independent, slightly deceitful woman. (1.1.14) 'If it be love indeed, tell me how much', this displays Cleopatra's clear determination in wanting to know how she is thought of by Antony. Shakespeare presents Cleopatra like this to prove that both her image and personality are very important to her because she is so desperate to know what Antonys opinion of her is. Here, Shakespeare's presentation of Cleopatra highlights her unique female qualities in a way that represents women throughout the play and Cleopatra as an individual. I believe this works well because the other main characters in this play are males and so are in contrast to the stereotypical female behaviour.cocc ccr seccccw orcc cck incc focc cc.

Cleopatra's persistency is shown when she answers Antony back instantly demanding the truth. Again she is shown as 'playing certain games'. Perhaps she is required to act like this toward Antony to declare herself in the male-dominated situation in which the play is set.

Most of the time in the play, Cleopatra does not need to be persistent towards Antony because he listens to first time, for example in Act three Scene seven when Antony is debating to himself whether to fight at sea or land, Cleopatra tells him confidently that he should fight at sea. After she makes this remark, Antony refuses to change his mind even though both Camidius and Enobarbus try to persuade him not to fight at sea. This emphasises Cleopatras easy control over Antony even more.

At the beginning of the play in Act one Scene three, Cleopatra is heard having a conversation with her two personal attendants about the ways in which you can attract a man. Cleopatra's side of the argument, (1.3.2) 'See where he is, who's with him, what he does: I did not send you. If you find him sad, Say I am dancing, if in mirth, report that I am sudden sick', presents her as an extremely jealous person. Shakespeare implies that Cleopatra is like this maybe because she literally cannot trust anyone as the majority of people around her are men and will not understand her as well as another female character would. If Shakespeare did have another prominent female character in the play, I do not think it would convey the same meaning because having one strong female character highlights the femininity well enough. muby_ishfaq, please do not redistribute this writing. We work very hard to create this website, and we trust our visitors to respect it for the good of other students. Please, do not circulate this writing elsewhere on the internet. Anybody found doing so will be permanently banned.

Join now!

This line (1.3.2) also implies that Shakespeare was trying to show that women (in particular Cleopatra) want to be looked after and treated well but do not want to be looked down on; they especially do not want to be seen as being jealous in anyway because this would make them seem weak to any males that they want to impress. I think Shakespeare has presented Cleopatra very carefully and has taken into account the stereotypical female life in this time.

In the sixteenth century, the effect on the audience of Cleopatra's strong, powerful presence that shines through continuously in ...

This is a preview of the whole essay