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The exposition of William Shakespeare

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„Much ado about nothingWilliam Shakespeare

Analysis of Act1 Scene1
The play “Much ado about nothing” by William Shakespeare deals with love and intrigues. Espacially the first act serves as an exposition of the text.
It introduces all the main characters, their roles in the play and which kinds relationship they have with the other characters of Shakespeare’s play. For example Beatrice, who is Leonato’s niece, is a happy, bright and intelligent girl. Her opinion is that a marriage is the worst thing that could happen to someone. “A dear happiness to women...I had rather hear my dog bark at a crow than a man swear he loves me.” (Act 1 Scene 1) Directly in the first act the audience gets an impression about the relationship between Beatrice and Benedick, a nobleman from Pandua. They make fun of each other and try to defeat the other one with their arguments, witty jokes and the use of puns. Because of their “merry war” they make this play turn into a comedy. “A bird of my tongue is better than a beast of yours. I would my horse had the speed of your tongue, and so good a continuer. But keep your way, i’God’s name, I have done.” (Act 1 Scene 1) By only watching the first act of the play the audience knows that these two characters are the source of comedy and that they will not try to outshine the other one until the end of the play, which creates interest and suspense until the end.
This kind of suspense is not only due to this couple, but it is also due to the other characters.
Claudio for example loves Hero, but Don Pedro, who is called the “prince of Arragon”, aks her father for his permission to marry her. This happens at a masked ball and Don Pedro asks Leonato and Hero by pretending to be Claudio. Also Don John, Don Pedro’s illigitimate brother, hears about Claudio’s and Hero’s love for each other and wants to endanger their marriage with the help of his servants Borachio and Conrad. Don John is so angry that he does not care how and why he wants to damage somebody’s life. All he knows is that he needs to do it, otherwise he cannot live. “Any bar, any cross, any impediment will be medicinable to me: I’m sick in displeasure to him, and whatsoever comes athwart his effection ranges evenly with mine. How caust thou cross this marriage?” (Act2 Scene 3) It is easily noticeable that he wants to destroy Claudio’s socail standard because he should be next to his brother and not Claudio. By making Claudio fall out of his brother’s favour Don John will be the one, who will take up his place.
By introducing the characters, themes and plot Shakepspeare direclty describes their relationships and meanings for the plot. He also introduces the mood, which can easily be described as comedy, because of the thing that is going on between the two non-lovers, who declare that they never want to fall in love with someone.
The language of this play lets the audience know that the play is set among the nobility. The characters use puns, methapors and sometimes speak in verses, which makes them characters of the upper class.
To sum up all the information the audience gets in the first act Shakespeare creates a good and self-explanatory exposition. It creates suspense, because after watching the first act the audience wants to know how the characters get together, if Don John’s intrigue will work and if the play will have a happy ending.
Diese Hausaufgabe enthält eine kurze Zusammenfassung über den ersten Akt sowie eine inhaltliche Anyalyse.
Besonders die Einleitung des Stückes wird detailiert analysiert. Es wird erklärt warum genau der erste Akt als eine Exposition gebraucht wird. Außerdem werden die Beziehungen der einzelnen Charaktere als auch die Stimmung, die beim Publikum erzeugt wird, genau besprochen. (604 Wörter)
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William Shakespeare | Much ado about nothing | Act 1 | Exposition | English | Englisch | kurze Zusammenfassung des ersten Akt | Hausaufgabe
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