Much ado and Carol Ann Duffy
Duffy present human weaknesses/ flaws in some of the characters they write about In Shakespearean play ‘Much Ado about Nothing’, Don John is a very Important character. He is an illegitimate son, which automatically lowers him In the society of the Elizabethan age. He Is Isolated, Ignored and rejected by everyone In his life, which Is one of the reasons which seem to force him to behave as a villain.
People expected this of him as they assumed that everyone born out of wedlock was probably an untrustworthy, luscious villain. Don John feels he must be a villain by acting in manipulative, sly and Jealous ways, which portrays his lack of psychological development and lack of relationships with people. The relationship we mainly learn about in the play is between Don John and his brother, Don Pedro. Due to Don John being the illegitimate son it means he cannot inherit anything from his family nor have the same recognition as his brother, who is of legitimate birth.
Even though Don Pedro doses’t outwardly treat Don John cruelly, Don John Is very aware that he Is seen s socially Inferior to Don Pedro He Is a device used by Shakespeare to create tension and drama throughout the play. He Is not the most complex villain among Shakespearean villainous characters, however he has a purpose. The thinness of his character teaches us about the knowledge people have of him In society: he Is Just seen as a ‘bastard’ and people don’t even want to be associated with him so don’t bother to learn anything about him.
The fact that we don’t learn much about Don John also reminds us that the play isn’t meant to be a tragedy; it is supposed to teach us about the misunderstandings. It isn’t really supposed to analyses evil at all. The question deals with Don John’s character of being weak and flawed. Flawed means having or characterized by a fundamental weakness of imperfection whereas weakness means a disadvantage or fault. In Don John’s first appearance, everyone is celebrating the return from war.
They are all In high spirits and good moods, however when Don John enters the mood suddenly lowers and people begin to feel nervous and uncomfortable. In this appearance Don John acts respectful and genuine. He says ‘l am not a man of many words, but thank you. This shows that he Is poor at communicating in social situations; however he is trying to fit in. Shakespeare purposely made him different from the rest of Don Padre’s men because his social status is much lower than the rest of them in that day and age. The others are respected Just from the point that they are legitimate children.
This quote is the only time he speaks in this scene, which implies that he is quite mysterious and withdrawn from society and deep in thought. It also suggests that he lacks self- esteem due being treated as inferior. This quote could otherwise be interpreted as IM being sarcastic. He repeats thank you’ which means he is not in fact thankful, but is the opposite as they have all treated him so badly. He uses an unfriendly, stiff tone to show how reserved he is and that he does not want to give any more Information than Is absolutely necessary.
This highlights Shakespearean purpose for Don John which Is to use him as a dramatic device, and he causes drama and tension in his very first appearance in the play. In Act 2 scene 1 Beatrice says of Don John, after. ‘ This shows that Don John is not very good at making first impressions. This is cause he makes no effort to impress people as he knows that when they find out he is a bastard they will not want to be associated with him. ‘Tartly suggests sourly tastes, which relates to his outlook on life.
He has a sour outlook on life due to the sour treatment that people respond to him with. Therefore he has learnt to be this way as he is treating others the way they treat him. In Act 4 scene 1 Don John says after the shaming of Hero, ‘Sir they are spoken, and these things are true. ‘ This seems quite ironic seeing as Don John is often being manipulative ND lying to people. He is trying to trick people into believing him about Hero out of spite. Right from the beginning of Act 1 scene 3, we get a sense of how unhappy Don John is.
His ‘sadness is without limit’ suggests that he never stops feeling sad. He has never been given a reason to be happy so his default emotion is sadness. It also implies that sadness is not a big deal to him, also because it is all he has ever known, and he uses this anger and upset to hurt other people. This sadness may get some sympathy from the reader but he refuses to ‘hear reason’ as Comrade suggests. Comrade is stating that he thinks Don John is being irrational. ‘Reasoning’ is a human skill.
By saying that Don John cannot reason he is suggesting that he is annalistic and non-human. This does fit in with his character as he is so much lower in society than everyone else. He is treated as an animal as his feelings are disregarded and he is isolated like a dog in a cage. Later on in Act 1 scene 3 we again learn how unhappy and disturbed Don John is. This is made clear when Comrade asks a question: ‘Can you make no use of your discontent? POS; This shows that Don John’s closest friends think he is being unreasonable and is not making sense.
Also, although Comrade is close to Don John his lines are still short which indicates that he doses’t want to say too much and he still takes special care not to make him angry. This makes us assume Don John is disturbed and unhappy because ‘discontent’ suggests you are on edge and are constantly not happy about something- in this case it is that he won’t ever be accepted by the people around him. Also at the time he is talking with quite a lot of anger and despise in his tone. During his rant he says ‘elf I had my mouth, I would bite. POS; This tells us that his words are controlled by his brother, Don Pedro, as he must say everything that will please him. If he was to be given his freedom he would use it in violent ways to cause mayhem and unhappiness amongst those who have treated him badly. Therefore we learn through act 1 scene 3 that he is very disturbed and unhappy due to the pain and suffering he has been caused. If he had it his way he would make everyone else’s life a living hell and drag everyone down to the level he has in society. In contrast to his