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Posts by dani21
Joined: Mar 12, 2012
Last Post: Mar 16, 2012
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Mar 15, 2012
Book Reports / King Lear- Destruction of the Old Order [6]

Write and argumentative essay on the destruction of the old order-personal, familial, social, natural and divine-in Act I of King Lear.

This is what i have come up with im just looking for pointers on how to improve it and making sure that there is no errors in format, puncuation or grammer.

also! any ideas on how to come up with a lead and concluding statement, they must connect in someway.

Lead* In Shakespeare's tragedy, King Lear, destruction of the old, personal, familial, social, natural and divine orders is evident in the king's verdict to divide his kingdom by handing down his power to a younger generation. First, Regan and Goneril's inheritance of power forebodes Lear's deterioration revealing a destruction of personal old orders. Secondly, Lear's rejection of his daughter Cordelia produces familial disorders. Thirdly, Regan and Goneril's inheritance of the king's authority results in a social anarchy. Fourth, the treatment Lear receives from his daughters as well as Lear's rageful reactions exhibits a natural disorder. Finally, Lear handing down his authority prior to his demise is a prime illustration of destruction within the old order of divinity. Overall, there is a vast destruction of old orders as a result of Lear's decision to retire from his duties as king.

A destruction of old personal orders becomes evident when Lear hands down his power to those who are plotting against him. Regan and Goneril reveal their true intentions to the audience. "Pray you, let's sit together. If our father carry authority with such dispositions as he bears, this last surrender of his will but offend us" (I.i.303-307). Regan and Goneril only care for their inheritance and plan to destroy their father. Shakespeare's use of dramatic irony allows the audience to foresee the king blindly lead himself to his downfall. Not being able to see past though their manipulative conduct Lear delegates his authority to his daughters and, by doing so, is blindly heading towards his own demise. Moreover, the fool ironically speaks the truth declaring that Lear is making the wrong decisions. "Why, to put 's head in-not to give it away to his daughters and leave his horns without a case" (I.i.26-27). The fool implies that the king will be without a home after giving his power to his unworthy daughters. It is ironic that it is the fool who speaks accurately and the king is naive to the truth. Overall, it is obvious to the audience that Lear is potentially leading himself to his own downfall by handing down his power to Regan and Goneril, therefore, revealing destruction in old personal orders.

Furthermore, destruction in the old order of sociality occurs in Lear's kingdom as he passes down his kingship to those who cannot fulfill the necessary tasks that come with it. The disorder arises when Lear declares that he will dividing his kingdom up amongst his daughters, "Know that we have divided/In three our kingdom, and 'tis our fast intent/To shake all cares and business from our age,/Conferring them on younger strengths while we/Unburdened crawl toward death" (I.i.35-39). In the ways of the old order Lear, being king, holds all authority for his kingdom as a whole. By giving up his power Lear is setting up the kingdom for destruction. It is not proper for a king to hand down his authority and live a life of luxury. The destruction of the old social order is evident in Lear's choices because the society as a whole will be impaired based on the king's eccentric decision of splitting the monarchy and ridding his authority.

In addition to the personal and social disruptions of the old order, a clear disorder within family dynamics also occurs. Lear ruptures familial orders by disowning his daughter Cordelia who is the only daughter who truly cares for his well being. Prior to her departure Cordelia derisively informs her sisters that she is aware of their cruel intents. "Love well our father. To your professed bosoms I commit him./But yet, alas, stood I within his grace,/I would prefer him to a better place" (1.1.273-275). Cordelia is aware of her sister's intentions and has troubles leaving her father in their hands. In seeing their vindictive plan a tension arises between Cordelia and her sisters, Regan and Goneril, making the family bonds capable for destruction. Shakespeare's use of dramatic irony has the audience gain a strong sense of apprehension towards the devastation about to come into Lear's familial affairs as a result of Regan and Gonerils inheritance of authority.

