Portrayal of Pride, ego and manipulation in Twelfth Night by William Shakespeare and The Importance of being Earnest by Oscar Wilde.

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IB English Oral Presentation

The Portrayal of Pride, Ego and manipulation in the plays Twelfth Night and

The Importance of Being Earnest

"Pride and Ego"; these are two things which bring out the real person in you. These are the two elements that fuel arguments, turning them into fights or, in those times into duels. In the course of arguments, proud persons may feel that their pride has been wounded. These people turn highly egotistic and end up doing things which can be used against them and Opportunists take advantage of this situation turning the tide in their favor.

Examples of the above situations can be seen in both the plays.


Disguise, which is of utmost importance in this comedy, is also a form of manipulation.

There are a number of instances in the play where disguise has been used to manipulate people.

The best example for disguise being used to manipulate others is that of Viola.

She takes the help of the sea-captain who saved her life by rescuing her after a shipwreck and seeks his help in getting her work in a household. He tells her about Lady Olivia, the Countess and she readily agrees to work in her household. But then the captain tells her that it is not possible as Lady Olivia is mourning for her brother's death for seven years. The captain describes her mourning with the words "cloistered like a nun". Here, we see a difference between Olivia and Viola. While Olivia mourns for her brother's death, Viola has almost immediately gotten over the fact that her brother has drowned. The captain then tells her that she can gain service with the Duke of the land but, she needs to disguise herself as a man (eunuch) to do so. Here, we notice...