An Essay On How Sympathetic Caliban Is In The Tempest Written By Shakespeare.
To What Extent Do You Think Caliban Is A
In this essay I will be discussing whether Caliban is a character to be sympathised with or not. I will be writing about his good and bad qualities and how the writer makes you feel about him. Caliban is a Character in a play called ‘The Tempest’ it was written by Shakespeare in the 1900s.
Caliban loves music and nature, this is shown in the play when he says “Be not a feared the isle is full of noises, sounds and sweet airs that give delight and hurt not”. In this speech Caliban is saying that, do not be afraid, The Island is full of strange but sweet noises that make you feel delighted and don’t hurt you. Along with this when Caliban says “Sweet Airs that give delight” he is showing that the noises please him and how much he loves the island.
My second point about how Caliban can make the reader give him sympathy is how he has lost everything he has ever owned. Along with hi losing everything he has been enslaved on his own island. Caliban says this himself when he says “This Islands mine by Sycorax my mother, which thou takst from me”. This makes you feel sympathetic towards Caliban as he has been given this island by his mother but Prospero comes and takes this away from him by forcing him to give it to Prospero. Also this makes us give him sympathy is because he loves the island but it is taken away from him. Prospero is able to do this as he has magical powers and can use them to give anyone cramps, a lot of pain or anything else you could imagine and because of this Caliban has been enslaved by Prospero. This is also why Caliban blames Prospero for every bad thing that has happened to him.
Caliban is also treated very badly by everyone because of his physical deformity. Whenever someone sees him they get scared and think he is some sort of evil monster. An example of this is shown when Trinculo says “What have we here? A man or a fish? He smells like a fish?”.
Trinculo has seen Caliban for the first time and thinks he some sort of ugly fish as he says he smells like one, so in a way he is being nasty to Caliban saying he stinks and looks like a fish. This makes the reader feel sympathetic towards Caliban as he is bullied because of his looks.
On the other hand Caliban has a very dirty and evil mind. One example of this is when Caliban tries to Rape Miranda. Prospero says “Till Thou didst seek to violate the honour of my child”. This shows how evil his mind is and how he uses friendship to his advantage to do his own evil deeds as he had become trusted by Miranda but as soon as this happens Caliban tries to rape her and how he is a potentially dangerous character. He is potentially dangerous as if he has to ability to rape someone, no one knows what else he could do.
Caliban also wants others to do his dirty work so he doesn’t get into trouble. Caliban does this by offering a Miranda as a prize to Stephano for killing Prospero. This is said by Caliban when he says “Ay Lord. She will become thy bed, I warrant and bring thee forth brave brood”. Caliban is also being very manipulative as he is trying to get Stephano to kill Prospero because he is offering a prize. Along with showing he is Manipulative it shows that Caliban has a desire to kill Prospero but doesn’t want to do it himself.
Overall I think Caliban is a very strange character due to him being in a species of his own and because of this I think he should be given sympathy as a lot of horrible things have happened to him like losing the island he loved and after losing it being enslaved on it, I think these things weigh out the bad things that he has done, even though he did try to rape Miranda he only did that because he lost the island and wanted to fight back. In the Shakespearean Times I don’t think Caliban would have been a character to sympathise with as before people would have thought of him as an inferior race because in the past people used to think that humans are the best species in the world and nothing could be better than them but I don’t think people would think this now so Caliban would be treated like anyone else and be sympathised with.