Not only does Lear's abolishment of Cordelia cause familial disorders but it also causes disruptions in the old natural orders. When Cordelia does not confess her love for her father Lear instantly renounces her, "The barbarous Scythian, / Or he that makes his generation messes / To gorge his appetite, shall to my bosom / Be as well neighbored, pitied, and relieved, / As thou may sometime daughter" (1.1.110-22). Lear's treatment towards his daughter is against natural instinct. Lear does not display any sort of remorse for his loss. In disowning Cordelia Lear is breaking the natural order because in doing so he is severing the natural bond that a father and daughter would naturally share. Additionally, Goneril and Regan's conspiracy to usurp their father's power, authority and dignity also severs the natural order. Both Regan and Goneril only care for the inheritance they will receive from their father and not for his wellbeing. "Now by my life, /Old fools are babes again and must be used /With checks as flatteries, when they are seen abused" (1.3.19-21). There is a disruption in the natural old order in the sense that children typically revere their elderly parents and care for them in a loving manner. Likewise, elderly parents would naturally cherish their children in their retirement years as something to be proud of and as individuals they love. Need a concluding sentence tied to thesis*

In addition to the destruction of nature's old orders, a breakdown in the old order of the divine also occurs as a result of Lear's decisions. By unrightfully handing down his power, Lear ruptures old heavenly orders, "Tell me, my daughters,/(Since now we will divest us both of rule,/Interest of territory, cares of state)/Which of you shall we say doth love us most/That we our largest bounty may extend/Where nature doth with merit challenge?" (I.i.48-53). The king declares that he will grant the greatest quantity of land to the daughter who proclaims the most love for him. In Shakespeare's era it is believed that kings are appointed by god therefore, kingship is a charge that Lear does not have the right to lay down. For Lear to believe that he can divest himself of his power he is placing himself above God, thus demonstrating his hubris and destructing the old heavenly traditions.

Overall, it is Lear's unconventional proposal to separate the kingdom that ultimately causes a vast destruction of the old order in personal, social, familial natural and divine aspects. Lear sets himself up for personal destruction by putting his authority in the hands of those who have a verdict to destroy him. Social orders are destructed by the general division of the kingdom and furthermore, the affairs of state. Familial disorders arise as tensions arise between Cordelia and her sisters and evidently the new affiliation with her father. Moreover, a destruction of natural orders occurs as Lear unrightfully hands down his duty as king. Concluding sentence connects to lead leaves the reader thinkning.*
Mar 15, 2012
Book Reports / King Lear- Destruction of the Old Order [6]

I would agree with the idea of rearranging the essay to focus more on familial vs monarchial order although the rubric says to have a paragraph for each order.

This is really helpful im fixing up my body paragraphs now but i dont understand what you mean about writting letters to help with my introduction. i agree that it sounds like a list so it doesnt really flow but i didnt know how else to word it.
Mar 15, 2012

The thesis is supposed to be the heart of your essay after every body paragraph you should have a concluding sentence that ties it all back to the thesis.

im not quite sure on how you would develop 3 distinct points to back up your thesis statement. When writing your thesis rememeber to keep asking yourself "so what?"

so Fetal Alcohol Syndrome is preventable and irreversable.. so what?

this sounds like more of a concluding statement rather than a thesis try and elaborate more on your idea.
Mar 15, 2012
Book Reports / "Bottoming Out" Essay on King Lear [6]

I am taking an independant english course and i am struggling with this essay.

Write an essay of 800 to 1000 words on "Bottoming Out" finding the place where there is no way to go but up. This essay should refer specifically to King Lear and address these questions:

a) Where is bottom in terms of both situation and character?
b)How can one know on e had reached bottom?
c)What, if anything, is the benefit of reaching bottom?

Discuss these questions in a general way, explaining your ideas carefully, and use some example from King Lear.

I still need to come up with my concluding statements for the body paragraphs.

also in the rubric it says that my introduction should explain "interpretations" im not quite sure this means.

I would appreciate any editing and pointers.
Thank you in advance.

When a person "bottoms out" they are at the lowest point in their life both mentally and physically. Bottom is a frightful stage that some may encounter in life as it extends to the point where their existence becomes unbearable. However, this downfall may be beneficial to those who can gather the strength and use it as a turning point for the better. At the same time, there are many people who cannot fight to get out of this dark place, and it can claim their lives. "Bottoming out" is exemplified in the protagonist of William Shakespeare's tragedy, King Lear. In order to interpret the gradual process of Lear's incidences with "bottoming out," it is essential to analyze the context of his life, and the circumstances around his different conflicts.

