Themes, Motifs and Symbols in The Tempest Flashcards

How does The Tempest explore the theme of power?

Power dynamics are central, with Prospero using magic to control the island and seek revenge.

The play includes assassination plots and Prospero eventually giving up his power, suggesting that harmony is better achieved through collaboration rather than domination.

How does The Tempest reflect themes of colonisation?

Prospero’s control over the island and enslavement of Caliban mirror European colonisation.

Caliban’s resentment and portrayal as intelligent highlight the oppressive nature of colonialism and the dehumanisation of indigenous peoples.

What is the significance of forgiveness in The Tempest?

Prospero initially seeks revenge but learns to forgive by the end, pardoning his brother Antonio despite calling him “most wicked.”

This forgiveness suggests an end to the cycle of violence among the characters.

What does the storm symbolise in The Tempest?

The storm symbolises Prospero’s magical power and revenge, causing suffering and demonstrating human vulnerability against nature’s might.

How is magic portrayed in The Tempest?

Magic is both a tool of control and cruelty for Prospero. He uses it to reclaim his title and control others, but his eventual decision to give up magic symbolises the achievement of true harmony.

What does the chess game represent in The Tempest?

The chess game between Ferdinand and Miranda represents strategic manipulation. Prospero’s control over events and people, like chess pieces, ends when he gives up his magic, embracing chance and surprise in life.

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