Richard Iii/Looking for Richard

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  • Topic: Richard III, Al Pacino, Looking for Richard
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HSC Advanced English, Module A: Richard III and Looking For Richard, Essay

Connections of commonality and dissimilarity may be drawn between a multiplicity of texts through an appreciation of the values and attitudes with which they were composed. Accordingly, the values and attitudes of the individual being may be defined as an acute blend of externally induced, or contextual and internally triggered, or inherent factors. Cultural, historical, political, religious and social influences, dictated by the nature of one’s surroundings, imprint a variable pattern of values and attitudes upon the individual. Thus any deviation in any such factor may instigate an alteration of the contextual component of one’s perspective. By contrast, the psychological fundamentals of humanity are sturdy and whilst they partake in the definition of the values and attitudes of the individual, they are unwavering. Shakespeare’s historical play ‘Richard III’ and Pacino’s docudrama ‘Looking for Richard’ confirm such theory through an exploration of the contextual and inherent. A scrutiny of the contradictory forces of humanism and determinism and the function of women as demonstrated by both texts imparts an incongruity of context. Difference is thus conveyed. Conversely, an acknowledgement of the strength of conscience common to both texts suggests an inherent influence. Thus it is through inspection of the prescribed texts that one may distinguish the degree to which the texts converge on inherent matters and diverge on contextual matters.

The contradictory forces of humanism and determinism form a connecting point of intrigue common to Shakespeare’s ‘Richard III’ and Pacino’s ‘Looking for Richard’. Influenced by shifting components of cultural and historical contexts, a difference may be perceived in the professed relationship between the two. Inspired by a cultural renaissance, Shakespeare’s text is responsive of an existent tension between the highly structured and preset...
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