Folly Essay – Twelfth Night
For my essay I have chosen to write about Malvolio. He is Princess Olivia head steward and confidant. In this play Malvolio proves to be an extremely complex character. As straight edged as he tries to be, Malvolio has definitely been stuck by several folly’s. Just as Feste stated in the play, “Folly is like the sun, it shines everywhere.” Folly operates in a way that the person it affects still believes they are acting with reason and logic. This theme is not only seen in Malvolio’s character but it resonates throughout the play. Malvolio is in essence a Puritan. He presents himself as a person who detests festivities and the lighter aspects of life. He is a rigid man, very concerned with maintaining class divisions and lines of social status. He is extremely arrogant and does not approve of reckless behavior. He is disgusted by Sir. Toby and Sir. Andrews behavior throughout the play, and seems to have little to no patience for Feste the Jester. Malvolio proclaims himself to be a loyal servant to Olivia. All of these features that we use to describe Malvolio will eventually play into the follies he is struck by. As the play unfolds and through an in depth analysis of the quote below we can see that Malvolio’s folly is hope. In this essay I will focus on the speech Malvolio makes after reading the forged letter from “Olivia.” (Act II scene 5) "Daylight and champion discovers not more! This is open. I will be proud, I will read politic authors, I will baffle Sr. Toby, I will was off gross acquaintance, I will be point divisive, the very man. I do not now fool myself, to let imagination jade me, for every reason excites to this, that my lady loves me. She did commend my yellow stockings of late, she did praise my leg being cross gartered; and in this she manifests herself to my love, and with a kind of injunction drives me to these habits of her liking. I thank my stars, I am happy...
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