Conflicting Perspectives: Julius Caesar V. Good Night and Good Luck

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Explore how Julius Caesar and ONE other related text of your own choosing represent conflicting perspectives in unique and evocative ways.

All texts are deliberately constructed to convey an agenda and a set of values, meaning every composer has a purpose fueled by issues from their context and audience. Conflicting perspectives are used as a vehicle for successfully conveying this purpose to the audience. Through the representation of events, personalities and situations, the responder is susceptible to accept the perspective that the composer has deemed valid or credible. William Shakespeare’s, Julius Caesar is a typical example of a play that was created by a composer that imparts their values to the audience through the use of conflicting perspectives. Also, George Clooney’s 2005 film, Good Night and Good Luck explores the representation of conflicting perspectives towards Communists that reflected the distraught norms of society in 1950’s America.

In both Julius Caesar and Good Night and Good Luck, the composers use personalities of certain characters to express conflicting perspectives. These personalities may be representative the leaders in the society at the time or even the society at large. An important conflict of personalities to be considered in Julius Caesar is Cassius and Brutus’. Cassius is believed to be the main conspirator in charge of killing Caesar and in order to successfully do so, he persuades Brutus to be involved. Cassius’ manipulative personality is demonstrated when he discusses with Brutus that people can manifest their own destiny. “Men at some times are masters of their fates: the fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars but in ourselves, that we are underlings.” Shakespeare uses the Roman Republic as a platform to comment on Elizabethan society. Superstition was a very serious topic in that era and people genuinely believed their fate was in the hands of the Gods. Cassius’ argument to Brutus disregards this concept and as a...
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