The Tempest

Liminal Space in The Tempest 12th Grade

It appears that all comedies throughout all ages relies on the accuracy of its meta-commentary, all successful comedies inhabit a illusionary world filled with flickering shadows of truth and mirrors filled with elements of human behaviour. In many ways comedy takes our human experience out of our sheltered reality and into a liminal space that accentuates how strange, and in many ways mad, our life really is. The idea in question, then, is whether The Tempest does conform to this rule and to other conventional laws that a standard comedy does.

The Tempest blurs the edges of what is real, and what is not, so effortlessly and so quickly throughout the plot that it can be considered toppling over the metaphorical edge of reason towards a chaotic illusion, however, the comedic structure holds the play together and preventing it from entering a genre closer the Theatre of the Absurd with no classic resolution. To achieve this affect Shakespeare initially takes away one of humanities greatest frameworks: time. Although the play moves in a chronological fashion there are no clocks featured and no mention of day by any of the characters when speaking of the island which moves the play away from our relatable world. Prospero mentions...

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