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Materialism and Domination in Ben Jonson's Volpone - Research Paper Example

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Name: University: Tutor: Course: Date: Introduction Materialism has been defined in very many ways by different literature people, the English dictionary defines materialism as a belief that only material things such as money, possession and physical comforts exit…
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Materialism and Domination in Ben Jonsons Volpone
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Materialism and Domination in Ben Jonson's Volpone

Download file to see previous pages... The concept materialism is many times associated with political nature where, agents of politics are seen as materialist. Marxist provided us with knowledge of how the society works and thus, poets and philosophers can predict how the society will behave over time (Friedman, 1974). When you look at Marxist versus historical materialism the idea of a society developing from one stage to another can be seen although such transition is characterized by several conflicts that arise between social relations and productive forces. Marxist believed that a change in ideas could not change the society because dominant ideas that the reformers use to bring change to the society are embedded in material conditions. In the play “Volpone” various characters portray acts of materialism and dominance among and against each other. In this play, two characters by the name Volpone and Moscow play the servant master relationship, for an individual to employ a servant, he must possess some material things such as money, physical comforts which can be seen by the way a person spends his jewelry, his clothes and behavior around other people. Servants normally would be submissive to their master and follow their masters’ instructions to the letter. ...
For example, in the capitalist exploitation of labor is a common phenomenon as portrayed by Marxist. In the play a similar behavior is seen in Volpone, he wants to exploit the likes of Voltore, Corbaccio and Corvino. Because he possesses a significant amount of vast wealth with no heir and he knows that several people would fall prey in his trap in the quest to be named the beneficiary of his wealth or at least be given a portion of the wealth. Volpone thinks that because he owns material wealth he can easily dominate over peoples thoughts. This is evident in the actions of the three characters, Voltore, Corbaccio and Corvino, who bring him gift after gift hoping their generosity to the sick man will be repaid in tenfold. It is so ironic that even though Volpone’s servant has no wealth he is able to manipulate him contrary to his expectation. Mosca plots a lot of schemes for his master and the other three individuals, Voltore, Corvino, and Corbaccio, portraying his desire to dominate above everyone. The desire for wealth is a common phenomenon in this play, Volpone, Mosca, Corvino Corbaccio and Voltore all desire wealth. In their pursuit to achieve this goal, they seek to outdo each other in the different plots they come up with. Volpone and Mosca seek to cheat the lawyer, the merchant and the old miser who is also on the verge of dying, on the other hand, Mosca is encouraging the three to continue bringing gifts to his master, he does this intentionally because he has a plan that will benefit him. Volpone has a great desire to accumulate as much gold as he can, he says to his servant “I long to have possession of my new present”, his servant uses ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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