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Courses in King Lear by William Shakespeare Satisfying, hopeful, and redemptive: a few critics would say that these figures belong nowhere close to an outline of King Lear. One critic, Thomas Roche, even says that the play's ending is "as gloomy and unrewarding as guy can reach out the gates of hell" (164). Certainly, Roche's pessimistic interpretation has merit; after all, Lear has witnessed almost everyone he once cared for die before dying himself. Although this element of the drama is accurate, agreeing for this negative view demands a person to believe that Lear learns nothing and that he suffers and dies in vain. Really, this is precisely what Roche believes when he says that at the play's conclusion, "Lear nevertheless cannot tell good from bad... or true from false" (164). This nihilistic strategy, however, not only disregards a lot of the drama's minutes of philosophical consciousness, but it also totally misinterprets Shakespeare's purpose. That is not to mention that Lear is no fault in the conclusion of the play; as Shakespeare clearly knew, Lear remains human, and as such, he's subject to human frailty. What's most significant about Lear, however, is not that he dies a flawed man but that he dies an improved man. Accordingly, though King Lear might seem "bleak," Shakespeare suggests that Lear's lifetime, and human existence in general, is worth every one of its distress since it's frequently through suffering that individuals gain understanding of the real nature of the individual selves and regarding the nature of all humanity (Roche 164). From the very start of the play, Shakespeare suggests that King Lear has much to understand. Since Maynard Mack explains in his essay "Action and World at King Lear," that the reader/audience is instant...