King Lear: Uses of Madness

ServiceWho wouldst thou serve?You.Dost thou know me, fellow?No, sir. But you have that in your countenance which I would fain call masterWhat’s that?Authority.What services canst thou do?I can keep honest counsel, ride, run, mar a curious tale in telling it, and deliver a plain message bluntly Author: ShakespeareWork: King LearKent in disguise w/ King Lear (I.4.22-30)-authority-words are magic —> make things happen -Kent words = plain and blunt, say what mean
(to KENT) I thank thee, fellow. Thou servest me, and I’ll love thee.(to OSWALD) Come, sir, arise, away! I’ll teach you differences. Away, away. If you will measure your lubber’s length again, tarry. But away, go to. Have you wisdom? So.Now, my friendly knave, I thank thee.(gives KENT money) There’s earnest of thy serviceLet me hire him too.—Here’s my coxcomb.(offers KENT his cap)How now, my pretty knave? How dost thou? Author: ShakespeareWork: King LearLear, Oswald and Kent (I.4.76-85)-mean character-Oswald doesn’t call King –> disrespect-we dare look me in the eye –> challenge at the time 1. never meet gaze –> equality-Lear hit –> Oswald says don’t do again 1. King – tennis2. Oswald – football
(to LEAR) Thou wast a pretty fellow when thou hadst no need to care for her frowning. Now thou art an O without a figure. I am better than thou art now. I am a fool. Thou art nothing.(to GONERIL) Yes, forsooth, I will hold my tongue. So your face bids me, though you say nothing. Mum, mum,He that keeps nor crust nor crumb,Weary of all, shall want some.(indicates LEAR) That’s a shelled peascod. Author: ShakespeareWork: King LearLear’s all-licensed Fool (I.4.191)-say truth to power-today is comedian (Jeff Dunham)-trans theater (Cordelia – male actor)-
An you lie, sirrah, we’ll have you whipped.I marvel what kin thou and thy daughters are. They’ll have me whipped for speaking true, thou’lt have me whipped for lying, and sometimes I am whipped for holding my peace. I had rather be any kind o’ thing than a fool. And yet I would not be thee, nuncle. Thou hast pared thy wit o’ both sides and left nothing i’ th’ middle. Here comes one o’ the parings. Author: ShakespeareWork: King LearLear’s and Fool (1.4.162-169)-tell king this is family drama -> handed authority –> fool not fool, king is -musical, sing ballads