The Arc of Character in The Merchant of Venice
Lecture no. 19 from the course: How to Read and Understand Shakespeare
Taught by Professor Marc C. Conner | 31 min | Categories: The Great Courses Plus Online Literature & Language Courses
Begin this lecture by tracing the historical background of Judaism in Elizabethan London, and how the portrayal of Shylock conforms to contemporary conventions of comic villains. Then see how Shakespeare breaks free of the stereotypes of his time, developing the character and the play as a penetrating meditation on justice and mercy.