Revenge on Malvolio in "Twelfth Night" Essay by moonwillow

Revenge on Malvolio in "Twelfth Night"
An analysis of the action taken by the servants of Olivia against the manservant Malvolio in William Shakespeare's "Twelfth Night".
# 45624 | 2,137 words | 0 sources | 2002 | GB
Published on Nov 16, 2003 in Shakespeare (Twelfth Night)

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This paper examines William Shakespeare's comedy "Twelfth Night" and comments on the social context of Elizabethan society and the degree to which revenge is taken upon Malvolio. It looks at how Shakespeare makes fun of the Puritans, whose Christianity opposed the festivities so loved in Elizabethan society in "Twelfth Night" through Malvolio, the stuck-up steward that is totally opposed to fun as festivity. It analyzes the various forms of revenge as devised by Maria, Olivia and Sir Toby and discusses whether their actions do indeed go too far.

From the Paper:

"Madness is a continuing theme throughout the play of Twelfth Night. Maria, Sir Toby and Fabian try to trap Malvolio in madness by acting in such a way as to convince him that they are right. Olivia, already distressed by Malvolio's actions towards her, believes that this might be true. In Elizabethan times, it was thought that to cure a mad person, they should be shut in a dark room until their sanity returned to them, and this is exactly what the plotters do in Act 4, scene 2. They treat Malvolio as though he is actually mad, and Feste joins the scheme, disguising himself as curate Sir Topas to torment Malvolio with his quick-witted tongue."

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