Themes: The Tempest
?COMMON THEMES FOUND WITHIN THE TEMPEST by William Shakespeare In addition to the study guide questions, one essay question from each theme must be answered and typed (12 point) Times New Roman. The Supernatural •How did Prospero come to master his “art”? What were the consequences of his intense study of magic? •What difference, if any, is there between Prospero’s magic and Sycorax’s magic? •When and why does Prospero promise to give up his “rough magic”? Do we actually see him do this? Are Miranda and Ferdinand under a spell when they fall in love, or is their love genuine? Art and Culture •What’s the purpose of Prospero’s wedding masque? How does it draw our attention to the workings of the theater? •In the epilogue, Prospero says the audience’s applause is the only thing that can “set [him] free. ” Why is that? •Does Prospero share anything in common with master playwrights like Will Shakespeare?. Contrasting Regions •Does Prospero conform to the ideals of the court or the pastoral world?
With which world would he most likely align himself? •Where does Miranda fall in the pastoral/courtly divide? Is she prepared to be Queen of Naples? •It’s clear through the actions of the play that courtly laws aren’t suited for the pastoral setting. Or can they be? How would the laws of the pastoral world hold up in the environment of court? •Are there principles that differentiate courtly values from pastoral values, or are the norms that govern each just the same rules, interpreted differently?