Good Vs. Evil Divine Justice in King Lear

Essay by Neo_LawrenceCollege, UndergraduateA-, June 2004

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The play King Lear displays betrayal, deceit and . These three components are all familiar in classic Shakespearean tragedies. King Lear features betrayal by various characters in the play. These characters devastate and, in some instances, end the lives of other characters in the play. However, the characters that betray and deceive are eventually destroyed by their many lies and evil actions. With their self-devastation, a sort of divine justice is served. Divine justice is served when the wrong doings of a man or woman catches up to them and they are dealt a penalty for their sins. This sort of justice cannot be given by a court or social order. Only fate can deal such a hand. In King Lear divine justice must be faced for the betrayals one man has played. The man is Edmund. Edmund is the illegitimate son of the Earl of Gloucester and his betrayal runs deep in the play.

Divine justice is served when Edmund is slain by his half brother Edgar in this classic good vs. evil fight. Divine justice is a result of people doing things in conflict with the natural order of the universe. When a violation occurs, a divine power must reconcile the evil or unnatural act. In King Lear, Edmund violates natural law and he is faced with .

Edmund is the illegitimate son of the Earl of Gloucester and brother to Edgar. Unlike Edmund, Edgar is the legitimate son of Gloucester and Edmund s him for it. The motive for the evil acts Edmund commits is because of his for Edgar and his greed for power. Edmund's first betrayal is to his brother. Edmund makes their father believe that Edgar is plotting to kill him. Edmund thinks this is the best way to get rid of Edgar.