All's Well That Ends Well | Critical Essay by David McCandless

This literature criticism consists of approximately 31 pages of analysis & critique of All's Well That Ends Well.
This section contains 9,257 words
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Critical Essay by David McCandless

SOURCE: “‘That Your Dian / Was Both Herself and Love’: Helena's Redemptive Chastity,” in Essays in Literature, Vol. XVII, No. 2, Fall, 1990, pp. 160-78.

In the following essay, McCandless sees Helena as a compelling romantic heroine whose chastity and sexual passion are inseparable elements of her character and important components of the play's theme of redemption.

Any discussion of chastity might well start with the simple assertion that, while often mistaken as a synonym for virginity, chastity actually connotes a kind of achieved purity, an absence of sexual corruption rather than an abstinence from sexual experience. Indeed, sexuality and chastity are not necessarily antithetical. Theoretically, at least, one might lose one's physical virginity and still remain spiritually pure. As Juliet Dusinberre explains, this was precisely the point that the humanist reformers of Shakespeare's era endeavored to...

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This section contains 9,257 words
(approx. 31 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by David McCandless