King Lear

A King's World: Thirst for Acceptance

Like all Shakespearean tragedies, "King Lear" has several prevailing humanistic themes. Certainly, the plot revolves around the obvious themes of parent-child relationships, sibling rivalries and pride as the downfall of man. However, one common theme incorporates all of these elements: A quest for love. In each respective plot, the characters are pushed forward by a need for recognition and acceptance. Lear's desire for flattery from his daughters, Edmund's desire to usurp his brother's position as heir, and Goneril and Regan's argument over Edmund's love all point to the common theme of a thirst for love. By analyzing each plot, one can fnd that the characters' searches for unrequited love are the central moving force behind the tragedy of Shakespeare's "King Lear."

Lear's Need For Flattery:

King Lear's is a sad character from the very start of the play. Lear's search for love is shown in his insistence for flattery from his daughters. His lack of confidence in the love of his three daughters is introduced in the first scene. By demanding that his daughters flatter him for their dowries, Lear shows that he is in need of constant reassurance of his importance....

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