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    How did the exam go for you? Wasn't too bad for me. I did "the intensity of relationships" question for the sonnets and the Kent question for Edward.

    Wow, someone else doing my texts! How exciting! I did the same sonnet question but the 'Edward's faults' one for Edward. I think the sonnet questions were easier than the Marlowe, but I've always preferred the sonnets. And my quotes from Edward are virtually non-existent (though I did manage to say "Unfold thy paws"!). I think it was ok, though I'm not totally happy with my Edward essay - it wasn't very long and I couldn't really work out exactly what the examiner wanted, so I think I may have focused too much on the wrong things (talked a lot about religion and Marlowe's atheism, so lots of context points, but I don't know if I varied it enough). I think I made a longer post on Edward in another thread.
    Sonnets were really good questions, I could have happily done either of them. I'm a bit paranoid now because I always find it difficult to remember sonnet numbers, so with one of the quotes I wanted to use I guessed at the number, and I'm now pretty sure I got it wrong, but I also mentioned the first line, so hopefully they won't mind too much. And I changed my mind about whether intensity of reationships was at the heart of the sonnets halfway through my essay, but most of the points I'd made by then still worked, so I think that was ok.
    What did you think about it? What did you write?
    • Thread Starter

    For the sonnets I thought the second question looked difficult; about the form of the sonnet etc. For the "intensity of relationships" question I wrote about sonnets 144, 42 and 134. To put it briefly, I said that in 144 he begins "Two loves I have, of comfort and despair" which is an antithesis of absolutes, perhaps representing his attempt to rationalize the situation. However, as the sonnet develops he says "Suspect I may, yet not directly tell" showing that the logic has broken down and he is forced into suspecting and guessing. Also, he then says "Both being from me, both to each friend"; the word 'both' being a synthesis of the two absolutes that originally were placed in antithesis; they merge and thus create greater confusion; the logic breaks down due to the intensity of the relationship. In sonnet 42, he begins "That thou hast her is not all my grief" and "That she hast thee is of my wailing chief"; again like in sonnet 144 he creates an antithesis of these two opposing ideas representing a strive to rationalize the situation. However, he then says "Loving offenders" which is an oxymoron and also uses half-rhyme with "alone" and "one" creating instability in the rhyme scheme; again the initial logic breaks down due to the intensity of the relationship. To counter it I said that all the legal/financial metaphors in sonnet 134 "I myself am mortgaged to thy will" "surety-like" "debtor" etc stifled an expression of the intesnity instead comming across as quite rational, objective and logical and in doing so loosing the 'intensity'.

    For Edward I wasn't quite as structured. Basically I said that on one hand it could be a 'chronicle play' using history as a moral example of past mistakes; that Edward is a weak king etc and this is something Kent expresses as he says "unnatural king" etc. However, complexity arises as Mortimer, Edward's alternative, is arrogant and Machiavellian etc, which Kent again brings up saying "Proud Traitor Mortimer" etc. Thus Kent provides the audience with both sides of the issue giving the audience a route into the moral framework of the play. Also, Kent amongst other characters is "inconstant" and changes his allegiances throughout the play; on one hand he changes his allegiance in accordance with the accepted morality/order that Tudor society was obsessed with, on the other hand is inconsistencies perhaps could have been seen as a threat to that 'order'; thus he can be seen as both moral and amoral. Context wise I mentioned 'chronicle plays', the Divine Right of Kings and how Kent upholds this moral stance, Elizabeth being depicted as a constant unchanging Queen by Privy Council thus making Edward's relationship with Gaveston threatening to a Tudor audience, as expressed through Kent defecting to the nobles. Chain of Being belief of Tudor England that everyone had an ordained place in society, and that as Mortimer Junior grows arrogant and tries to advance himself he dirupts the Chain of Being, which again kent expresses. I basically said Kent depicts both sides of the issue, his inconsistencies arise as he allies himself with the 'moral' cause; but his inconsistences could also be seen as threatening to a Tudor Audience obsessed with 'order' etc.

    Sorry about the length of the post!
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Updated: June 16, 2005
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