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The Development Of Desires And Magical Intervention In The Tempest

1356 words - 6 pages

Act 3, Scene 2 of The Tempest by William Shakespeare includes several pivotal moments that influence future plots and contributes to the development of several characters and their desires. Particularly evident is the development of Stephano’s role in completing Caliban’s long desired dream of Prospero’s demise. Caliban, by inflating Stephano’s ego with compliments of his bravery and courageousness, leads Stephano to the idea of becoming the island’s king. Ariel, additionally, plays a role in this scene as his magical interventions are showcased once more and continue to play a role in the development of the characters. Furthermore, the personalities of the characters in this scene are ...view middle of the document...

The development of Caliban’s hatred and desire for Prospero’s death is continued in this scene as he would be unable, himself, to carry out the task of murdering Prospero as he is not strong enough however after finding Stephano he then understands that his mission could then be completed as he is no longer alone. This is a pivotal development in the play, as Caliban’s words are then becoming actions.

Ariel’s magical intervention additionally develops in this scene as he fuels the tension between Trinculo, Caliban and Stephano. While Caliban is enraptured by Stephano and the potential within him to carry out his desires, Trinculo had stumbled upon Caliban and had believed him to have been struck by lightning and killed. Caliban immediately favours Stephano and believes that Stephano is “a brave god” as he believes he “bears celestial liquor” (2.2.95). Caliban then begins complimenting Stephano and promising fealty to him. Trinculo is unimpressed with Caliban who continually praises Stephano while calling him less courageous in prior scenes. Ariel utilizes this rising tension in act 3, scene 2 in order to create conflict between the friends so they will be unable to complete their task to kill Prospero. Ariel’s motivation arises from Prospero’s promise to grant him his freedom once completing this final task for him therefore Ariel attempts to dissuade Stephano from Caliban by mimicking Trinculo during Caliban’s story of his past misfortunes. Ariel, while mimicking Trinculo, responds to the story by stating: “thou liest” (3.2.36) to Caliban which then leads to Stephano beating Trinculo and creating a conflict between them as Stephano appears to willingly believe and comply with Caliban’s suggestions and stories but Ariel made it appear that Trinculo did not share his confidence. Ariel’s intervention in the shipwrecked men is a recurring element of the story and develops further in this scene as he learns of Caliban’s plan to kill Prospero and influences distrust and tension between Stephano and Trinculo.

Upon recognizing Stephano’s voice, Trinculo attempted to get his attention by stating that he is “[his] good friend Trinculo” (2.2.84) and once they are reunited he “capers with Stephano” (2.2.91-92). They appear to be good friends and Trinculo particularly celebrates the discovery that “two Neapolitans scaped” (2.2.91). Their relationship then changes in act 3, scene 2 as Caliban’s influence over Stephano encourages hostility toward Trinculo who Caliban believes to be a “jesting monkey” (3.2.37) and wished his “valiant master would destroy [him]” (3.2.38). Stephano refuses to believe Trinculo when he states that he had not called Caliban a liar and threatens to “turn [his] mercy out o’ doors and make a stock/fish of [him]” (3.2.60-61). Due to Ariel’s intervention Trinculo is again accused of interrupting Caliban’s story and this leads to Stephano beating him, much to Caliban’s delight. Once Stephano had beaten Trinculo, Caliban attempts...

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