Analysis Of Shakespeare's ' Richard IIi '

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The Roles of Women in Richard III Shakespeare’s plays often share some of the same themes: greed, guilt, good and evil, unrequited or forbidden love. Perhaps the most overlooked theme is the plight of women in the time of Shakespeare. In a notoriously patriarchal part of history, the role of women was taboo subject matter; however, Shakespeare had no qualms about commenting on the female condition in his works. In his play Richard III, Shakespeare very clearly details the ways in which women suffer and their options for handling it. The women in the play are some of the few characters left after power-hungry Richard slaughters everyone in his path to the crown, and Shakespeare ingeniously incorporates the powerlessness of women into this complicated power struggle. In his play Richard III, Shakespeare uses his female characters to convey Richard’s talent for manipulation, foreshadow the hardships of other characters, and, after they cultivate their desire for vengeance, uses them to ultimately strip Richard of the same abilities he possessed earlier in the play. Shakespeare is able to initially portray Richard’s skillful manipulation tactics through his interaction with Lady Anne in Act I, Scene ii, when he exploits her heightened emotions and machinates an agreement of marriage from her. In this scene, Lady Anne is in a funeral procession for her dead father-in-law; she is also, more importantly, wailing a lament for said dead father-in-law. She mourns him in an elevated
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