Caliban Essay, Research Paper
Mowat?s essay emphasizes Caliban?s significant role in The Tempest, by William Shakespeare. Caliban?s character, in relation to Prospero?s, expresses the actual relations between the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries of settlers and natives, Caliban being the native of the island, and Prospero, the settler. Miranda and Prospero introduce Caliban to the reader as a ?villain?, ?slave? and even a ?tortoise?. Caliban and his mother, Sycorax, a witch, were the only inhabitants of the island. After Sycorax?s death, Prospero with Miranda settled on the island and enslaved Caliban. Caliban offered them the knowledge of the island and in return, they taught him language. Caliban is described as a ?monster?, ?thing of darkness? and ?a freckled whelp?. He is intended to represent the ?savage? of the island by his appearance and language. Caliban extremely resents Prospero?s actions, as he says, ??and here you sty me In this hard rock, whiles you do keep from me The rest o? th? island?. Caliban shows remorse towards Prospero as Prospero tries to explain his gift of language. In return, Caliban says, ??The red plague rid you For learning me your language!? In translation, Caliban wishes the plague destroyed Prospero for offering Caliban anything of his.
The issue of colonization is a very offensive and corrupt situation. The act of intruding and conquering an inhabited area can lead to a very complex outcome. Such actions have taken place in past colonization, such as the Americas, Africa and India. The Tempest is a novel that portrays these occurrences. William Shakespeare uses two individuals whom encounter a problematic condition. Caliban, the native and Prospero, the settler, both face disagreeable circumstances that lead to the climax of colonization. Shakespeare uses Caliban as a rugged appearance but is actually poetic, friendly and gullible. Caliban?s personality contradicts his appearance and therefore, symbolizes the hidden warped appearance of Prospero. Prospero?s act of colonizing the island is selfish and unjust considering Caliban?s situation.