The Merchant Of Venice By William Shakespeare

1685 WordsMay 9, 20167 Pages
The play The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare is anti-semetic because anti semetic thoughts and actions are incorporated in a majority of his charcters. The actions of these Christian charcters go against Shylock, and other Jews presented in the play; as a result, establishing a clear seperation between the two ethnic groups. The constant hatred and mistreatment towards Shylock only enhances the division since it develops the idea that Christianity is the superior religion. Although there are many instances in which Shakespeare creates sympathy for Shylock rather hate, Shakespeare 's portrayal of him is what highlights the anti-semitism in the play. In the play, it appears to be clear that anti-Semitic charcaters, such as Antonio and Salanio, exist to highlight the mistreatment and power Christians have over the Jews. Many instances in which dominance is expressed towards Jews , is towards Shylock. In the play Shylock states regarding Antonio, You call me disbeliever, cutthroat dog, And spet upon my Jewish gaberdine, And all for use of that which is mine own. Well then, it now appears you need my help. Go to, then. You come to me and you say "Shylock, we would have moneys"-you say so, You, that did void your rheum upony beard, And foot me as you spur a stanger cur Over your threshold (1.3.121-129). As presented by his quotation, Shylock criticizes Antonio for placing himself at a high status to judge his life style and
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