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King Henry VI Essay

Richard realises that nobody actually likes him. This means that he has not fully succeeded in his dreams, as he previously thought he had. He had succeeded in success but in love and popularity, he was a failure. As Richard wakes up from his dream in Act V Scene iii, the audience feels sorry for him has he is in a highly insecure position and for the first time he realises exactly how many people he has killed and what this may mean for him. However, Richard does not actually admit to feeling deep, burning guilt until the very last scene in the play. This means that although the audience should feel the sense of Richard’s psychological isolation slightly at the end of the play, it has not been in effect throughout the entire play, and therefore is not as striking as the effect of his physical isolation.

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Richard is also isolated in society of all descriptions. The upper class, his family, despises him, perhaps for his appearance, his behaviour or both. An example of this is in Act I scene ii when Richard refers to Elizabeth as ‘sister’ in a sarcastic way. However Elizabeth makes her distaste obviously known when she replies by mocking Richard’s family ties by calling him ‘Brother of Gloucester’. Margaret and the other female characters are also blunt with their comments, as they call him ‘devil’ and ‘cacodemon’ to his face, not caring about his feelings. His ostracism from even lower class society is portrayed in the faces of the citizens in Act III when they are said to be ‘mum’ and ‘deadly pale’.

This would suggest that they are silently opposed to Richard’s actions. At some points during the play, Richard may seem to have formed bonds with Bucking ham, due to comments from Richard such as ‘My other self’ and ‘my oracle’. However these bonds, if even in existence at all are purely political, and Richard abandons Buckingham as soon as he is no longer useful. The audience’s minimal sympathy for Richard is diminished here, as he has no real friends, and his social isolation is mainly his own doing. Because of this, the sense of tragedy at Richard’s death, despite increasing isolation, is low because no living person is really suffering any loss.

Another form of isolation that Richard suffers from is his self-imposed isolation from God. He claims that he is too important to have to worry about God’s law – indeed he uses it as a device to help him become king when he pretends to be holy to win people’s support: ‘And look you get a prayer-book in your hand, / And stand betwixt two churchmen’ (III.vii.)

Furthermore, every time Richard kills somebody (I.e. sins) he separates himself further from God and his need to kill increases. However, as Richard nears his death, he becomes closer to judgement day. Richard is a tyrant: he killed his brother, King Henry VI. This means that has disturbed the divine right of Kings, chosen by God. Naturally, this, according to Elizabethan belief, made God angry, and He showed this by causing the Was of the Roses. Richard, in being a tyrant, has condemned himself to an afterlife of eternal hell and torture, therefore distancing himself from God even further.
Richard realises that nobody actually likes him. This means that he has not fully succeeded in his dreams, as he previously thought he had. He had succeeded in success but in love and popularity, he was a failure. As Richard wakes up from his dream in Act V Scene iii, the audience feels sorry for him has he is in a highly insecure position and for the first time he realises exactly how many people he has killed and what this may mean for him. However, Richard does not actually admit to feeling deep, burning guilt until the very last scene in the play. This means that although the audience should feel the sense of Richard’s psychological isolation slightly at the end of the play, it has not been in effect throughout the entire play, and therefore is not as striking as the effect of his physical isolation.

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Richard is also isolated in society of all descriptions. The upper class, his family, despises him, perhaps for his appearance, his behaviour or both. An example of this is in Act I scene ii when Richard refers to Elizabeth as ‘sister’ in a sarcastic way. However Elizabeth makes her distaste obviously known when she replies by mocking Richard’s family ties by calling him ‘Brother of Gloucester’. Margaret and the other female characters are also blunt with their comments, as they call him ‘devil’ and ‘cacodemon’ to his face, not caring about his feelings. His ostracism from even lower class society is portrayed in the faces of the citizens in Act III when they are said to be ‘mum’ and ‘deadly pale’.

This would suggest that they are silently opposed to Richard’s actions. At some points during the play, Richard may seem to have formed bonds with Bucking ham, due to comments from Richard such as ‘My other self’ and ‘my oracle’. However these bonds, if even in existence at all are purely political, and Richard abandons Buckingham as soon as he is no longer useful. The audience’s minimal sympathy for Richard is diminished here, as he has no real friends, and his social isolation is mainly his own doing. Because of this, the sense of tragedy at Richard’s death, despite increasing isolation, is low because no living person is really suffering any loss.

