Coriolanus | Literature Criticism Critical Essay by Christopher Givan

This literature criticism consists of approximately 21 pages of analysis & critique of Coriolanus.
This section contains 6,126 words
(approx. 21 pages at 300 words per page)
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Critical Essay by Christopher Givan

SOURCE: Givan, Christopher. “Shakespeare's Coriolanus: The Premature Epitaph and the Butterfly.” Shakespeare Studies 12 (1979): 143-58.

In the following essay, Givan traces the sources of Coriolanus's self-destructive behavior.

The question of who Coriolanus is has become a critical stumbling block to understanding the play.1 The prevailing critical opinion chooses to deal with the hero's enigmatic character by oversimplifying him. G. Wilson Knight's view is still typical: “He is rather like a finely modelled motor-cycle, flashing in bright paint and steel, every line suggesting power and speed, standing among a row of pedal-bicycles.”2 Operating here is what might be called the tendency towards reification, whereby the hero is regarded as a thing, an instrument, or as Knight calls him later on a “fighting machine.” Eugene Waith&#x...

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This section contains 6,126 words
(approx. 21 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Critical Essay by Christopher Givan