William Shakespeare 's A Midsummer Night 's Dream

1760 Words8 Pages
Early in A Midsummer Night’s Dream by William Shakespeare, the fascistic use of charm, Oberon’s ability to use incantations to unsettle Theseus’ early wish for perfect harmony (1.1.11-15) and control wild forces such as nature, other fairies and mankind, foregrounds the play’s action. Modeled after the power of speech-acts (utterances considered as actions, particularly in terms of its intention, purpose or effect), the theatrical use of charm I propose here predominantly resides in the vocal chords of a dictator (Oberon); that is, it can control, decisively affect and determine. Incantations are not physical—nor do they move. This essay, therefore, is interested in the illocutionary forces of Oberon’s fascistic incantations as opposed to his tangible or finite action. If we are to dislodge charm from the event of its ephemeral potential and meditate, alternatively, on the spoken dimensionality of fascism, what can charm come to mean? I argue that Shakespeare—a talented poet and expert in literary and dramatic composition—invokes Oberon, a manipulative and magic fascist, to augment the power of charm by providing him with the utmost control. Oberon’s recurring charms and their deep affinity to the music of Shakespeare’s poetry thus intensify a fairyland in which supernatural chaos along with mankind mingle in a given-to-be-seen and highly contested dictatorial regime, so as to conceivably emphasize the theoretical indoctrination process we call fascism, thus warranting
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