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Puck and Bottom in A Midsummer Night's Dream When James Joyce was a teenager, a friend asked him if he had ever been in love. He replied, "How can I write the best love songs of our time if I had been in love - A poet must always write about a past or a future humor, never about a current 1 - A poet's task will be to compose tragedies, never to be an actor in one" (Ellman 62). I cite this because - after substituting the word "humor" for "tragedy" and allowing a little latitude on the meaning of the term "celebrity" - Joyce is subconsciously providing A Midsummer Night's Dream's argument about the function of the artist. That's to say, an artist has to be removed from the action, or, at least, not likely to normal temptations. This psychological distance provides the artist the kind of view that Theseus likens into a madman's. It also, however, gives the artist a vantage point from which he will give another characters' adventures meaning. Therefore, I'll argue that, at A Midsummer Night's Dream, Shakespeare sees the artist as somebody who is removed from the play's key activity, but provides significance to the drama's encounter (such as both the audience and the other figures). I will show this by examining the roles of the two counterpart artists: Bottom (that supercedes Peter Quince as Every Mother's Son's artist), and Puck (whose artwork is slowly changing people's hearts and minds). My initial four paragraphs reveal how Shakespeare utilizes Puck and rectal allegorically to signify two different elements of the artistic mind. Secondly, I reveal how Shakespeare leaves them emotionally remote from the main action of this play. Finally, I'll show how they end up interpreting the drama, thereby, giving it meaning. It is im...