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William Shakespeare's Measure for Measure Essay

Project id 1016289
Subject area Self Improvement
Document type Essay
Words 1407
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William Shakespeare's Measure for GAUGE THE desires of the individuals in Shakespeare’s Measure For Measure aren't completely clear, and are made ambivalent and ambiguous by the use of their language. In 3 particularly.1.52-153, when Isabella visits Claudio in prison, ambiguous lines and puns make it unclear whether Isabella wishes Claudio’s loss of life and whether he really desires to be free from sin. These desires had been further convoluted by looking at the existing Folger Theatre creation of the play. "Trade" (151) can be one pun which illuminates ideas about Claudio's desires. Taken up to imply an exchange, Isabella insinuates that Claudio's sin and loss of life are like the name of the play, a measure used for a measure, or rather a punishment that suits the crime. However, Freud's notion of the compulsion to repeat is evoked when the term is taken up to mean a habit. Isabella insinuates Claudio's perpetual sinning previously when she remarks that Claudio's independence would "offend [Angelo] still" (99) by continuing his behavior. The idea of the death get as a desire to come back to the womb also emerges when Isabella warns Claudio that accepting Angelo's present "Would bark your honour from that trunk you bear / And keep you naked" (70-71), the picture of debarking a tree learning to be a kind of regression. Claudio's response that he'd "encounter darkness as a bride-to-be / And hug it in [his] arms" (82-3) is completely ambivalent and ambiguous. It may be an easy admission to his desire to have death, also displaying that he accepts his punishment easily. Additionally falling under Freud's philosophy, it might instead be an admission of his compulsion to repeat: he'd make like to death as his bride, just as he did to Juli...

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