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Caliban in The Tempest - Essay Example

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The play “The Tempest” is believed to be written when the concept of post colonialism was a bone of contention. Analyzing its entire concept and theme, one would realize the fact that the natives are the real sufferers of international political strategies. …
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Caliban in The Tempest
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"Caliban in The Tempest"

Download file to see previous pages The Shakespearean Drama “The Tempest” involves some ever relevant concepts and characteristics. This play would remain pointless without the distinctive character Caliban who represents the victims of colonization, precisely the natives. Caliban is portrayed as someone who undergoes suffering for no reason in his own region which is captured by a foreigner Prospero. Coupled with certain circumstances and inefficiency, Caliban falls into the bondage of slavery. Significantly, the sufferings of Caliban no matter physical or mental greatly resemble the suffering natives in captured regions. In the play, Caliban is merely a savage or uncivilized ‘half-human, half-monster’ creature whom Prospero dominates and tries to civilize by imposing different tasks on him. Arguably, this was how the so called ‘Prosperos’ perceived their captives. Caliban may have his own reasons for showing unwillingness to accept a foreign culture. Hence, being a slave, Caliban intends to finish Prospero who is mighty and highly ambitious. But Caliban fails in the attempt to kill Prospero even though he is assisted by Trinculo and Stephano. Bloom and Heims put this relation in this way; “Caliban, very much concerned with revenge, also takes on taint anality through the words of Trinculo and Stephano” (227). This is an attempt to regain the island which belongs to him as hereditary property or possession. This resistance clearly illustrates the unsuccessful movements evolved in certain captured regions after the realization of belongingness. Often these revolutions and revolts were emerged once they were fed up with ill-treatment and domination. And it was reasonable that they sought aid from others to wipe out the illegally invaded outsiders. Hence, it is essential to make a comparison between Prospero and Caliban in this context. Prospero realizes his target, makes preparations and waits for the opportunity to avenge his foes whereas, Caliban too realizes his target but fails to make preparations accordingly to execute the plan in a right manner. Therefore, Caliban’s failure is a clear outcome of one’s emotional reaction against a crisis without realizing one’s own potential and weakness. Caliban as a post colonialism representative should have improved his own potential to resist the occupation of Prospero on the island rather than being foolish to seek external assistance. Knowing the past has greater influence in understanding the present better. Therefore, Shakespeare clearly analyzes the past of Caliban who is a resident of this particular island. The drama indicates that Caliban being the son of the witch Sycorax undergoes a tragic experience that continues with the arrival of Prospero into the island. The most significant change takes place with the departure of Sycorax. The death of Sycorax makes Prospero more powerful that even Caliban is enslaved by him. This entire concept can be interpreted by interconnecting the invading role of different powerful kingdoms to many underdeveloped and uncivilized regions across the world and their ill-treatment to the nationalities. This enslavement completely consumes the hope of freedom and liberty. Since Caliban being the servant is made to perform every action for the benefit of the master Prospero. However, it indirectly assists the progress of the natives although it is not deliberate. One such act is pointed by Lazarus as “it is something commonplace in postcolonial literary studies that, like Shakespeare’s Caliban colonized people were able to appreciate a language that was imposed on them and use it to their own ends” (144). It is the similar case witnessed in many captured regions as they are compelled to fulfill the ambition of the mighty, powerful rulers who captured them. Specifically, speaking upon the career of Caliban is demanding as he is the prime sufferer of the play. Moreover, the revolt and dissatisfaction begin from the very moment when Caliban is captured and enslaved. Apart from ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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