The Merchant of Venice themes

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  • Created on: 24-01-17 20:23
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  • The Merchant of Venice themes
    • self interest vs love
      • Shylock is only interested in money and material goods
        • money becuase jews werent allowed to do much else
        • "o my ducats! o my daughter!" - value money as much as his daughter
          • HOWEVER Act 3 - Hurt as ring given to dead wife before marries
      • Anttonio wants to marry Portia for money
        • quote
      • Seems like Christians value human relationships>business & Shylock interested in money
    • Hatred
      • Antonio and Bassanio hate shylock because he is Jewish
      • Shylock hates antonio beause he is christian and for lending out money without interest
        • "I hate him for he is a Christian. But more that in low simplicity He lends out money gratis..."
        • Shylock hates Anotonio because antonio spits on him
          • "You, that did void your rheum upon my beard And foot me as you spurn a stranger cur"
            • 'cur = dog' -called dog- like names
      • hatred at trial - shylock sharpens knife before verdict - excited about revenge
        • "why dost thou wet thy knife so earnestly?" [Bassanio] - whet means snarpen
    • prejudice
      • Portia's disdain of Morocco
        • "if he have the condition of a saint and the complexion of a devil, I had rather he should shrive me than wive me"
      • Shylock prejudice against Christians
        • "I hate him for he is a Christian"
        • "....I will buy with you, sell with you, talk with you, walk with you, and so following, but I will not eat with you, drink with you, nor pray with you"
      • Against Shylock
        • "The Devil can cite scripture for his purpose"
        • Called "The Jew" and "dog"
    • Mercy and Justice
      • Shylock determined to get revenge on Antonio - even when offered money
        • "My deed upon my head! I crave the law, The penalty and forfeit of my bond"
        • "Bond" connotations
      • portia talks about mercy 'the quality of mercy is not strained. It droppeth as the gentle rain from heaven'
        • portia shows mercy when she confinves Duke not to execute Shylock
        • Differing ideas about mercy & justice. Portia = christian idea (turn the other cheek)            Shylock = (eye for an eye)
      • Shylock - Christians hypocritical about mercy


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