An Evaluation of the Merchant of Venice, a Take up by William Shakespeare
The Merchant of Venice
English GCSE coursework
One of the reason why Shakespeare s plays will always be popular is as a result of their appeal to diverse audiences. In the Merchant of Venice Shakespeare produces a quite complex play mentioning the question of racism and morality for a few of the considerably more educated members of Elizabethan visitors, whereas for others, primarily the ill-educated groundlings, it is simply an account of an evil Jew who sooner or later receives his comeuppance.
It is important first to determine that sights on Jews and usury at that time were very not the same as what they are actually. Anti-Semitism have been present in England since Jews first arrived. Reports have been contrived of them stealing infants, drinking sacrificial blood vessels and forcing adult circumcisions. These were the scapegoats for everything. Jews have been banished from England since 1290 and just around 1000 converts to Christianity remained in London around enough time Shakespeare was posting. In 1591, Marlowe created The Jew of Malta where the main personality, Barabus, the Jew, was portrayed as incredibly evil and was in charge of the murder of his girl and a convent of Christian nuns. Then in 1594 extreme anti-Semitic thoughts were aroused when Queen Elizabeth I was visited by the Portuguese pretender to the throne, Don Antonio. A Portuguese medical doctor, Lopez, was tried and convicted (probably wrongly) of attempted poison of both queen and Don Antonio. He was hanged, drawn and quartered. This prompted an enormous surge in anti-Jewish attitudes in the general public and the Jew of Malta was revived a yr following the incident.