King Lear by William Shakespeare

803 WordsFeb 21, 20183 Pages
Blindness is a theme that we see throughout King Lear in many characters including King Lear, Gloucester and Albany. Although blindness is a theme it is also a psychological metaphor and can be defined as not having sight.2 Shakespeare forces us to see that being blind is a mental flaw just as much as it is a physical flaw. Lear is not only metaphorically blind but is also blind toward nastiness and loyalty . We see Gloucester’s blindness in more literal terms as he is literally blind but he can still see, and Albany has a more common form of blindness, as he is blind to his wife. These characters are only able to see after a tragic loss. However the person in the play that is more significantly blind is King Lear. His role was to distinguish between good and evil, but due to his in ability to see he is not able to do just so. Lear’s first encounter with blindness was at the beginning of the play when he was fooled by his two older daughters lies and was not able to see the true love that Cordelia had for him, resulting in King Lear banishing her from his kingdom. As shown in the play “for we have no such daughter, nor shall ever see that face again. Therefore be gone without our grace, our love, our benison” (1.1. 265-267).3 King Lear’s blindness also lead to the banishing of Kent, because Kent saw the true love Cordelia had for her father and was trying to protect her from his irrationality. Kent then disguised himself and was hired as a servant by King Lear. This proves

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