For King Lear particular events cause his character to weaken and eventually fall to a point where he hits "rock bottom". Generally, bottom is where it is no longer possible to worsen ones state in life and for Lear, this low point in being resides within his inevitable madness. Lear's descent toward madness escalates in his confrontation of the dreadful storm, "Blow, winds, and crack your cheeks! Rage, blow!/You cataracts and hurricanoes, spout/Till you have drenched our steeples, drowned the cocks!" (III.ii.1-3). Lear reluctantly surrenders to his oncoming madness as he wishes for the storm to flood the earth. He attempts to fight his madness throughout the beginning of the play but, because of the harsh treatment from his daughters, Lear's folly becomes inevitable. Concluding sentence

Furthermore, just like anyone else who reaches bottom, Lear has lost everything that he ever cared for. His daughter's disloyalty is devastating and pushes him into sudden state of solitude where he is stripped of all his authority. In Lear's circumstances this is bottom, where there is nowhere else to go but up as he is socially fallen to the level of a beggar. Considering he has no home, family, or power Lear undergoes a significant drop from his previous title as king. When people are no longer able to feel any sort of pleasure or happiness they will know they have hit bottom. Lear's madness and his misery causes him to realize that he is at the deepest point of his life. "Prithee, go in thyself. Seek thine own ease./This tempest will not give me leave to ponder/ On things would hurt me more" (III.iv.23-25). It is evident that Lear is aware of his poor state as he refuses to take shelter from the storm, claiming that physical pains relieve him from the dreadful misery that his daughters have lead him to. Lear realizes he has hit bottom as he feels his sanity slip away and no longer cares for his physical health. Concluding sentence

Moreover, despite its hardships, reaching bottom can be beneficial because in reaching this lowest state of life there is nowhere to go other than up. In other words, there is nothing one can do to worsen their matters. For King Lear, upon dwelling in this low state of life, he gains a new branch of wisdom that he was deprived of as king. "Unaccommodated man is no more but such a poor, bare, forked animal as thou art.-/Off, off, you lendings! Come. Unbutton here" (III.iv.99-100). Lear develops a sense of sympathy towards Edgar and realizes it is only the flimsy surface of garments that marks the difference between a king and a beggar. Lear's attempt to bare himself is a sign that he now understands the similarities between him and Edgar despite their titles in society. Lear moves from self pity to pity for others. He is able to rid himself of his pride and gains a new found respect for those, such as Edgar, whom he would originally consider to be futile from his previous outlook as king. Overall, in spite of his suffering Lear's incidence with "bottoming out" ultimately makes a turn for the better. Concluding sentence.

All things considered, for anyone, hitting rock bottom is a complex and tumultuous event. This is further exemplified in the "bottoming out" of the protagonist in Shakespeare's tragic play King Lear. Once a noble and powerful king Lear loses everything he's ever stood for and descends into madness. Although Lear's crucial suffering allows him gain a new sense of wisdom and humility. In most circumstances one may not obtain the strength to overcome their downfall and only continue to suffer. While, in observing King Lear, it is understandable that benefits can arise as a result of "hitting rock bottom". In this, one can learn to view "rock bottom" as a point where there is nothing more to lose but everything to gain.
Mar 16, 2012
Book Reports / "Bottoming Out" Essay on King Lear [6]

I am doing an independant course i have to write ten essays in total, five for King Lear and five for Margret Laurence's novel, The Stone angel. This topic confuses me because it says to talk about "bottoming out" in a general way... so im not really trying to prove anything? im use to developing arguments in my essays and the thesis being the main point i am trying to prove.
Mar 16, 2012
Book Reports / "Bottoming Out" Essay on King Lear [6]

The essays for King Lear are due on Monday. I have done three of them so far I'm currently working on the fourth one, this one is more of an assignment.. I'm being asked to analyze "Is This the Promised End?" by Joyce Carol Oates i was given an abridged version. The other four assessments are short essays only supposed to be 800-1000 words and i have been assigned topics for all of them. The topics are

1)destruction of the old order
2)Lear's progress from denial, rage to isolation
3)"Bottoming Out" finding the place where there is nowhere to go but up and relating it to King Lear
then finally the last one which i have not started yet says to trace Lear's physical and spiritual journey throughout the play.
Mar 16, 2012
Book Reports / King Lear- Destruction of the Old Order [6]

This is what i found for the definition of Scythian - a member of the ancient nomadic people inhabiting Scythia
nomad - a member of a people who have no permanent home but move about according to the seasons.

So would Shakespeare's reference to this be an example of a historical allusion? Also by bosom Lear is referring to his heart correct?

As for the letters, i am currently too short on time but that would defiantly be a helpful exercise for future essays! Thank you