The Role of Blindness played in King Lear

Essay by Brandon1982College, UndergraduateC-, March 2002

download word file, 3 pages 3.8

Downloaded 61 times

Blindness and decision making can be viewed upon as having the same similarities. Blindness can be seen as a physical flaw, and not the metal blindness as in the ability to recognize what one perceives. Decision-making, like blindness is related by the roles in which people play. Together blindness and decision-making are key elements in true caricatures of one's self.

In the play King Lear, Lear is the most profound character and he is the blindest person of all. Lear's social status of being an authoritative figure with great additions; was suppose to be able to distinguish good from bad. However his lack of sight prevented him from doing so. Lear's first act of blindness occurred at the beginning of the play with his plan to divide the kingdom into three parts. His reason for doing this was to see which daughter loved him the most. He was then deceived by his two eldest daughters, and did not see Cordelia's true love for him.

As a result he banished his daughter Cordelia from his kingdom using these words:

"Then hast her, fience; let her be thine;

for we have no such daughter, nor shall ever see

That face of hers again. Therefore be gone

Without our grace, our love, our benison."

(1.1. 290-3)

Lear's speech of banishing Cordelia out of the country signifies his blindness in not recognizing his daughter's love for him. Therefore leaves him blind to encountering deception by his two eldest daughters Regan and Goneril.

Like Lear, another character that falls into blindness is the Earl of Gloucester; who was another prime individual of not only the flaw of mental blindness but also his actions led him into physical blindness too. Gloucester's blindness affected him with the lack of ability to see the goodness of...