The Role Of Marcus Brutus In Julius Caesar

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Marcus Brutus plays an important role throughout “Julius Caesar”. The main conflict in “Julius Caesar” is regarding Brutus and the choices that he makes. In his plays, William Shakespeare has set up an intricate model of a “tragic hero”. A tragic hero is a person who is usually of noble birth that suffers a catastrophe. William Shakespeare uses traditional elements to portray these tragic heroes, and he uses new ideas as well to make his more complex. To contribute to the catastrophe that he suffers, Brutus makes his own choices. He also has a tragic flaw, which influences the choices that he makes. Brutus makes his decisions based on what he thinks will happen in retaliation, but often times, it is the opposite that occurs. Brutus was born …show more content…
He also shows the character having an internal conflict to add to the plot. By using Brutus as a tragic hero, Shakespeare shows how complex the model is. Brutus is shown having an internal conflict. His conflict is whether he should kill Caesar or whether he should not. On the positive side, killing Caesar would help preserve the democracy that Junius Brutus set up. In the words of Alice Shalvi in “Brutus’s Personal Failure is the Central Tragedy”, “Marcus Brutus fears the threat to Rome’s liberty which is implied in Caesar’s desire for kingship and autocratic rule”(Shalvi 71). On the negative side, killing Caesar would mean he was killing his best friend. “Since Cassius first did whet me against Caesar, I have not slept. Between the acting of a dreadful thing and the first motion all the interim is like a phantasma, or a hideous dream”(II.i.61-65). This shows how Brutus was really dreading killing his best friend. He is saying that he feels guilty and that everything seems like he is hallucinating. Shakespeare presents the inner conflicts of Brutus through his soliloquies. “The genius and the mortal instruments are then in council, and the state of a man, like to a little kingdom, suffers then the nature of an insurrection”(II.i.66-69). The circumstances surrounding his soliloquy were that Lucius has told him it is March fifteenth, The Ides of March. …show more content…
In the play, Brutus makes many different choices that contribute to his downfall. First, he decides not to kill Antony. “For Antony is but a limb of Caesar. Let’s be sacrificers, but not butchers, Caius”(II.i. 165-166). This shows that Brutus clearly did not realize what Antony could accomplish in Caesar’s will. He also did not want the citizens of Rome to think he, or the other conspirators, were murderers. Second, he allows Antony to speak at the funeral. “I will myself into the pulpit first. And show the reason of our Caesar’s death. What Antony shall speak, I will protest. He speaks by leave and by permission”(III.i.236-239). This is problematic because Brutus believes that letting Antony speak at the funeral is a good idea, especially if he gives Antony stipulations of speaking after Brutus and showing their cause in positive light. In “Brutus’s Personal Failure is the Central Tragedy”, Shalvi reveals that “Secure in the knowledge that he has acted in all sincerity and for the good of his country, Brutus fails to take into account both Antony’s Machiavellian wiles and the fickleness of the masses” (Shalvi 72). Brutus thinks he committed a good deed by allowing Antony to speak, but he did not realize that it would hurt him. It was also a lousy idea because the crowd is simple minded and their opinion is easily swayed. Thirdly, he shows the sign of victory too

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