King Richard III Essay

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Source: "'Why Should Calamity Be Full of Words?': The Efficacy of Cursing in Richard III," in Iowa State Journal of Research, Vol. 56, No.1, August 1981, pp. 9-21.

[Bevington examines the power of curses in Richard III in particular, the effectiveness of self-cursing in the play. He remarks that many of Richard's victims-Lady Anne, for example-begin by cursing themselves, and that Richard successfully avoids either cursing himself or being cursed by others until the close of Act IV, at which point he has become king and is desperately trying to hold onto power. Like his victims, the self-curses he resorts to are fulfilled. Bevington concludes that in the world of Richard III, people's words become instruments of divine justice that can turn against them.]

"Why should calamity be full of words?" asks the Duchess of York in IV.iv of Richard III, thereby posing a question that seems central to Shakespeare's...

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This section contains 5,986 words
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