Comparative Literary Essay

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Comparative Literary Essay- The Merchant of Venice- Antonio and Shylock are both villains In the play, The Merchant of Venice, written by William Shakespeare, the character Antonio is shown as the protagonist, and Shylock is shown as the antagonist. Although this is how the author wanted the audience to feel, some would disagree and state that both Antonio and Shylock show qualities of an antagonist and can be viewed as villains for different reasons. Shylock was a very ruthless man, he only wanted money, and he was racist. These qualities make him a villain. But Antonio, he put all the blame of the merry bond on Shylock even though he agreed for it, he took all of Shylock’s money, and he was racist as well. Although Antonio had done all these things to Shylock, and ruined his life, everyone sees Antonio as the protagonist and only Shylock as the villain. Everyone sees Shylock as a villain because he was the Jew that wanted revenge, but Antonio did bad things too. (quote “hath not a jew….”… Shylock talking about how jews are treated poorly) In the play, The Merchant of Venice, there is no protagonist because both Antonio and Shylock show villainous traits. The characters of Shylock and Antonio are shown with many different conflicts to face in the play, to show the audience their true qualities. Antonio is shown as a kind merchant living in Venice. He is shown as a great friend, a good businessman, and a caring person in general. He is the ideal friend to Bassanio because he risked so much just so that Bassanio could take Portia’s hand in marriage. He agreed to a bond that could have gotten him killed, just for Bassanio’s sake. He is also shown as a good man otherwise because in the plot of this play, it shows that he has many friends and that a lot of people like him. Shylock, on the other hand, is shown as the typical villain. He hates all Christians, he is a cruel moneylender, and he tortures his daughter and servant. Shylock shows hate for all Christians...
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