Merchant Of Venice Critical Essay Introduction

Other themes include greed, the cyclic increase of hatred, mercy, prejudice and the opposites- playing versus perception.This essay on Merchant of Venice is an analysis; themes that dominate this play have been explored and explained.We also see that Shylock makes a strange demand from Antonio- a pound of his flesh in exchange of money.

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The play is, to this day, universally read, analyzed, critiqued and taught all over the world.

Not only that, the characters Antonio, Portia and even Shylock the Jew are widely acclaimed.

Antonio’s hate for Shylock, the latter argues, is only because of his religious identity.

Hence, even though the Christians speak about mercy the most, in fact, they are showing prejudice towards Shylock.

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For further information, including about cookie settings, please read our Cookie Policy .After taking money from Antonio, Bassanio insists that this act of lending him money was an investment on Antonio’s part.Even though the latter likes to lend money solely out of a moral responsibility, Bassanio seems eager to view their correspondence as a business matter.Therefore, there is a constant conflict of the themes love and self interest.Hence this is the central theme of The Merchant of Venice.The main theme of The Merchant of Venice is the conflict between self interest and love.On the surface level, the major difference between Shylock the Jew and the Christian characters of the play is their level of compassion.In Act III, Scene I, Shylock’s dissatisfaction is not due to the monetary loss of the ring, rather the fact that his daughter sold the token of love from his dead wife.Hence, we see that certain human relationships do seem to hold more importance in Shylock’s life than money.Even though Bassanio and Portia grow to love each other, it was not the case of pure love initially.Bassanio’s main motivation in asking her hand in marriage was due to his humungous debt, and that he needed Portia’s money to clear it.


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