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The Merchant of Venice


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The Merchant of Venice

  1. 1. by William Shakespeare Created for: Technology in Education, Dr. Merrill Created by: Olivia Hall The Merchant of Venice
  2. 2. A Little History Lesson… <ul><li>Venice in the late-1500’s </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The richest city in Europe </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Home to many tradesmen, foreigners, and different religious views </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Jewish people were targeted – negatively </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Religious Intolerance <ul><li>Jewish people confined to ghetto </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Gated “community” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Treated with little or no respect </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Kicked or spit on </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cheated </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Forced to wear red caps </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Can be seen in The Merchant of Venice! </li></ul></ul></ul> (Shylock in a film version of The Merchant of Venice  )
  4. 4. Venetian Women <ul><li>Not respected </li></ul><ul><li>Under the rule/command </li></ul><ul><li>of men </li></ul><ul><ul><li>In the play: </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Jessica and her father </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Portia and her father </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>But not necessarily their father </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Husbands, brothers, uncles, etc. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>No political power </li></ul>
  5. 5. Shakespeare’s England (in the mid-1500’s) <ul><li>Under the rule of Queen Elizabeth I </li></ul><ul><li>Jews expelled in the Middle Ages </li></ul><ul><li>Nation-wide conflict between Catholics and Protestants </li></ul><ul><li>Playwrights had to be careful not to offend anyone; especially the Queen! </li></ul><ul><li>Similar to Venice: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Important European city </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Cosmopolitan </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Home to many foreigners </li></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Let the Play Begin! <ul><li>Things to remember while reading: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Religious intolerance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Role of women </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Importance of trade and economics </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Pay attention to: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Relationships </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Between men and women </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How are the women treated? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How are the Jews treated? </li></ul></ul>
  7. 7. Important Characters <ul><li>Antonio: a merchant of Venice </li></ul><ul><li>Bassanio: Antonio’s friend; Portia’s suitor </li></ul><ul><li>------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ </li></ul><ul><li>Shylock: a Jew </li></ul><ul><li>Jessica: Shylock’s daughter </li></ul><ul><li>------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ </li></ul><ul><li>Portia: an heiress “looking for” a husband </li></ul><ul><li>Nerissa: Portia’s friend and lady-in-waiting </li></ul>
  8. 8. Act One Summary <ul><li>Antonio = very influential merchant </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Has many ships out at sea </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Bassanio is pursuing Portia </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Her father wants her to marry </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>“ Casket Game” </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Portia: not impressed </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Shylock is mocked </li></ul><ul><li>by Antonio </li></ul><ul><ul><li>The deal </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Interpretations, Analyses, or Ideas? <ul><li>Act One </li></ul><ul><li>Why is Antonio sad? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>He is in love? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>He is nervous about ships? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The casket game will rule </li></ul><ul><li>out unworthy suitors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Explanation </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Relationship between </li></ul><ul><li>Antonio and Shylock </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What it says about the prejudices of Venice at the time </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Act Two Summary <ul><li>Portia’s suitors: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Morocco chooses gold </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Arragon chooses silver </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Significance </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Shylock’s daughter, Jessica </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Her plot and elopement; Shylock’s lament </li></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Interpretations, Analyses, or Ideas? <ul><li>Act Two </li></ul><ul><li>Is there such thing as true love in this play? </li></ul><ul><li>What can be said of Shylock? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Directly (according to text) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Indirectly (interpretations, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>analyses, or ideas?) </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Act Three Summary <ul><li>News of Antonio’s ships </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Shylock rejoices, then returns to cursing daughter </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Father’s sins delivered on daughter? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Bassanio tries the “Casket Game” (Portia in her disguise  ) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Chooses lead and wins </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Significance? </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Antonio is bankrupt; Shylock gets his revenge </li></ul><ul><ul><li>… or does he? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Portia’s loyalty to Antonio: a plot hatches </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Interpretations, Analyses, and Ideas? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Shakespeare: painting Shylock as malicious? Or justifiable? </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Act Four Summary <ul><li>Antonio’s trial </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Portia to the rescue </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>How it all backfires on Shylock </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Shylock’s punishment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Half of his estate  Antonio </li></ul></ul><ul><li>----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- </li></ul><ul><li>Interpretations, Analyses, or Ideas? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Contract between Antonio and Shylock = fair? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Why Shylock turns down the money </li></ul></ul></ul>
  14. 14. Act Five Summary <ul><li>Happy Ending! </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Jessica and her lover </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Portia and Bassanio </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>The “Ring Game” </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Interpretations, Analyses, or Ideas? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>What the “Ring Game” says about Portia </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>And women in general </li></ul></ul></ul>
  15. 15. And so… <ul><li>Shakespeare: anti-Semitist? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Or an advocate for the Jews? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>The cross-dressing women: is he empowering them? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Or: powerful = “become” men? </li></ul></ul><ul><li>What do the three caskets mean? </li></ul><ul><li>What are YOUR thoughts? </li></ul>
  16. 16. Fine ( The End)
  17. 17. References <ul><li>Shakespeare, William, and Stephen Greenblatt. The Norton Shakespeare . New York: W.W. Norton, 2008. Print. </li></ul>