The Manipulation of Prospero
"Manipulation" means "to influence or manage shrewdly or deviously; to tamper with or falsify for personal gain." In William Shakespeare’s play, The Tempest, we meet an interesting, mysterious Prospero, a magician and the true Duke of Milan now living on a deserted island with his daughter Miranda. Prospero has the power to manipulate his own daughter and does this because he wants to protect her from danger.
Prospero has an interesting relationship with his daughter. Prospero talks and Miranda listens unwillingly. She does not pay attention and Prospero always seems to inform her. "Dost Thou attend me?" (1.2. 77).
Prospero exploits Miranda in any way that he can. First of all, for 12 years Prospero forgets to mention to Miranda that she is a princess:
Thy father was the Duke of Milan and
A prince of power. (1.2. 54)
For 12 years Prospero manipulated Miranda by not telling Miranda her true identity. He left her with unanswered questions that bothered her for all those years.
Prospero also upsets her with the tempest that he causes. Yet we can see that Prospero does not mean to intentionally make her sad:
Tell your piteous heart
There’s no harm done. (1.2. 24)
Wipe thou thine eyes; have
Under all his controlling tactics Prospero still loves his daughter unconditionally, and he sympathizes with her, wanting only the best for Miranda.
Since Prospero is used to ordering his slaves around, it is only natural that he also manipulates Miranda with his orders. Lorrie Leininger describes Prospero as a God-like figure, controlling his subject through his magical powers. Prospero uses Miranda as "sexual bait" (151), yet he feels the need to protect her from evil.
Prospero is concerned for the safety of Miranda. As he is talking to Caliban, the memory of the past come to his mind.
In mine own cell till thou didst seek to violate
The honor of my child. (1.2....