William Shakespeare 's The Merchant Of Venice

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In The Merchant of Venice by William Shakespeare the play is based upon the hierarchy between Christian men and Jewish men. A character by the name of Bassanio borrows money from his friend Antonio, and Antonio borrows the money from Shylock to give to Bassanio. Eventually, Antonio cannot pay the money back because his ships have supposedly sunk. Therefore, he comes close to death because he signed a bond with Shylock stating that Shylock would get a pound of his flesh if the bond was not repaid. In the end, the conflicts between the characters are resolved, and the mastermind behind the all of the conflicts, Portia comes forward. Furthermore, the character of Shylock has a complex personality which makes it hard for the audience to decide…show more content…
He does not care about the wellbeing of his daughter, his cruel actions drive his daughter away. Furthermore, Shylock has a conversation with Bassanio on the topics of hatred and murder. Shylock says, “Hates any man the thing he would not kill?” (4.1.67). Shylock is saying when one hates another man, why would he not want to kill it. “Thing” connotes something inanimate or not important. Shylock thinks of human life as not important. Therefore, he is trying to justify that his want to kill Bassanio is out of hate. In comparison to Shylock Bassanio states, “Every offense is not a hate at first” (4.1.68). Bassanio is saying if someone offends another person, they do not hate them immediately. There is a gentleness to Bassanio, unlike Shylock. Bassanio is suggesting forgiveness. This contradicts Shylock’s statement completely, showing the brutality of Shylock. Antonio is more sympathetic than Shylock because he is not violent. During the court case when Antonio wins and gets to choose Shylock’s punishment, he does not punish Shylock with violence. Antonio says, “he do record a gift, / Here in the court, of all he dies possess’d / Unto his son Lorenzo and his daughter” (4.1.385-388). The tone of the statement made by Antonio describes a sense of power. Antonio powerful because not only is he punishing Shylock, but he has self control and gives away all of Shylock’s money to someone who
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