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ICSE - X - English

Shylock is a psychologically complex character ; discuss with regard to these headings :
  • His All-consuming Passion for Revenge.
  • His Inhumanity and Bad Traits.
  • His Hatred for Antonio.
  • A Lonely Man and His Daughter, a Nuisance.
  • His Punishment.

please answer this question in 300-400 words.

Asked by mahapatramamata76 3rd May 2016, 3:33 PM
Answered by Expert

Answer:

Please expand the points below to frame your answer.

His Hatred for Antonio: Shylock's hatred for Antonio is visible right from the beginning of the play. It stems from the fact that he is constantly criticised and condemned by Antonio for being a Jew and a moneylender. His hatred for Antonio grows when his daughter elopes with one of Antonio's friends taking along all his possessions.

His All-consuming Passion for Revenge: Shylock takes the opportunity extended to him to extract his revenge on Antonio in the form of the penalty. By the end of the play his discontent towards Antonio elevates to such heights that all he can see is the death of Antonio through the pound of flesh that he will cut. He loses his sense of reason. It ceases to be a matter of money or reputation to him.

His Inhumanity and Bad Traits: Antonio likens Shylock to animals, especially a dog at many occasions in the play. The hatred which Shylock's nurtures for Antonio too lowers him to a lowly character by the end of the play. He refuses to empathise with Antonio when he realises that he will be unable to repay his debt because of genuine reasons. He is focused solely on getting the pound of flesh just like a predator who eyes its prey.

A Lonely Man and His Daughter, a Nuisance: Jessica is Shylock’s only daughter who breaks his heart by eloping with Lorenzo, a Christian. When she elopes, she takes away with her some of Shylock’s ducats and some treasured family heirlooms. She not only runs away but also converts to Christianity and this upsets Shylock a great deal. It is apparent that Jessica not only hates her father and his rude manners but also associates Shylock's behaviour with being Jewish.

His Punishment: Shylock is taught a good lesson at the trail as a fitting response to his vengeful ways. He is not only humiliated in the court but is also robbed of his wealth and also forced to convert to Christianity. 

Answered by Expert 3rd May 2016, 5:45 PM

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