Skip Nav

Shylock: Villain or Victim - Assignment Example

Related Questions

❶Robert from Artscolumbia Hi there, would you like to get such a paper?

Is Shylock a Villain or Victim?

How to cite this page
Expert Answers
Was Shylock A Victim Or A Villain Essay Sample

He has many speeches that illustrate this side to his character:. This suggests Shylock is intent on killing Antonio with his bond. He has several motives behind this; Antonio has humiliated and mocked him many times and Shylock could profit financially from his death.

However, the speech also insinuates that Shylock is fed up of being discriminated against. He comes into the court with a balancing scale and a knife, ready to cut the pound of flesh. While the court question whether Shylock will have his bond, Shylock maliciously sharpens his knife on the sole of his shoe. Shakespeare portrayed Shylock as a vengeful character whose actions revolved around his determination to harm Antonio. It is clear that he feels this way as he refuses the money offered to him, intent on fulfilling his bond.

As this goes against all Shylock believes in, we perceive him as the victim. You may however feel that Portia was not teasing with Shylock, and that she could just not find a way around the bond. Now that Shylock thinks he is going to get what he wants he now starts praising Portia.

When Portia decides to tell everyone her way in which Antonio can escape his death, and leave Shylock with nothing, things start to go terribly wrong for Shylock. This means that Shylock has attempted to kill Antonio, which Shylock could now be hanged, and will lose all his possessions. Gratiano starts being really nasty to Shylock. Now Shylock has lost everything and even his own religion, also he has to give all his possessions to Lorenzo and his daughter, who ran away from him, and left him on his own.

Now, as Shylock has to become a Christian will everyone now be nice to him? In the end Shylock got left with nothing, and from seeing all this, you have to agree that Shylock has rightly been a victim, as from losing everything, to his possessions to his daughter, and even his own religion. However you have to look at this both ways, if Shylock went through with the bond and actually took a pound of flesh from Antonio, Shylock would be very much the villain. I feel that Shylock has been badly treated, as he should be treated the same as everybody, despite his religion, I also feel that Shylock would not of wanted to kill Antonio, if Antonio had done nothing to Shylock in the first place.

For the audience viewing this in the present they can see that Shylock has been badly treated, and has been a victim, and can see his reasons for wanting to kill Antonio. However, when the audience saw the play when Shakespeare was alive, things were a lot different. The stunts that happened to Shylock were normal, and the audience had to feel that he was very much a villain in trying to kill Antonio, and he deserved what happened to him.

They live in a country next to Israel, called Palestine and attack the Jews regularly. The Palestinians are Arabs and have strong views against the Jews. It is clear in my opinion, that their relationship is quite bad, and has tension between them. I think this makes Shylock appear more like a victim in this instance. In Act 2 Scene 2, Launcelot delivers a soliloquy. Because this is a part where the character speaks to the audience by himself, usually the speaker is honest.

I think that this is quite extreme for a Jew to insult another Jew with anti Semitic insults. This suggests that Launcelot deeply detests him. Because we know Launcelot is telling the truth, there are suggestions that Shylock is a very cruel master and I think these suggestions can be believed.

I think this is quite unfair on Shylock, her father because he is a Jew. This also, in my view makes Shylock look a victim, as he has done nothing wrong except to be a Jew.

His hatred is targeted again, because he is a Jew and for no other reason. Act 2 Scene 4 makes Shylock look both a victim and a villain. Because this is the part Jessica is planning to run away from her father, it naturally makes him look a victim. She plans to take a lot of gold and jewels from her father and cause him great pain. This in my opinion is very harsh towards Shylock; after all, she could just have gone without taking anything with her.

In Act 2 Scene 3, where we hear that she is going to elope from her father, we think this is purely because she loves Lorenzo, but she personally insults him by taking his jewels. This might suggest that he has been quite a bad father to her for Jessica to want to insult him. This makes him look a villain slightly. Also in my opinion, what Lorenzo says at the end of the scene makes him look a villain.

This shows that he has been a sinner, and a villain. I believe Shylock looks a villain in Act 2 Scene 5. This makes him look a villain as; he spends more time with his money, than with his daughter. However, in Act 2 Scene 8, I think Shylock is made to look more like a victim. Solanio and Salerio, in my opinion, represent the general Christian point of view, which is complete hatred.

I personally, sympathise with Shylock in this part of the story, because it would be devastating to lose your daughter.

Get Full Essay

Main Topics

Privacy Policy

The themes of the play are revenge, mercy, and justice. Shylock, with Antonio is the major character in the play, at times referred to as a villain and sometimes a victim. The dictionary defines a villain as "a cruelly malicious person" and a victim as "a person who is deceived or cheated".

Privacy FAQs

Shylock villain or victim In the play, The Merchant Of Venice, whether Shylock is the villain or victim is controversial. Shylock is not the most perfect person in the world, and .

About Our Ads

Is Shylock Victim Or Villain in William Shakespeare's The Merchant of Venice Words | 4 Pages Shylock is trying to say that we are all the same as one another, but just have different religions. Antonio has gone bankrupt, as all his wealth was invested in his ships, which have been sunk out at sea. Get an answer for 'Would you say Shylock is a victim or a villain?' and find homework help for other The Merchant of Venice questions at eNotes.

Cookie Info

Was Shylock A Victim Or A Villain Essay Sample. The late sixteenth century play “˜The Merchant of Venice’, one of Shakespeare’s more popular comedies, is one that is portraying various peoples lives throughout Venice and Belmont. I hope to discover whether Shylock is a Victim or a Villain. The bond is a contract between Antonio and Shylock stating that if Antonio does not return 3, ducats, which he has borrowed, to Shylock in three months as agreed then, ‘Let the forfeit be nominated for an equal pound of [Antonio’s] fair flesh, to be cut off and taken in what.