King Lear Act 3 Questions

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King Lear Act III Study Questions
Scene I
1. Kent reveals to the Gentlemen that tension between Regan’s husband (Albany) and Goneril’s husband (Cornwall) could quite possible result in a civil war. However, aside from the war, the two may be united in plotting against the murder of King Lear. The King of France is preparing to make a move against these two divided house. He may have already sent spies to their households disguised as servants. 2. The mission that Kent asks the Gentlemen to complete is to go to Dover, the place where Cordelia lives, and inform her of how insultingly he was treated by Goneril and Regan. Also, in order to make sure that Cordelia knows the message sent is from him, he instructs to the Gentlemen to also deliver his ring to her. Scene II

3. Shakespeare portrays the great emotional upheaval going on within Lear’s mind by showing us an iconic image of Lear as a white-haired man standing in the middle of a thunderstorm and literally yelling at the sky, “Blow winds and crack your cheeks! Rage, blow!” When we see this, we are able to see the extent of his troubled mind since it seems like only a deeply impacted individual would commit to such task or wish to appear as he does. The actual storm that is occurring on the outside is representative of the “storm” going on inside Lear’s mind. We see this when he talks about how upset he is with his daughters and that ungrateful children should cease to be born. 4. The comment about women that Lear makes in his speech is that “thou perjured, and thou similar of virtue, that are incestuous… that under covert and convenient seeming has practiced on man’s life” (3.2. 57-60). 5. Kent’s opinion of the storm’s ferocity is that “such bursts of horrid thunder, such groans of roaring wind and rain I never remember to have heard,” showing the intensity of the storm. 6. When King Lear remarks that “I am a man more sinn’d against than sinning,” it reflects his development as a human being within the play because he comes to realize that he has lost everything. He went from being the King of Britain all the way down the ladder to an individual who has menial value in society. Finally, we come to see that he realizes the big mistake he made by disinheriting Cordelia from his inheritance and giving Cordelia and Regan his kingdom. He is losing so much confidence that he wants to play the part of the victim and believe that everyone is taking advantage of him, without withholding responsibility for the fact that he was the one who acted harshly when he disowned Cordelia. 7. The fool evaluates the state of Britain in his closing “prophecy” by foreshadow its dark future and when it “will come to great confusion,” when priests become corrupt, when pickpockets stop preying on large crowds, beer-makers will water down their beverages, and when “bawds and whores” build churches. However, this if kind of funny because all this is already occurring in Britain and it has already began its decline. Additionally, he predicts that Merlin will make the same prophecy in the future. Scene III

8. Upon hearing Gloucester’s request to pity the king, Regan, Goneril, and Cornwall are not pleased but also have a nonchalant attitude towards it because they’re not going to let anything convince them of bringing back their father. Their cruel and ruthless come out when they ask Gloucester not to mention Lear’s name in pain of “perpetual displeasure.” They are concerned with their own well-being and do not care whatsoever for the king. 9. The information that Edmund shares with the audience after his father tells him about the “dangerous” letter is that although it is against his father’s request, he will tell the duke that Gloucester is going to see the king, which is forbidden. Also, being the selfish and deceitful person as he is, Edmund states that Gloucester will get what he wants and he will get everything that is left behind. Scene IV

10. At the...
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