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The Tempest (3): Textual Gaps in. the Colonial Discourses -- Act III and its Adaptations. Plot Summary. Act I 1. the sea change – Alonso and the other courtiers ’ positions threatened; 2. Prospero re-telling history to Miranda, Ariel and Caliban; Act II

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the tempest 3 textual gaps in

The Tempest (3): Textual Gaps in

the Colonial Discourses -- Act III and its Adaptations

plot summary
Plot Summary

Act I

1. the sea change – Alonso and the other courtiers’ positions threatened;

2. Prospero re-telling history to Miranda, Ariel and Caliban;

Act II

1. Sebastian and Antonio, planning the murder;

2. Trinculo and Stefano, meeting Caliban;

Act III—

1. Ferdinand and Miranda on servitude, end with Prospero;

2. Caliban, Stefano and Trinculo’splotting;

3. Ariel gives indictment to the sinful three.

plot summary 2
Plot Summary (2)

Act IV—

  • Prospero speaks to Ferdinand and asks him not to break Miranda’s “virgin-knot”;
  • Masque and Prospero’s famous speech on life as a dream
  • Trinculo and Stephano, coming from the wet pond, get crazy about stealing and wearing the fine garments in front of P’s cave, forgetting about the plan of killing him.

Act V—

  • Prospero puts on the garment he wore as Duke of Milan; promises to set Ariel free, and speaks to the other characters in their trance. Forgives Antonio without getting his response. Shows Alonso M and Ferdinand, and announces that reconciliation is complete.

P’s epilogue

  • Starting Questions
  • order, and gaps in Act III
    • Scene I: Miranda
    • Scene II: Caliban/S/T vs. Ariel
    • Scene III: Prospero’s order
  • Filmic Adaptations and Jarman’s version
starting questions
Starting Questions
  • How do you characterize Miranda? Is she a naïve girl in Act I, and grows to become stronger, more mature individual in Act III?
  • How is the order set among Caliban, Stepheno and Trinculo, and then disrupted by Ariel?
  • What do you think about Caliban’s plan of killing Prospero?
  • What roles does Ariel play in Scenes 2 and 3 of Act III? Does he serve merely as echoes and agent of Prospero?
miranda and ferdinand the order of love
Miranda and Ferdinand: the order of love
  • The use of Renaissance sonnet tradition in The Tempest
  • Act I: Prospero’s speech –(p. 108; I. 2 – ll 120-) –the sympathy of natural elements; a transition to the miraculous?
  • Act III: Ferdinand’s

–- use of paradoxes to show the power of love,

-- praising Miranda’s singularity;

-- emphasizing his nobility (but a slave to love)

miranda s responses
Miranda’s responses
  • Disobeys her father;
  • Apparent submissiveness to F; (ll. 83 - )
  • Can tell that Ferdinand is not willing to do the work;
  • Actively asking for love and marriage.
  • Sexual implication: “What I desire to give; and much less takeWhat I shall die to want. But this is trifling;And all the more it seeks to hide itself,The bigger bulk it shows.”
  • “O wonder!” she exclaims upon seeing the company Prospero has assembled. “How many goodly creatures are there here! / How beauteous mankind is! O brave new world / That has such people in’t!” (V.i.184–187).
scene 2 caliban and s t
Scene 2: Caliban and S+T
  • The “order” of conspiracy
  • S- Caliban: servant monster  lieutenant  Monsieur monster
  • T: --”Your lieutenant, if you list; he's no standard.”
  • Caliban – makes a distinction between the two; subservient to S only, asking his ‘lord’ to protect him.
  • His plan – shows his awareness of the human order (1) the importance of language and knowledge/discourse; 2) the importance of possessing the enemy’s woman).
  • His rejection of S/T’s tune (p. 162)
scene 2 caliban and s t10
Scene 2: Caliban and S+T
  • The disruption of conspiracy –
  • Ariel’s role “Thou liest.”
    • --in defense of P, he repeats Trinculo’s words, which are also Prospero’s (“Thou most lying slave”)—both in an attempt to put Caliban in his old position.
    • The third repetition: “thou” = S.
  • Ariel’s music –interpreted two ways by the two parties (pp 162)
scene 3 an implicit hierarchy
Scene 3 –an implicit hierarchy

Prospero, as he does in Act I, plays the role of God to assert justice 

an artificial assertion of order.

