Plotlear King Lear Essays: Importance Of The Parallel Plot In King Lear

728 words - 3 pages

Importance of the Parallel Plot in King Lear


        Literature can be expressed using many different techniques and

styles of writing, some very effective and others not as much.   One of the

methods chosen by many is the use of so called "parallel" plots.

"Parallel" plots, or sometimes referred to as minor, give the opportunity

of experiencing a secondary storyline going along with the main plot that

otherwise would be unmentioned.  William Shakespeare shows excellent use of

a parallel plot in his play "King Lear", but some question it's

essentiality by asking: Is it really necessary? Does it help the story or

does it degrade it? Is the Gloucester's plot really needed?  Many argue

that it is very important and others say it is completely useless.  This

essay will try to prove that the parallel plot used in "King Lear" is

needed and it adds to overall value of the play.


        Like any other kind of literature "King Lear" contains many themes;

one of which is the "parent-child relationship" conflict.  Relationship

problems are very common, not only in novels but also in everyday life.

Lear starts the entire dilemma of hate and destruction by his foolish

desire for flattery.  He divides his kingdom between two of his daughters

and the never ending crave for power and wealth begins. As we can assume

from the play's title, Lear and his daughters are part of the main plot.

The plot of Gloucester and his sons, is considered parallel.


        Gloucester is portrayed also with family problems.  He experiences

trouble with his two sons, Edgar and Edmund.  This parallel  plot that ties

in with the main one sometimes actually comes into unison and characters

interact with each other.


        The parallel plot can be taken into account as a "back-up" or

"supporting" one.  It proves the point Shakespeare is trying to make in his

main plot.  Gloucester's problems can be compared with Lear's and

similarities can be found very easily.  Both fathers have serious

difficulties with their children.  We can even say that Gloucester's plot

acts as an "echo" since it repeats some of the events which took place

earlier,  only it  uses different characters and settings.


        The theme of craving for power is also found in both plots.

Goneril and Regan can be said to be cold and evil judging from...

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