Losing to Gain
In Shakespeare’s play, King Lear, Lear and Gloucester, the two main characters lose a part of their identity. During this process, they also gain a new learning experience. When Lear and Gloucester lose a family member, they come to learn who it was that really loved them. Lear and Gloucester also lose their wealth and material things, and in turn learn lessons about appreciation, humility and equality. Lastly, When Lear and Gloucester lose some form of health; they begin to view things from a healthy point of view. Lear and Gloucester both had to lose a lot, but it is positive because they learn important selfless life lessons.
Blood makes one related, but loyalty makes the related, family. Lear and Gloucester learn this the hard way. In scene 1, Lear arrogantly asked his daughter’s “which one of you shall we doth say love me more” (1.1.56), and in response Goneril and Regan gave extravagant answers; Goneril first saying “Sir, I love you more than words can wield the/ matter/ Dearer than eyesight, space and liberty” (1.1.60-62). Regan also replied with, “I am made of the self mettle as my sister/ and prize me at her worth. In my true heart/ I find she names my very deed of love;” (1.1.56-58). When it came to Cordelia, she refused to speak and when forced to, her answer was short and simple, “I Ablorh2
love you majesty/according to my bond no more nor less” (1.1.101-102). This answer although short, true and sincere, did not please Lear causing him to disown and banish his beloved daughter. Ironically when Lear turned to Regan for shelter, she and Goneril threw him out of the castle into the storm. It was because Lear lost Cordelia did he feel the betrayal of Regan and Goneril saying, “Rumble thy bellyful! Spit, fire! Spout, rain!/Nor rain, wind, thunder, fire are my daughters” (3.2.15-18). Lear realized that he was wrong in judgment and that Goneril and Regan did not love him as they say they did. Gloucester also loses Edgar and therefore...
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