The Tempest, By William Shakespeare Essay

1433 Words May 17th, 2016 6 Pages
Throughout centuries of philosophy, people have been contemplating the effects of nature versus nurture. Are people born with the ability to live with unselfish concern, then corrupted by society? Or are humans essentially evil. If so, how does one define what is good or bad? Considering the subjectivity that follows humanity 's perception of altruism, it is arguable that humans are simply an amalgamation of the environment they are exposed to. In the Tempest, Shakespeare depicts humans with the capability to act with virtue, but argues that over time, they are corrupted by their greed for power, monstrous tendencies and illusion of justice. In the Tempest, Shakespeare displays humans as virtuous but inevitably corrupted by their desire for power. The way a human perceives power is a direct result of their upbringing. As said by John Dalberg-Acton, "absolute power corrupts absolutely." At the beginning of the play, Prospero is revengeful. He seeks vengeance on his brother Antonio for his permanent banishment to the island. In twelve years, Prospero has felt the ever looming resentment build until he can no longer stand it, and conjures up a Tempest to shipwreck his brother and cohorts. Considering Prospero 's affluent upbringing as Duke of Milan, he presumably feels a sense of entitlement towards the title. In act I, Prospero says, "I am more better than Prospero, master of a full poor cell and thy no greater father" (1.2.20-21). His entitlement drives him to act…

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