Here, the theme of art and life is furthered as Prospero/the actor appeals to be released from the stage,

"...release me from my bands,
With the help of your good hands...
As you your crimes would pardon'd be,
Let your indulgence set me free".

So he unmasks the fictional protagonist as a real life actor to an actual audience, recognising the play as make-believe and drawing attention to its own theatricality and artifice. In Shakespeare's drama then we can see him utilising the theatricality which is heightened if we consider the layout and nature of the Elizabethan stage where spectators were all around the stage and hardly distinguishable from the actors. Thus, Shakespeare draws the audience in assuming they are complicit in the creation of the fictive world, and blurs the boundaries between acting, appearance and reality. "All the world's a stage..." (As You Like It), we are constantly reminded while life, like performances is shown as fated to end up an "insubstantial pageant". Either life is a fiction, like this play, or this play is a fiction like life, and either way, what is the difference?

Previous chapter Back Home Email this Search Discuss Bookmark  
Copyright: All texts on Bibliomania are © Bibliomania.com Ltd, and may not be reproduced in any form without our written permission. See our FAQ for more details.