A Midsummer Night's Dream : a comedy

A Midsummer Night's Dream : a comedy photo

Introduction Shakespeare has used many genres to convey his stories, especially comedies, tragedies and historical plays. A Midsummer Night's Dream is a comedy. A comedy is a kind of drama which is intended primarily to entertain the audience and which usually ends unhappily for the characters. There are: romantic comedies: revolving around love (As you like it). satiric comedies: see French playwright Molière. I - A Midsummer Night's Dream and the convention of comedy Shakespeare was influenced by the concept […]

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Structure in A Midsummer Night's Dream

I - Characters and structure Multiplicity of lines. A Midsummer Night's Dream is remarkable for the many levels of its text. The play is different from Romeo and Juliet or the Taming of the Shrew (which have one main plot) because of the various levels of plots and characters. There are 4 levels: Theseus and Hippolyta, the young lovers, the mechanicals, and the fairies. There are connections between: Theseus & Hippolyta and the young lovers: made by Theseus, member of […]

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Introduction to A Midsummer Night's Dream

Place of the play in Shakespeare's work A Midsummer Night's Dream is one of the most famous and successful Shakespeare's plays. The play is part of the early work of Shakespeare (1554-1616), it was written and performed in 1595-1596, just after The Taming of the Shrew and The Two Gentlemen of Verona. There is a connection between Pyramus & Thisbe and Romeo & Juliet: one character kills himself because he thought his love is dead (tragedy of misunderstanding). It proves […]

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Background of "A Midsummer Night's Dream"

Introduction The characters are set in a given space and time. Shakespeare draws his material from a large body of social background, historical facts and myth: let us see the Greek background, the May festivities, and the fairies and spirits. I - Greek background The play is set in early Greece, in Athens. It is unexpected as so much of the play seems so typically England. Shakespeare was writing at the time where antiquity was the cultural reference, although the […]

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The dramatic quality in "Macbeth"

The order of sins are always strategically ordered : In Act I scene 2, Duncan is told about Macbeth's valorous qualities and Cawdor's sins. In act I scene 3, the witches call Macbeth successively "Thane of Glamis", "Thane of Cawdor" and "King". It creates dramatic irony: we know something about the character that he still ignores. Moreover, the technique of using a prophecy, that is to say a prolepsis tends to add tension and suspense. Violence is present throughout the […]

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Political questions in "Macbeth"

Political questions are typical of the Renaissance: it is due to the inheritance of rulers by divine right. Malcolm, the oldest of Duncan"s sons, is declared heir to the throne and Prince of Cumberland. Like Richard, Macbeth wants to disrupt the natural order of things. At the end of Macbeth, just like in Richard III, the natural order is restored ("Hail, King of Scotland") and the divine right is respected. The feudal social organization is based on duty, loyalty and […]

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Introduction to Macbeth

Introduction to "Macbeth" photo

Macbeth was written by Shakespeare between 1603 and 1606, between Caesar and Hamlet. It is the story of a murderer and usurper, like Richard III or Claudius (Hamlet) from crime to crime to achieve security. Macbeth is a villain but a more humanized character compared to Richard. Macbeth is a noble and gifted man. He chooses treachery and crime, knows them for what they are and is totally aware he is doing evil. Evil is concentrated in Macbeth and Lady […]

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Lord Jim : How is Conrad's first-hand experience of seamanship perceptible throughout the Patna episode ?

Conrad was a sailor and gave us a flavour of seamanship: read ch1-20, there are segments which should not be missed. In Youth (1828), Conrad wrote a fiction based on his first-hand experience as first mate on board a ship called the "Palestine". He was directly involved in an incident: the Palestine caught fire and the team, including Conrad, were obliged to abandon the ship. A trial took place and the team was cleared because they had done everything they […]

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Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad : "A free and wandering tale"

Introduction "A free and wandering tale" about "the acute consciousness of lost honour". Lord Jim is not a simple book that could be called novel: this is too reductive. From a technical point of view it is an idealistic image, a Jamesonian novel. Conrad tries to innovate by rejecting Victorian methods of writing and patterns. In an essay called "The New Novel" (1914), Henry James tries to analyze Conrad's complexity : "Conrad's first care is explicitly to set up a […]

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Relatives in "Cider With Rosie" by Laurie Lee

Cider with Rosie by Laurie Lee : chapter analysis photo

Introduction Laurie Lee belongs to a large family, due to his father's two marriages. The first time, his father got 8 kids but only 5 survived: Marjorie, Dorothy, Phyllis, Reggie and Harold. The second time, with Laurie's mother, he got 4 kids and just 3 survived: Laurie, Tony and Jack. There are 8 members in the family and Laurie is one of the youngest. I. The 3 half-sisters Marjorie: is the eldest. She's a blonde Aphrodite. She's tall, long-haired, and […]

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The Short-Story and the Novel

Introduction The Short Story appeared in the 19th century, inherited from tales and narratives. As Edgar Allan Poe stated it, a Short Story must have a "unity of impression, of totality and of single effect". It could be compared to poetry: consciousness, inner life and the end of the story subjected to many interpretations lead to a sudden illumination from the part of the reader: at a certain point, this latter understands everything. The Novel is based on a principle […]

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Edgar Poe : une Descente dans le Mäelstrom

I. Le cadre L'action se situe au sommet d'une montagne, le Helseggen, sur la côte de Norvège dans la province de Nortland. Le panorama est effroyablement désolé: les falaises surplombantes dramatiquement noires, l'océan extraordinairement hurlant et mugissant, la tempête déchaînée. Dans la mer se forme un grand tourbillon, le Maëlstrom, véritable gouffre: " Le bord est marqué d'une écume lumineuse mais pas une parcelle ne glisse dans la gueule du terrible entonnoir à la prodigieuse puissance de succion. " II. […]

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