Viola in William Shakespeare's The Twelfth Night Essay

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Viola in William Shakespeare's The Twelfth Night Viola as a main character is the most deceitful; she tricks everybody into believing she's a man, but as well as being most deceitful she is also the most honest and sincere. So what are her attractive qualities? Why does she appeal to us as an audience? In this essay I will be looking at Viola and her appealing qualities as well as the way in which I believe she should be acted. In many ways Viola represents true love, love that is not self-seeking but self-sacrificing, throughout the play she remains true to Orsino, trusting him completely "To do you rest, a thousand deaths would die" she would die for him and willingly. Many people would…show more content…
Except unlike Orsino she does not create an image of pomposity or appear a snob. However she does deceive everybody into believing she is a man, is deceit not a loathsome quality? If it is, why do we not shun her? I think it is because she shuns the disguise, "disguise I see thou art a wickedness" she understands that disguising yourself does not solves problems but rather creates them. Even though when she realises the feeling Olivia has for her, she does not laugh and use this knowledge to ridicule her, "poor lady, she were better love a dream" but pity's her instead. Viola reveals her true self to us in her soliloquies, she tells us what she is thinking, "my master loves her dearly, and I (poor monster) fond as much on him." And so is more honest. However people like Olivia are telling us what they think they are feeling "methinks I feel this youths perfections with an invisible eye and subtle stealth to creep in at mine eyes " but since what they are thinking is based in violas lie, they are in a way lies. So it is Viola who we see as the real person and consequently feel for her much more than the others. Viola never seems to get caught up in petty arguments, but nor does she seem above the characters in doing
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