Hauptseminar: Adaptation of Shakespeare
Dozent: Prof. Dr. Lars Heiler
Spezialist: Henry L.
The Merchant of Venice
Parents & Children
Shakespearan plays are almost always deep-rooted, in the relationship between parents and their Children. The Merchant of Venice presents three parent-child relationships. 1.) Portia and her dead father
2.) Jessica and Shylock
3.) Lancelet and the old and ‘‘sand‘‘ blinded Giobbe Two father-daughter pairings and one comic-son (Lancelet also known as Iobb). 1.) Portia’s relationship with her father, was not perfect. However, it was the most healthy of the three. Even in her occasional resentment of her father’s method of securing her happiness, she still loves him. Portia’s father constructed his will to protect her from fortune hunters and to ensure that she married a man who would value everything Portia is and not merely her money and beauty. “So is the will of a living daughter curbed by the will of a dead father‘‘. Portia however, is obedient and loyal to her father even after his death.
2.) Jessica is disloyal. She meets secretly with Lorenzo and allows him to court her, lying to her father, abandoning him, and stealing from him; she’s hardly the docile, obedient daughter that Shylock takes her for. Jessica’s behavior is a result of Shylock’s treatment of her. Shylock shows her little to no affection and kindness. Shylock sees her as an extension of himself, not a person in her own right which is one oft he reasons why he keeps her lucked up in the house. Days after she has run away, he exclaims in disbelief, “My own flesh and blood to rebel!”
3.) The relationship between Launcelot and his father is not a good one. Launcelot shows a lack of respect for his father when he jests, “Well, my conscience . . . says very wisely to me, ‘My honest friend Launcelot, being an honest man’s son’—or rather an honest woman’s son, for indeed my father did...
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