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Merchant of Venice anyone?

Discussion in 'Personal' started by Doglover, May 6, 2012.

  1. Simple question really - is Portia's father controlling or does he genuinely love her?
    Trying to help daughter with an essay, but I have never studied Merchant of Venice and she is getting a little bit confused.
  2. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    Are the two mutually exclusive? My father was controlling but I do believe that he genuinely loved me.
  3. Given the context of the play - women in Shakespeare's time, especially wealthy women, were often considered to be "owned" by their families and could be traded to make advantageous marriages, to bring further wealth to the family etc and were expected to accept whoever was chosen for them as a husband. So Portia's father may have loved her dearly but might still have married her off to suit his purposes - and the caskets serve as a means of control. However, the idea behind the choosing of the caskets is that the man who understands Portia best will choose the correct one so it could be argued that her dad had her best interests at heart! She seems to think so, anyway.
  4. Nutella - I don't think they are mutually exclusive either.
    I suppose the problem she is having is that it is actually a piece of creative writing in which she has to be Portia's father, telling her how he feels about her and why he has left this task.
    I think she is finding it difficult to write it from the father's perspective, understanding that he is being a little controlling because he loves her.

  5. I agree with Windmillie.
    The caskets system was designed to weed out anyone who was only after Portia's money. The winner would be the one who didn't go for the expensive choices.
    The father's perspective would be that he wasn't going to be around to see who his beloved daughter chose. He wanted to make sure the man who married her would love her for herself and not her money.
  6. Yep, I thought that, but is it all about her or is it about where his money is going?
    I like to think it is not about the money.
    She is also confused about Bassanio and whether he really loves Portia.
  7. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    Surely that can only be conjectured.
    I reckon he's a gold digger.
  8. She has to write a creative piece on how Portia's dad feels about her, and how Portia feels about her dad - including how she feels about Bassanio and why her dad would like him - I am not sure he would :s
  9. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    What weird homework they do give in that school, Doglover! Is this the same teacher who asked the silly question about the traffic jam?
  10. No, that was a different one [​IMG]
  11. Anonymous

    Anonymous New commenter

    That emoticon does make me laugh!

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