Another form of isolation that Richard suffers from is his self-imposed isolation from God. He claims that he is too important to have to worry about God’s law – indeed he uses it as a device to help him become king when he pretends to be holy to win people’s support:’And look you get a prayer-book in your hand, / And stand betwixt two churchmen’ (III.vii.)

Furthermore, every time Richard kills somebody (I.e. sins) he separates himself further from God and his need to kill increases. However, as Richard nears his death, he becomes closer to judgement day. Richard is a tyrant: he killed his brother, King Henry VI. This means that has disturbed the divine right of Kings, chosen by God. Naturally, this, according to Elizabethan belief, made God angry, and He showed this by causing the Was of the Roses. Richard, in being a tyrant, has condemned himself to an afterlife of eternal hell and torture, therefore distancing himself from God even further.

However, there is one aspect of Richard’s role on stage that he does not isolate: the audience. He makes them his allies right from the very beginning. The audience understand a lot more of Richard’s wit, sarcasm and dramatic irony than the other characters involved do, and therefore feel in league with Richard in a detached, secretive sort of way. Richard also shares some of his feelings, real or otherwise, with the audience. However, Richard seems so evil a villain, hardly caring about all the murders and sins he commits, he does not seem a person associated with extreme tragedy.

The greatest loss in the play is actually more likely to be that of the young princes, rather than that of Richard. In Act III scene i, the Princes talk happily with their trusted Uncle and ‘Lord Protector’, whom the Uncle know is a multiple-faced villain. The audience feels deep sympathy for the Princes, who are naively trusting but also afraid of being forced to stay in the Tower. Also, one of the Princes also manages to outwit Richard, from which the audience gains extreme respect because many fully mature adults have not been able to achieve this. The princes were happy, witty and intelligent before their murder, and their death seems multiple times worse than the death of Richard – a twisted, villainous, death-driven old man.

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To conclude, the tragedy of Richard III’s protagonist is perceived because of Richard’s attractiveness as a villain and also by the way he defied society’s rules and expectations. However, the audience always recalls his wickedness – the murdering, the lying and the corruption. Therefore, despite Richard’s attractiveness, we never really feel any great loss or waste when he dies.
However, there is one aspect of Richard’s role on stage that he does not isolate: the audience. He makes them his allies right from the very beginning. The audience understand a lot more of Richard’s wit, sarcasm and dramatic irony than the other characters involved do, and therefore feel in league with Richard in a detached, secretive sort of way. Richard also shares some of his feelings, real or otherwise, with the audience. However, Richard seems so evil a villain, hardly caring about all the murders and sins he commits, he does not seem a person associated with extreme tragedy.

The greatest loss in the play is actually more likely to be that of the young princes, rather than that of Richard. In Act III scene i, the Princes talk happily with their trusted Uncle and ‘Lord Protector’, whom the Uncle know is a multiple-faced villain. The audience feels deep sympathy for the Princes, who are naively trusting but also afraid of being forced to stay in the Tower. Also, one of the Princes also manages to outwit Richard, from which the audience gains extreme respect because many fully mature adults have not been able to achieve this. The princes were happy, witty and intelligent before their murder, and their death seems multiple times worse than the death of Richard – a twisted, villainous, death-driven old man.

To conclude, the tragedy of Richard III’s protagonist is perceived because of Richard’s attractiveness as a villain and also by the way he defied society’s rules and expectations. However, the audience always recalls his wickedness – the murdering, the lying and the corruption. Therefore, despite Richard’s attractiveness, we never really feel any great loss or waste when he dies.

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King Henry VI Essay
Artscolumbia
Artscolumbia
Richard realises that nobody actually likes him. This means that he has not fully succeeded in his dreams, as he previously thought he had. He had succeeded in success but in love and popularity, he was a failure. As Richard wakes up from his dream in Act V Scene iii, the audience feels sorry for him has he is in a highly insecure position and for the first time he realises exactly how many people he has killed and what this may mean for him. However, Richard does not actually admit to feeling d
2017-10-18 07:01:25
King Henry VI Essay
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