KING LEAR - Act 4 Scene 1, 2, 3, 4 & 5 analysis

  • Created by: S_F
  • Created on: 22-05-22 11:38
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  • Scene 1
    • Edgar is distressed to see his father so helpless and miserable - he is now torn between his disguise and revealing his identity.
    • For Gloucester, clarity of vision brings despair. He has been pushed to the limit of endurance.
    • Scene 2
      • Albany’s reluctance to fight is not due to physical cowardice, but rather to the realisation that his wife and others are behaving immorally.
      • Goneril is presented as being sexually aggressive – there are lots of innuendos and she is the one that actually kisses Edmund.
      • Albany is not a coward. He has become a man of inner strength and integrity and decides to take revenge for Gloucester’s treatment to support Lear’s cause.
      • Scene 3
        • The description of Cordelia emphasises her “holy nature” and forms an essential counter balance to the violence of the language and actions of the previous scenes. Cordelia can be seen as the epitome of Christian femininity; compassionate and loving.
        • As Lear has begun to regain his wits, the clarity of vision has brought with it distress and regret. Father and daughter now share the same emotion: sorrow.
        • Scene 4
          • Cordelia brings a doctor with her - this shows her caring and nurturing side because she has come to save him even though he rejected her.
          • Lear is wearing a crown of weeds; the king is now associated with nature rather than the world of the court, which is fitting given his interest in justice and human nature. The king is no longer wearing a crown of gold.
          • Scene 5
            • Goneril and Regan are presented as evil and full of lust. Regan is jealous of a potential affair between Goneril and Edmund. Regan's overt sexuality becomes more apparent.


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