1.1 L's inability to recognise his daughters' motives = catalyst
that leads to own cognitive disintegration.
1.1.1 L asks if ayone can recognise him as he no longer
recognises himself. - curses his tears as sign of
weakness and threatens to tear out his own eyes,
foreshadowing G's blindness.
18.104.22.168 Storm = decent into madness - madness = way to truth? Edg - truthful
character - pretends to be mad 'Poor Tom' - L looks up to him "noble
22.214.171.124.1 KL seems to have come to 'see' but
doubted at end when C dies, refusing
reality. McEvoy - KL dies in moment
of self-deception - no
1.1.2 first error - division of kingdom by asking "which of
you shall we say doth love us most"
1.2 G tells L she values him more than eyesight -
introducing theme - ironic - later gouges out G's
1.3 Edg - says its better to know where
you stand than to be flattered -
reminded of way L encouraged his
daughters to flatter him and can
appreciate truth in Edg's insight.
1.4 L & G understand - insight and self-knowledge are not
dependent on external attributes but are products of an inner
1.5 "Tis the time's plague when madmen lead
the blind" - G - irony G is eventually blinded
and led by Poor Tom.
1.6 "Fathers that wear rags do make their children blind; But fathers
that bare bags, shall see their children kind." - F speaks ominously
of fortune favouring wealthy - materialistic view - since L has given
money to daughters - should expect no more kindness from them.
2.1 Only after G's eyes are brutally torn out is he able to 'see' the truth - gains
2.1.1 true understanding only comes when one is able to look beyond what has been
taken for granted - eyes for G, wealth and power for L
126.96.36.199 "I have no way and therefore want no eyes. I stumbled when i saw."
- despair - lost without eyes and questions family values.
188.8.131.52 Anagnorsis - recognition of tragic plight -
typical of tragedy - realisation but often too
late. Shift from ignorance to knowledge.
184.108.40.206.1 KL's anagnorsis - political and revolutionary - not
personal. - recognition that destruction was produced
by kind of society over which he presided
220.127.116.11 Heilman - "The blind man sees because he can have insight into
the divine reality. The sanity of the mad is that they can
understand eternal truth."
2.1.2 G tells L that even though he is blind he
understands the ways of the world - "I see it
2.1.3 "Pluck out his eyes" - G - imperative.
2.1.4 error - treatment of illegitimate son - epithets - "whoreson", "knave", "issue" -
typical of tragedy - G misjudges his sons
18.104.22.168 Hamartia - fatal error of judgement -
story of Oedipus - End of Act 1 -
epiphany - but doesn't know about
subplot. Results in reversal of fortune =
3 highlight moral lessons of play - what
happens to characters is dependent on
what they choose to see or not to see
in the world around them
3.1 "See better, Lear" - K - literal -
ageing man and metaphorical -
becoming mentally infirm
3.1.1 Play = repercussions of blindness -
fall occurs early in play - long time to
express what he has learned after
having lost daughters, followed,
throne and reduces to destitution in
22.214.171.124 Debasement - at
lowest point - KL could
have avoided so has no
dignity in debasement.
3.2 Ideas of seeing and not seeing are
central to the play - central to a tragedy
3.2.1 only through violent
destruction = nature of unjust
society revealed - potential
for a change? - tragedy =
knowledge and enlightenment
- which comes through seeing
- end of play = hope - corrupt
4 for both L & G - consequences of blindness
can't be reversed, but both are given
opportunity for redemption in the end.
5 Fool - paradoxical function is to offer insight - tries to help L see he is
responsible for causing his own problems. L is gruff with him but is
fond and allows him to speak freely, on some level recognises truth of
what he says. - KL's conscience? - F is outsider - sees reality but isn't
listened to - those who are displaced are genuinely more insightful -
ironic - not until KL was displace that he could see.
6 L - ashamed of way he treated C - refuses to see her.
6.1 "The jewels of our father with wash'd eyes C
leads you" - C 1.1 - 'wash'd eyes' - clarity of
sight and implication that she can see where