  • Prospero
  • Alonso




S+ T// Sebastian + Antonio

order and gaps in the following acts
Order and Gaps in the following Acts
  • Act IV:

1. virginity ensured;

  • the masque—a trio performs a masque celebrating the lovers’ engagement. (Iris-- Juno’s messenger and the goddess of the rainbow , Juno--queen of the gods , and Ceres --goddess of agriculture).
  • Prospero startles suddenly and then sends the spirits away.

Our revels now are ended. These our actors,As I foretold you, were all spirits, andAre melted into air, into thin air;And, like the baseless fabric of this vision,The cloud-capped towers, the gorgeous palaces,

The solemn temples, the great globe itself,Yea, all which it inherit, shall dissolve;And, like this insubstantial pageant faded,Leave not a rack behind. We are such stuffAs dreams are made on, and our little lifeIs rounded with a sleep. (IV.i.148–158)

Sir, I am vex'd:Bear with my weakness; my old brain is troubled.Be not disturb'd with my infirmity.If you be pleas'd, retire into my cellAnd there repose: a turn or two I'll walk,To still my beating mind. (158-63)

order and gaps in the following acts14
Order and Gaps in the following Acts
  • Prospero’s “Last Judgment” and reconciliation --
    • Gonzalo is an “honourable man” (V.i.62);
    • Alonso did, and knows he did, treat Prospero “[m]ost cruelly” (V.i.71);
    • Antonio is an “[u]nnatural” brother (V.i.79).
  • But Antonio does not respond.
the tempest
The Tempest
  • William Woodman’s (1985)
  • What do you think about its costumes and acting?
derek jarman
Derek Jarman
  • The concept of forgiveness in The Tempest attracted me; it's a rare enough quality and almost absent in our world. To know who your enemies are, but to accept them for what they are, befriend them, and plan for a happier future is something we sorely need." Dancing Ledge
jarman s the tempest
Jarman’s The Tempest
  • scenes of contrast –
  • Prospero’s treatment of Caliban (sec. 1)
  • Ferdinand’s emergence from the sea (as Venus?)
  • Miranda and Caliban (sec 3)
  • Prospero and Ariel (sec. 8)
  • The masque and the ending (sec 12)
jarman s the tempest18
Jarman’s The Tempest
  • intervening the production of its past;
  • “Catherine Belsey's: "history as costume drama, the reconstruction of the past as the present in fancy dress."
  • While it is impossible for an actor to resurrect the seventeenth-century body in performance, it should be possible at least to trouble an unproblematized reception of the body as completely familiar or knowable. ” (Ellis)
the issue of race
The issue of Race
  • Caliban as an appetitive, physically excessive, working-class Northerner.
  • Why does the film presents a white Caliban? For some critics, it is a glaring mistake of Jarman’s.
the issue of race20
The issue of Race
  • Ellis: in the 16th century, there is no distinction between the Irish, the masterless, the Renaissance ‘moor,’ the Indian and Turks– all are 'erring barbarians.’
  • Caliban, has links with Africa, the Caribbean, North America, and Ireland.
  • “A black Caliban is thus an invitation to unwitting anachronisms” (Ellis 268).
the issue of race the masque
The issue of Race –the masque
  • “As such the masque was crucially involved in the establishment of cultural difference, so that it is not surprising that many masques featured cultural others who were positioned as threats to order or as disorder itself, such as Africans, Gypsies, or masterless men.
the issue of race the masque22
The issue of Race –the masque
  • “Jarman's version of The Tempest takes up these crucial aspects of the masque in order to comment on both The Tempest's cultural history and the current state of England. His aim, as with the early modern masque, is to create through spectacle the grounds for a new community.”
  • Jim Ellis "Conjuring The Tempest Derek Jarman and the Spectacle of Redemption" GLQ: A Journal of Lesbian and Gay Studies 7.2 (2001) 265-284.