King Richard Iii and Looking for Richard Essay

1602 Words7 Pages
Essay 1 – King Richard III and Looking for Richard
How has your study of the connections between King Richard III and Looking for Richard deepened your understanding of the context of and values within, each text?
William Shakespeare’s play King Richard III and Al Pacino’s docu-drama Looking for Richard have enriched my understanding of how context shapes the values inscribed within each text. In light of this, the connection that exists between the two texts is: how the central character of the texts embodies the values of theatricality and language in order to attain their own perception of power as shaped by their respective contexts. Whereas Richard III relentlessly pursues political power in the context of a late 16th century
…show more content…
To establish the sinister intentions of Richard the actor, Shakespeare makes reference to his moral and physical impediments that leave him cursing “I that am not shaped for sportive tricks…I that am curtailed…”. Through the subtle use of anaphora and repetition of ‘I that am’, which is fleshed out by a definitive tone, the audience is made aware of how Richard is led ostensibly “to prove a villain” and thus, adopt a disguise. Moreover, Richard’s theatricality is stressed as he embarks as a ‘master’ of his own fate, for he perceives himself as “subtle, false, and treacherous”. His sinister intentions are exemplified by the use of tricolon, evocative word choice and short sentence patterning that create a sharp staccato effect. These intentions allow Shakespeare to subtly resonate Richard with the Vice from the medieval morality plays as well as the Renaissance Machiavelli who actively sought power, caused mischief, practised deceit and cynically gloats over his success. Moreover, Richard’s acting allows him to confide in his audience as he is paradoxically honest about his dishonesty, whilst also encouraging his audience not to detest him, but rather, take delight in his cleverness as the ‘director’ of the play. Thus, the opening soliloquy of Richard III offers an insight into how Richard manipulates the

More about King Richard Iii and Looking for Richard Essay

Get Access