Merchant of Venice Essay Outline

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I. INTRODUCTION:
A. Is Shylock a man "more sinned against than sinning,” or does he take his revenge too far in the pursuit of his pound of flesh? B. The wrongs against Shylock climax in the courtroom scene. He has lost his ducats, daughter, and now his religion. C. Thesis: The absolute epitome of selfishness can be described from within Shylock’s character; that selfishness is what prevents any would-be sympathizers from being able to fully commit themselves to Shylock’s case. II. BODY PARAGRAPH 1:

A. Topic Sentence: Being the antagonist and villain throughout the play Shylock must be the antithesis to the general characteristics of the protagonist and supporting cast. B. Shylock was a Jew, a not very admirable quality during the late 16th century in Venice. C. “Shylock, albeit I neither lend nor borrow/ by taking nor by giving of excess” (Act 1, Scene 3, Lines 61-62) D. He is a usurer, something that Antonia literally despises and spits upon.

E. This shows the hypocrisy of Antonio’s actions

F. The daughter of his, Jessica, wishes to be free of him while he cloisters her and denies her liberties in order to keep her for himself.

G. Shylocks character is what fuels him, but the treatment he has had to endure has affected the way the reacts to people. III. BODY PARAGRAPH II:
* A. Transition/Topic Sentence: The power Shylock has to be a constant obstacle is abused often and with no guilt, he is fueled from only the intense urge of revenge. * B. The bond, from which Antonio is tied to, has no loophole from the pound of flesh, even when Bassanio wishes to not be tied to it. * C. “You’ll ask me, why I rather choose to have/ A weight of carrion flesh than to receive/ Three thousand ducats. I’ll not answer that,/ but say it is my humour…” (Act IV, Scene I, lines 40-43) D.Shylock will not allow a counteroffer to his pound of flesh, even though it was offered threefold. * E. Shylock is a direct obstacle to Lancelet’s happiness...
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