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The Dysfunctional Family of King Lear One of the reasons why Shakespeare is so completely read today is because of his ability to portray human nature so correctly through his roles. Shakespeare's play, King Lear shows us that people are greedy and reckless. We could also relate to this drama because of the household issues that Shakespeare incorporates throughout the job. Lear's family is definitely a dysfunctional one. However, the disrupted family unit will be the foundation for the play's tragedy. The Contemporary Guide to Literary Terms defines tragedy as "a piece of writing that inspires fear or shame, through which the audience/reader experiences catharsis" (a purging of feelings). Tragic plots need to have a clear beginning, middle and end that all require the protagonist in some manner. It is essential in this drama for King Lear to have serious family problems for him to turn into a tragic hero. The entire premise of the plot is dependent on his conniving daughters (with help from Lear's ego). These family issues turn Lear to a tragic hero. Much the exact same could be said about Gloucester, which will also be analyzed within this paper. It's universally agreed that the main source for its story of King Lear and his brothers was the anonymous earlier play called The True Chronicle History of King Leir (generally abbreviated to King Leir or just Leir), that wasn't released until 1605 but was probably performed in 1594 or sooner (Thompson, 13). Shakespeare's King Lear is a detailed outline of the effects of somebody's man activities, and the behaviour of his family. Lear is the king of England in this drama, who makes the decision to disperse his kingdom amongst his three brothers...